Wednesday, December 2, 2015

Eurostat Forecasting Competition Deadline Approaching

I have some serious reservations about forecasting competitions, at least as typically implemented by groups like Kaggle. But still they're useful and exciting and absolutely fascinating. Here's a timely call for participation, from Eurostat. (Actually this one is nominally for nowcasting, not forecasting, but in reality they're the same thing.) 

[I'm not sure why they're trying to shoehorn "big data" into it, except that it sounds cool and everyone wants to jump on the bandwagon. The winner is the winner, whether based on big data, small data, or whatever, and whether produced by an econometrician, a statistician, or a data scientist. I'm not even sure what "Big Data" means, or what a "data scientist" means, here or anywhere. (Standard stat quip: A data scientist is a statistician who lives in San Francisco.) End of rant.]

Big Data for Official Statistics Competition launched - please register by 10 January 2016


The Big Data for Official Statistics Competition (BDCOMP) has just been launched, and you are most welcome to participate. All details are provided in the call for participation:
Participation is open to everybody (with a few very specific exceptions detailed in the call).
In this first instalment of BDCOMP, the competition is exclusively about nowcasting economic indicators at national or European level.
There are 7 tracks in the competition. They correspond to 4 main indicators: Unemployment, HICP, Tourism and Retail Trade and some of their variants.
Usage of Big Data is encouraged but not mandatory. For a detailed description of the competition tasks, please refer to the call.

The authors of the best-performing submissions for each track will be invited to present their work at the NTTS 2017 conference (the exact award criteria can be found in the call).

The deadline for registration is 10 January 2016. The duration of the competition is roughly a year (including about a month for evaluation). For a detailed schedule of submissions, please refer to the call.

The competition is organised by Eurostat and has a Scientific Committee composed of colleagues from various member and observer organisations of the European Statistical System (ESS).

On the behalf of the BDCOMP Scientific Committee,

The BDCOMP organising team