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Malaysian millennials win the ASEAN Data Science Explorers competition

AvantiKumar | Dec. 2, 2017
This is the first year that the ASEAN DSE has been organised across all 10 ASEAN member states - the result of a strategic partnership between the ASEAN Foundation and SAP.

Malaysian winners in Jakarta

Photo: Thean Su Mei (far left) and Wong Feng Ming (far right) did Malaysia proud by winning the ASEAN Data Science Explorers 2017. With them are (from second right) SAP Southeast Asia president and managing director Claus Andresen, ASEAN deputy secretary general (socio-cultural community) His Excellency Vongthep Arthakaivalvatee and ASEAN Foundation executive director Elaine Tan.

 

  Two Malaysian millennials garnered the top spot at the ASEAN Data Science Explorers 2017 competition held recently in Jakarta, Indonesia.

Team 'ASEANalysts' - comprising participants Thean Su Mei and Wong Feng Ming from Monash University Malaysia - emerged the ASEAN champion at the regional face-off.

Their project, focusing on improving primary education, is aligned to the United Nation's Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) of inclusive and quality education for all. Both participants are current students from Monash University.

This is the first year that the ASEAN DSE was organised across all 10 ASEAN member states as part of the strategic partnership between the ASEAN Foundation and SAP. The aim of this initiative is to prepare today's youth for tomorrow's world.

The initiative encourages participants to deliver data-driven insights which highlight issues in ASEAN across six United Nation Sustainable Development Goals, namely (1) good health and well-being, (2) quality education, (3) gender equality, (4) clean water and sanitation, (5) decent work and economic growth, and (6) sustainable cities and communities.

Power of data

Participants were encouraged to harness the power of data to come up with impactful and constructive insights that can lead to innovative solutions to societal problems.

Meanwhile, the first runners up was team Omotesando, comprising team members Febe Epafras and Vida Cornelius from the University of Indonesia. Their project on 'financial inclusion through branchless banking' is aligned to the United Nation's Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) of decent work and economic growth for all.

The team from Thailand, Bangkok Brothers, comprising team members Pachara Aungsusuknarumol and Krittanut Jirathawong from Chulalongkorn University, came in third place for their project on 'gender divide in ASEAN countries. Their project is aligned to the United Nation's Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) of achieving gender equality.

"The winning teams have come up with some innovative solutions that showcase the potential of our ASEAN youths to own the issues that they have chosen to address. Through this competition, we have been able to witness the passion and commitment that our ASEAN youths have towards driving a sustainable future for this community," said ASEAN Foundation executive director Elaine Tan.

Investing in the next generation

"2017 marks the 50th anniversary of the founding of ASEAN and the 20th anniversary of the ASEAN Foundation. The success of the ASEAN DSE competition is a great proof point highlighting the value of investing in the next generation, and we are pleased to continue the partnership and this programme with SAP into 2018," she added.

Students who had registered for the programme earlier in the year gained access to ASEAN datasets as well as the SAP Analytics Cloud platform, which allowed them to analyse the data and derive insights. The SAP Analytics Cloud is a new generation software as a service (SaaS) that redefines analytics in the cloud by providing business intelligence (BI), predictive, and planning capabilities all within one tool. Using this cloud platform, the participants could analyse and visualize data to come up with their innovative recommendations. (Also see - SAP 'betting big' on Digital Malaysia vision: exclusive)

All the 10 teams at the regional finals were the top teams from the respective member ASEAN states, where they emerged as winners during the national finals held over the last month and a half.

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