We are excited to add a new prize to the 2017 Eureka Prizes line-up in recognition of a growing and impactful area of work – data science.

The Eureka Prize for Excellence in Data Science, sponsored by the University of Technology Sydney will award AU$10,000 to an individual or team who have made either breakthrough discoveries in data science or a significant impact with their research into data science.

To mark the creation of this prize, the Eureka Prizes team asked UTS Executive Director of Data Science, Distinguished Professor Chengqi Zhang to share his insights with us.

Eureka Prizes: Why is this prize an important addition to the Eureka Prizes program?
Professor Zhang: This prize is an exciting addition because data science is not only a hot area of research, it’s also a very important research area for theory, technologies and applications. You can already see the influence of data science, transforming entire industries from oceanography, medicine and physics to market research.

Eureka Prizes: What impact is data science already having?
Professor Zhang: The impact of data science is very real – both in its application to every conceivable industry, but also in its ability to enable cutting-edge technologies like mobile and cloud computing. Data science research is also fundamental for any progress on modern artificial intelligence research.

Eureka Prizes: What’s the future for data science?
Professor Zhang: Data science as a rapidly evolving field that can influence the world in ways that we can currently only dream of. Data is becoming bigger, faster, and increasingly complex. Over the coming years, data science theories and technologies must continually be progressed in order to adapt to such changes.

Eureka Prizes: What advice do you have for people entering this prize?
Professor Zhang: Judges will be marking against the set criteria and will be looking for two key things: sound theories in data science and ‘big impact’ – evidence that your research is making a splash in the real world. I hope the introduction of this prize will stimulate more world-class work by Australian researchers and also encourage researchers to collaborate with other domain knowledge experts to ensure data science becomes as powerful as it has the potential to be.

For full details of UTS Eureka Prize for Excellence in Data Science, and the 14 other prizes across the categories of Research and Innovation, Leadership, Science Engagement and School Science please visit the Eureka Prizes website.

There are a number of resources available to assist entrants, nominators and assessors, including our FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions) and tips from judges and past winners to help you create a stand out entry.