On Friday, we took part in a charity sector hackathon. The event, held at various sites across the world, was based on the use of data to solve challenges identified by three charities. The Digital Catapult Centre North East & Tees Valley held the event at Sunderland Software Centre.

The Data

The three charities shared three different sets of data for the participants to analyse.

  • Multiple Sclerosis Society - Understanding Operational Effectiveness, using post code level data.

  • Roy Castle Lung Cancer Foundation – Improving Fundraising Effectiveness, using donor data.

  • World Migration Data by United Nations – Understanding impact on countries and their GDP by analysing patterns on migration.

We chose to work with the World Migration Data from the United Nations, and produce a visualisation based on a 3D globe which illustrated the migration flow of the world’s population.

The Hackathon

At the Hackathon, we had an idea for how to visualise such data, but no ideas on how to analyse it! We therefore teamed up with three individuals who were working with the same data. Dylan McKee, Nic Flynn and Alex Birch, had an idea to analyse the data based on the number of internally displaced persons. They had plotted their results on a chart, and we had plotted the existing data on an interactive 3D globe using D3.js.

After combing our results and using the same analysed data set, we presented our ideas to the judges of the challenge as a single team.

The Result

Unfortunately we weren’t chosen as the winners of the challenge, but we had a great day and it was very interesting to see all of the solutions proposed by the other teams!

You can find the application built by Dylan, Nic and Alex here, and you can find the application we developed as part of the challenge here.

Thanks to Naomi Morrow from the Digital Catapult Centre North East & Tees Valley for hosting the event at Sunderland Software Centre, and to Dylan, Nic and Alex for working with us on the challenge!