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150 local constestants to compete in 2018 Fishackathon Taipei for global final

The Eye on Taiwan news staff

The Taiwan area contest of 2018 Fishackathon will begin in Taipei on Saturday to select the winners who will represent the island to take part in the global final.

A total of 150 people in 37 teams will compete in the two-day event in Taipei, which is held to bring the world together to protect life in waters, make fisheries and aquaculture more sustainable and equitable, and preserve the planet’s future, according to co-sponsor the American Institute in Taiwan (AIT).

Teams of volunteer coders and technologists take a weekend-long challenge to consider problem statements from fisheries experts around the world and present usable solutions, organizers said.

Photo taken from Fishackathon website

An expert panel of judges will evaluate the presentations to select a winner from each Fishackathon contest site, and a grand prize is awarded to the global winning team, they said.

According to AIT, which represents the US interests in the absence of formal ties, Taiwanese participants include students, coders, developers, and those who are enthusiastic about addressing sustainable fishery challenges.

AIT said its branch office will also host a Fishackathon event in Kaohsiung, southern Taiwan and the first place winner from each city will be eligible to compete for the global grand prize.

AIT is partnering with the American Innovation Center, the Fisheries Agency of the Council of Agriculture of the Executive Yuan, Taipei City Government, Microsoft Taiwan, and the Syntrend Startup Foundation to host the 2018 Fishackathon in Taipei.

Amazon Web Services (AWS) is a global co-sponsor for the 2018 Fishackathon.  Other partners involved for the Taipei event include Boulder Media, the Foundation for Women’s Rights Promotion and Development, IBM Taiwan, the Institute of Marine Affairs and Resource Management of National Taiwan Ocean University, the Institute of Oceanography of National Taiwan University, Intel, iThome, National Geographic, Ocean Says, PIXNET, Taiwan Design Center, and TVBS Foundation.

First organized by the U.S. Secretary’s Office of Global Partnerships in 2014, Fishackathon has inspired the creation of digital solutions to address sustainable fisheries challenges, according to the Fishackathon website.

Overfishing and other serious problems harm marine environments and can devastate already-struggling, small-scale fishing marketplaces, and communities, many of them in developing countries. Protections exist, but actual enforcement faces major obstacles, it said.

To tackle this, Fishackathon has invited thousands of concerned designers, developers, and experts to build practical tech solutions to endemic problems defined by the world’s most respected fisheries experts, it noted.

The Taipei team won the global grand prize in 2016.

An opening ceremony of the event will be held at Star Rocket in Syntrend Creative Park at No. 2, 11th Floor, Citizens Boulevard, section 3, Taipei 9:00-9:30 am on Saturday, while the closing ceremony will also be held at the same place at 4:00-4:30 pm on Sunday.

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