OP, the Publications Office of the European Union, launched the fourth edition of its EU Datathon, last 19 February.

For the first time this year, the competition is open to anyone, worldwide. It was previously limited to EU nationals. Participants should propose an application based on open and public data that are made available by the EU institutions, agencies or bodies.

“Main competing profiles are students and young start-ups, most of them aged 20 to 35”, said Rudolf Strohmeier, the Office’s Director-General. “We expect 150 submissions and 140 people at the final event in Brussels.”

Innovation, digital transformation

The contest with a total prize of 100,000 euro, “is intended to highlight the potential of linking EU data and regional data as well as to promote innovation and digital transformation opportunities by using open data”, Strohmeier explained.

Teams can be composed of one to four individuals. They shall address one of the four proposed challenges: “A European Green Deal” (challenge 1), “An economy that works for people” (challenge 2), “A new push for European democracy” (challenge 3), “A Europe fit for the digital age” (challenge 4).

These are based on the Commission Priorities set by Ursula von der Leyen, the newly appointed-president of the European Commission, who took office last December.

Each of them is organised as a separate competition (with a separate registration). Teams may participate in any or all of them, however with one proposal per challenge only.

Uncompromising selection

The winner of each challenge will be awarded a 12,000 euro-funding. The second team will receive 8,000 euro, and the third 5,000 euro.

Candidates shall submit their proposal with a short description by 3 May 2020 latest.

The selection is based on four main criteria: The relevance of the application and its proposed data sources; The reuse of the open data; The quality of the proposed solutions; And the overall excellence.

The jury includes data experts from EU institutions, international organisations and private companies.

Results next October

The 12 to 16 finalist teams will present their application during the 18th European Week of Regions and Cities, to take place in Brussels from 13 to 15 October 2020. The event attracts more than 9,000 participants.

“It is the first time that the final takes place in the European Week of Regions and Cities”, Rudolf Strohmeier said. “It will give participants the chance to promote their app to hundreds of potential stakeholders”.

The EU Datathon 2020 is organised by the Publications Office of the European Union, in collaboration with the European Commission Directorate-General for Regional and Urban Policy.

Silicon Luxembourg, April 2020