The Conference on the Future of Europe (COFE) is a pan-European participatory initiative composed of multiple interlinked events and debates where citizens, civil society and all other stakeholders (including local, regional and national authorities) from Europe can share and discuss their ideas, in the 24 official EU languages, on what they expect from the European Union. It offers a unique opportunity for EU Institutions to directly hear from citizens on Europe’s challenges and priorities.
The COFE Datathon is a data mining competition organised by the European Commission in the context of the Conference on the Future of Europe. The aim of the competition is to foster the analysis of the Conference open data set to discover new and rich insights around the public contributions submitted by citizens to the digital platform.
When and where will it take place?
The COFE Datathon will start on the 1st of March 2022 with an online kick-off event, and will last until 20 March 2022. During this period, teams participating in the datathon will be able to use their own tools to perform the analysis.
On 30 March 2022, there will be a closing event, with a pitch session where each team will have 3 minutes to explain their approach and main findings, and an awards ceremony.
Who can participate?
The COFE Datathon is a competition open to participation to any team from anywhere in Europe, composed of a minimum of two and a maximum of five members. Teams can be composed by individuals of private companies, universities, research institutes, public entities, associations, etc. The competition is not open to staff working in the EU institutions, agencies, bodies, partnering organisations or external contractors.
Registrations will be open from 1 February 2022 to 20 February 2022 (midnight CET). Teams interested in participating are requested to fill in this registration form indicating the name of the team, member’s names and nationality, and contact email.
What are the analytical challenges?
The competition consists of 5 challenges. Each challenge is independent from the others and evaluated individually. Participating teams can choose which (and how many) of the challenges they want address:
- Challenge 1: Keyword extraction from ideas - represent an idea or a set of ideas by a set of most representative keywords.
- Challenge 2: Idea clustering - group ideas expressing similar proposals.
- Challenge 3: Topic detection - extract from ideas the most often mentioned specific propositions.
- Challenge 4: Stance detection - detect if a comment is in favour or against of the corresponding idea.
- Challenge 5: Open task - this task can be summarized as “try whatever approach to make the data relevant”.
Detailed technical information will be provided on the start of the competition.
The dataset used in the competition will be the one publicly accessible from the COFE digital platform. All data will be anonymised – usernames and user geolocations will be replaced by anonymous alphanumerical ids.
The datasets for analysis will be provided to all teams in the beginning of the competition (1st March 2022) by the COFE Datathon organisation via email / ftp.
Selection of the winner teams
A winning team will be selected in each of the five challenges. The winners will be evaluated based on the results presented and the report produced explaining the model / methods used. Detailed guidelines will be provided on the start of the competition.
Each challenge is independent and will be evaluated separately (n.b. teams can choose how many and which challenges they want to address).
The winners of each challenge will be decided by a jury of 5 data specialists chaired by the European Commission’s Join Research Centre.
Will the outcomes of the datathon be linked to the Conference?
All relevant findings of the winning teams will be made available and given visibility on the Conference’s digital platform.
1st February 2022: Announcement of the COFE Datathon competition. Registration period is open.
20 February 2022 (midnight CET): Close of registrations.
1st of March 2022: Launch of the COFE Datathon. The competition starts with an online event presenting the competition and explaining the different challenges. Datasets are sent to the teams.
25 March 2022: Deadline for the teams to submit contributions to the different challenges of the datathon.
30 March 2022: Closing event with pitch session and awards ceremony.