November 16, 2020

Women in Data Hackathon 2020 – Most Creative Presentation

Luke Farrugia
Luke Farrugia Head of Marketing

Business challenge:

Equality and Diversity
Women in data

Most Creative Presentation Winners: Team MACS

Event Overview

TrueCue’s inaugural Women in Data Hackathon was attended by over 300 participants from 41 countries. This comprised of a mix of students, women returning to work, swapping industries, as well as those in the early stages of careers in data.

Attendees were also joined by 40 facilitators, who collectively boasted over 200 years-experience working in the field of data, from organisations including Google, Balfour, Virgin Media, Lego and the NHS.

Participants were separated into 40 teams, supported by a facilitator, with the task to analyse a global COVID-19 data set, before crafting research questions around COVID-19. This related to areas such effects of COVID-19 on those most impacted countries globally, predicted hotspots around the world and the effectiveness of restrictions put into place across communities.

Teams were then given two weeks to research and analyse data sets, with each team then tasked to submit a short presentation, showcasing their findings and recommendations. Not only did the hackathon provide an opportunity for members of the data science community to connect and address challenges presented by the pandemic but critically, it also shone a light on the importance of promoting diversity and inclusion in the data industry.

Judges of the finalists included, Libby Duane Adams, Chief Customer Officer & Co-Founder of Alteryx, Freya Holland, EMEA & International HQ Analytics Lead at Kraft Heniz, Nicole Johnson, Senior Consultant at T-Mobile, Jen Stirrup, CEO and Founder of Data Relish and James Don-Carolis, Managing Director of TrueCue.

Team MACS were named Most Creative Presentation, following their use of global governance data and a COVID-19 response tracker to compare pandemic responses in areas with female versus male leaders.

Meet The Team

Name: Zoë Turner

Profession: Senior Information Analyst

Organisation: Nottinghamshire Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust

A Bit About Me: I love learning and am insatiably curious about all things data. Having studied philosophy, I’ve found it can be applied in any subject and currently I’m interested in psychology and data science (with a bit of ethics thrown in naturally).

I’m very active in the NHS-R Community and have helped with events including the annual conference and teaching the introduction workshops. I’ve also joined the Association of Professional Healthcare Analysts board as a Non-Exec Director leading on Equality, Diversity and Inclusion. As such most of my conversations often turn to R, statistics, equality, or a combination of all three.

Name: Nancy Scott

Profession: HR Insight & Intelligence Assistant

Organisation: Surrey County Council

A Bit About Me: I’m a mum of 3 – my son has left home leaving just 2 teenage daughters to manage! I studied computing back in the days of floppy disks, so tech has come a long way since. I worked as a programmer for 13 years before a career break. I then worked in digital comms in charities, before deciding to move into data analytics. A crash course, renewing my Excel and SQL skills and learning Tableau basics, led me to my first data role with SCC where I’ve been for a year. In my spare time, I love hiking and ice skating!

Name: Anna Trichkine

Profession: Data and Insight Executive

Organisation: WhiteHat GB

A Bit About Me:

I’m always thinking about ways to make tech content more accessible and I love creating safe learning spaces.

I enjoy stop motion animation, problem solving, and finding ways to make the day to day fun (even in the world of data). This motivated me to create Data Sloth, my short animation series about a data loving sloth. Combined with my interest in new technologies, I find I always have something new to explore and learn about each week! 

Name: Shuyao Huang

Profession: Postgraduate, MSc Economics & Strategy for Business

Organisation: Imperial College Business School

A Bit About Me:

I am currently studying an Economics MSc at Imperial College London, having already achieved a Finance degree from University of Nottingham Ningbo China. Passionate about financial markets, I invest in equities and embrace data analysis to deliver informed research. I regard myself as a self-driven force in my internships in financial services and use a positive attitude and tireless energy to build and maintain relationship and facilitate collaboration. I have also co-founded an education start-up in China to promote investment literacy and women representation in finance among youths. During my free time, I enjoy playing table tennis and sharing low-calorie pastries baked, eating the rest.

Shuyao Huang - TrueCue Women in Data Hackathon Winner 2021

Name: Susie Crone

Profession: Data and Insight Executive

Organisation: Nestlé Nespresso

A Bit About Me: I am a CRM Executive for Nespresso, and also a Data Science Apprentice. I fell into data through a good friend and colleague at Snow and Rock, where I was originally a copy writer. In need of a Campaign Executive, she suggested I give the role a go. I was fortunate she invested the time and patience into training me.  After leaving Snow and Rock, I went on to build large data marketing campaigns for VW, before landing at Nespresso, where my transition from data campaigns to data science happened! In my spare time you can usually find me on my allotment growing vegetables!

Name: Christine Prout

Profession: Digital Testing and Optimisation Specialist

Organisation: ActionAid UK

A Bit About Me: I have worked in the digital charity sector for over 10 years and my most recent move to ActionAid UK in 2018 took me from a digital generalist to focussing on digital data and analytics. I am currently coming to the end of a data analytics and data science apprenticeship and am originally a biochemistry graduate from the University of Leicester.

Christine Prout - TrueCue Women in Data Winner 2020

A Word From Our Winners

Team MACS were thrilled to be shortlisted, and to go on to win Most Creative Presentation, especially when we saw the quality of the presentations of the other finalists and those who received special mentions.

Diverse in location, age and experience, Team MACS quickly identified each other’s strengths and we set about coming up with our hackathon question. Our initial idea had actually been around “How has Covid-19 affected women around the world?”, and we wanted to investigate this in terms of health, work/pay, caring responsibilities, crime/domestic abuse. However, this is where we hit our first challenge. We had all gone away with a category to research and came back with the same problem – a lack of available sex disaggregated data, also known as data blackouts.

Not to be easily discouraged, Team MACS went on to turn our original question on its head, and asked “Have female leaders had a positive effect on Covid-19 outcomes in their countries?”.

As a team we all enjoyed working with people from outside of our usual work or study circles and we learned that no matter what your background, level of experience or age, there is always something to be learned from others. Some of the team used Python in their analysis and were easily able to share their knowledge when needed. It wasn’t just technical skills though, we worked really well as a team, always listening to others’ viewpoints and questioning insights.

One of the great things about this Hackathon was the fact that women from all over the world were able to take part, and indeed one of our own team is from China. Using the wonders of Zoom and Slack, this wasn’t a problem regarding communication and we were able to keep in touch regularly, simply having to arrange meetings at a sensible time for everyone.

We all had great fun with our sixth team member, Data Sloth! Already being well versed in all things data, our animated friend helped us to present our findings in a new, creative light.

Overall we’ve learned a few things: Data isn’t always available, and that can be frustrating; It’s OK to be creative and do something a bit different with data presentation; You don’t need to be afraid of feeling unprepared or out of your depth, as there are always opportunities to learn as you’re going and to improve your knowledge.

Business challenge:

Equality and Diversity
Women in data
Luke Farrugia
Written by Luke Farrugia Head of Marketing

Luke is the Head of all things marketing at TrueCue. With an eclectic track record in planning and implementing comprehensive B2B and B2C growth marketing strategy, across a multitude of industries, including tech, music, travel and education, Luke loves supporting the analytics community with good information, good data and the capacity to derive good decisions, through the lens of TrueCue.

Case Study: Fighting COVID-19 with Data

Learn about how we’re helping the largest Sustainability and Transformation Partnership in the NHS, to use data analytics to improve their response to COVID-19 and save lives.

Download Case Study