The 2017 European Big Data Hackathon gathered 66 participants in 22 teams of 3 persons selected by National Statistical Institutes (NSIs). Most participants were NSI staff (50), but persons from other public bodies (4), academia (7) and national data science communities (5) also participated. The teams competed for the best data product combining official statistics and big data to support policy makers in one pressing policy question facing Europe:
“How to reduce the mismatch between jobs and skills at regional level in the EU?”
The data used in the Hackathon was supplied mainly by the Commission, in particular
- the European Centre for the Development of Vocational Training (CEDEFOP) who supplied data on job vacancies taken from web portals,
- the Directorate-General for Employment, Social Affairs and Inclusion (who supplied EURES data on job vacancies and CVs transmitted by national employment agencies)
- Eurostat (anonymised micro-data from the EU Labour Force Survey and Statistics on Income and Living Conditions).
Some teams complemented these data with other scraped data or data from ad-hoc surveys on skills and jobs.
The hackathon was an effective method to boost some innovation projects and “get started”. It was very successful in bringing into focus the possibility to use big data to produce and support new statistical products. The general feedback from participants was very positive. They liked the Hackathon “spirit” and found the event exciting and creative. They acknowledged the very good organisation.
The Hackathon spurred the a collaboration on Online Job Advertisements between Eurostat and CEDEFOP in the context of the Trusted Smart Statistics Web Intelligence Hub.
Given its success in 2017, a second round of the European Big Data Hackathon was carried out in 2019 as a satellite event of the NTTS 2019 Conference.