CEF Big Data Test Infrastructure helps solve European policy challenges


The Big Data Test Infrastructure (BDTI) is one of the three latest additions to the European Commission's Connecting Europe Facility (CEF) building blocks, together with Context Broker and eArchiving. It aims to help European public administrations explore new ways of leveraging the potential of their data assets, so that they can improve their policy making and provide the best possible public services to their citizens.

A hackathon, a fusion of data scientists and a policy challenge

To spring up its full potential, BDTI will provide the testing infrastructure for the European Big Data Hackathon, an event organised by Eurostat, the statistical office of the European Union. The Hackathon gathers teams (17 in total) chosen by National Statistical Offices from all over Europe to compete for the best data products by combining official statistics and big data to support policy makers in one pressing policy challenge facing Europe. The policy domain is skills, education and lifelong learning, which has an important role in the 10 priorities of the European Commission for 2015-2019. The specific policy question or statistical challenge for which the teams will be creating a data product will be announced at the event kick-off. 

The European Big Data Hackathon seeks for the creation of innovative products that official statistics will be able to integrate at European and national level. It promotes, as well, the collaboration and creation of networks for capacity building between local communities of scientists entrepreneurs across Europe. It provides developers and data scientists the possibility to work with relevant data sets and generate new ideas and potentially contrive novel algorithms. The prototypes developed at the Hackathon can be the subject of a scientific paper and have publication opportunities in JOS and EURONA.

The Hackathon will take place in Brussels from 9 to 12 March 2019 back to back with the New Techniques and Technologies for Statistics (NTTS) conference, an international biennale scientific conference series on new techniques and methods for official statistics. The winner and the two runners-up of the Hackathon will present their prototypes at a plenary session of the NTTS 2019 conference. Visit the NTTS event page to register. The presentations of the prototypes of the teams and the announcement of the winners will be also web streamed and recorded.

Why BDTI? 

BDTI was born to enhance the building of a competitive data and knowledge economy in the European Member States. It offers big data tools, knowledge and practical support for public administrations to be able to pinpoint areas that need attention and transform therefore the way they serve our society.

BDTI provides a ready-to-use cloud-based test infrastructure that enables experimentation with data analytics and the visualisation of its results. It offers public administrations in Europe the possibility to increase the adoption of big data technologies and the acquisition of analytics skills. The testing environment will be complimented by a catalogue of software tools that will help analyse the available datasets. BDTI also promotes the sharing of public sector data, and facilitate the combination of the relevant data with open government data, by provide a data catalogue with built-in APIs for data ingestion from different data sources. Users will also have the opportunity to join our community building and innovation portal that will allow them to share best practices, lessons learned, methodologies and the results of their pilots. Find out more about BDTI and how to get started here.

What's next?

Stay tuned for the post-hackathon success story to find our more about the results of the competition and the use of the big data test infrastructure by the scientists community!

You can follow the Hackathon Twitter account @EU_BD_Hackathon and the Twitter hashtag #euBDhack for news on the event.

Last updated on  Apr 18, 2019 13:33

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