WiDS Datathon puts Romania on the world map of Data Science
The international competition “Datathon Women in Data Science”, organized by Think Thank 360 under the auspices of Stanford University, put Romania on the world map in the field of data science. Romania becomes the second country in Europe to host such an international competition in the field of data science. Romanian teams, made up of women with substantial involvement, compete with traditional data science teams in 85 countries, responding to the challenges posed by climate change and the need to manage energy properly.
Datahon WiDS Romania is supported by the US Embassy in Bucharest, and Pamela Ward, its Trade Adviser, said: “The Biden government emphasizes that gender equality is essential for economic growth and development, democracy and security throughout the world. The US Embassy especially supports women in the development of technology in Romania.“
72 students from ASE Bucharest and AFT Sibiu, along with teams of young people from the private sector, entered the competition, realizing the importance of acquiring the skills to transform and process data into information and the need to prepare for the technological challenges of the future.
Ghita Barsan, Rector of AFT Sibiu, said: “The first steps in artificial intelligence and data science were taken in AFT before the competition, but thanks to Datathon we managed to form a strong core in the field of data science, which will grow rapidly and will identify solutions to problems in the military system. The pandemic has taught us all to adapt technologically, but Datathon is cementing its knowledge and providing practical applicability in the field of national security. ”
The discussions during the opening of the WiDS Datathon Romania competition addressed the need to apply data science in related fields such as agriculture, environment, education, energy, entrepreneurship. The need to implement data science in the government sector was supported by the Minister of Agriculture, Adrian Chesnoiu, Secretary of State in the Ministry of Environment, Robert Szep, Minister Adviser, Ministry of Entrepreneurship and Tourism, Liviu Rogojinaru and Răzvan Nicolescu, member of the board of the European Institute of Innovation and Technology. They emphasized the need to digitize the administrative apparatus, the importance of scientifically substantiating government decisions and, last but not least, the transformation of future challenges into opportunities for Romania.
The private sector has taken concrete steps in the field of data science, relying on significant investments that reduce the impact of their operations on the environment and increase the degree of digitization and operation of processes.
Alina Popa, CFO OMV Petrom, said: “New technologies and digitalisation are fundamental to the progress of the energy sector. We believe that the road to cleaner energy begins with innovation and digitalisation, so these are key factors in our 2030 strategy.“
Thomas Kolarik, COO of BCR, claimed that “data analysis is essential in the banking sector, so that customer behavior can be anticipated. Data science offers the possibility of internationalization and interconnectivity with similar structures outside the borders “, emphasizing that gender equality is promoted and encouraged within BCR: “Over 56 percent of the bank’s management is represented by women, and in the tech field the percentage is over 40 percent employees. We support and promote gender equality and this is seen in our work.“
The Datathon competition precedes the World Conference on Women in Data Science (WiDS) on March 7, 2022, where the winners of the national and global competition will be presented.
Datathon WiDS Romania is supported by Wolters Kluwer Romania, strategic partner, in collaboration with ASE Bucharest, academic partner and AFT Sibiu, academic partner Central Region as well as the Embassy of the United States of America in Romania. The main sponsors of the event are: OMV Petrom, Banca Comercială Română, Google Romania, Adobe Romania, eMAG, UNIQA, MHS Trucks, Data Booster and Thoughtworks. Partners are Automobile Bavaria (BMW), Aerotravel, Lotus Cosmetics, Radiocom, Adara Spa, Starbucks and the employers’ entities: the National Confederation for Female Entrepreneurship CONAF and the Association for the Development of Local Entrepreneurship ADAA.
The media partners of the event are: AGERPRES, Ziarul Bursa, Ziarul News, The Diplomat Bucharest, Economistul, Romania Durable, Club Economic, Money.ro, Financial Intelligence.