Melbourne Business School News Immunisation Boosting Idea Wins First Annual Melbourne Business School Datathon

Immunisation Boosting Idea Wins First Annual Melbourne Business School Datathon

The public was the big winner at the Melbourne Business Analytics Datathon, with all six finalists using their unprecedented access to health, grocery and transaction data to identify unique ways to improve health policy and outcomes in Victoria.


The winning team ‘Ordinary Least Squires’ – comprised of Michelle Zhao (EYC3), Pui-Ching Lee (Quantium), and Brad Trewhella (Forethought Research) – were awarded the $12,500 main prize for their idea which identified regions where child immunisation rates were low in Victoria and proposed setting up mobile immunisation vans at popular shopping centres in these areas to boost local immunisation rates.

In the student category, the ‘Deep Thinking’ team of PhD students from the University of Melbourne and RMIT won $5000 for their idea of leveraging the data to identify leading causes of preventable deaths and make an appropriate intervention.

As part of the Datathon, more than 250 contestants in more than 60 teams analysed 500 million anonymous, aggregate card transactions, 100 million grocery baskets, 2 million Qantas Frequent Flyer members interests and persona, and Victorian Department of Health data on healthcare usage and incidence of disease to develop innovative data solutions which improve the health and productivity outcomes of Victoria.

In congratulating the School and sponsors for organising the Datathon, the Victorian Parliamentary Secretary to the Treasurer, Daniel Mulino, said the event confirmed the power of data analytics.

“The use of data is right at the front of government service delivery and decision making,” Mr Mulino said. “We need to use data far better than we are to make the right decisions, personalise our services to citizens, use infrastructure at higher utilisation rates and, critically, more intelligently evaluate how effective policies are.”   

Melbourne Business School Centre for Business Analytics Executive Director Mark Alexander said: the Datathon epitomised the Centres vision to ‘Transform decision making through business analytics’.

“By partnering with the Victorian Government and world-class brands such as SAS, AWS and Data Republic, we were able to attract Australia’s top analytics talent to develop innovative solutions very real problems by applying analytics to never-before-combined disparate data sets,” Mark said.