Healthy Food Access Data Hackathon

San Diego Food System Alliance Healthy Food Access committee participated in the San Diego Regional Data Library's Data Hackathon Contest. 125 students and professionals participated in week-long contest to utilize their analytic skills to solve social problems including addressing hunger and education achievement gaps.

The Healthy Food Access committee submitted research questions involving:

  • Demographic personas of food insecure - who are food insecure individuals and what are their stories?
  • Public safety of food distribution - how much crime exposure is there for those who travel to food distribution sites?
  • Accessibility of food resources -  what is the availability of food (hours, distance, etc), particularly healthy food? 

The research questions obtained insightful data analysis submissions from 5 student/ professional teams. Two teams were selected to compete in the final awards ceremony on March 10th. UCSD MAS Data Science Team - Time and Space Analysis of Food Distribution (presentation and narrative) won first place and Flash and Shadow - A Visual Geographical Study on Location, Availability, Public Transportations and Crime Exposure (presentation and narrative) took home the third place. 


The UCSD MAS Data Science team presented their results at the April 7th SDFSA meeting and discussed their interest in continuing their work during the summer to develop technology solutions around food access. In addition, other teams and professors have also expressed an interest in continuing to work with us on data/ technology solutions. We are truly excited about the potential for continued partnership with San Diego Regional Data Library and the talented analysts/ engineers!