Industry trip wins Data Science students €25,000


YOUNG research students who won a major European data science competition have shared a prize of €25,000!

The Masters and PhD students – all formerly on the BSc Mathematics degree – jetted out to take part in the annual Datathon competition run by Galp, the giant Portuguese energy conglomerate.

The team of three PhD students – Mark Pieroni, Philippa McCabe, Patrick Riley – and MSc students Ryan Bellfield and Sabrina Marnell – produced a workable way to optimise the performance of the firm’s refinery process.

They shared top place with a team of chemical engineers from the University of Aveiro, beating six other teams from Spain and Portugal.

'Big Data'

With its focus on analytics and ‘Big Data’, the contest was fought out at the Sines Refinery in Portugal as part of the firm’s global strategy to ‘develop innovative solutions that improve operations and make Galp a smart company’.

Dr Ian Jarman, Head of the Data Science Research Centre at LJMU said: “This award is a good example of the high quality of our postgraduate researchers and their aptitude for professional and industry careers.

“We pride ourselves on creating a stimulating environment for postgraduates which offers real-world experiences such as Galp Datathon.”

Galp’s Director of Operations Carlos Silva said the company will now look at evolving the winning proposals to see “how far they can be translated into real solutions.”


The LJMU students were supported by lecturers Sandra Ortega Martorell and Ivan Olier Caparroso, who said: “I am very proud of our team. It was a real team work, everyone was on board and ready to deliver. This was definitely the key.” 

For more about the Masters in Data Science, go here.

IMAGE: Sabrina, Mark, Patrick, Philippa and Ryan with lecturer Ivan competed in Portugal.


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