Fishackathon 2018

UBC’s Institute for the Oceans and Fisheries hosted the Vancouver city site to hold Fishackathon 2018. This international competition was held three additional Canadian cities, as well as cities in over 30 other countries. First organized by the US Secretary’s Office of Global Partnerships in 2014, Fishackathon inspires the creation of digital solution to address sustainable ocean and fisheries challenges.

Overfishing and other serious problems harm marine environments and can devastate already struggling small scale fishing marketplaces and communities, many of them in the developing world. Protections exist, but actual enforcement faces major obstacles. To combat this, Fishackathon brings together concerned designers, developers, and subject matter experts for a weekend to build practical tech solutions to endemic problems defined by the world’s most respected fisheries experts.

Teams were given challenge sets, designed by Fishackathon partners, and gathered on February 10-11, 2018 to execute on the design and development of these projects. Expert mentors helped them hone their ideas into projects that would solve actual (rather than imagined!) problems, and then the teams worked through the night to create their demos for a panel of distinguished judges, in a timed competition.

(l tor right): Muhammed, Tim, Jordan, Noelia. Not pictured, Santiago.

Team Grow Fish won the Vancouver event with their demo that focused on fish feed for aquaculture. The team was made up of IOF PhD candidates Muhammed Oyinlola, Santiago de la Puente, and Tim Cashion, as well as visiting student Noelia Valderrama, and UBC Masters of Data Science candidate, Jordan Dubchak.

The team’s project will now move on to the global finals, and we wish them luck.

Mentors:
Dalal Al-Abdulrazzak, Seafood Specialist, Ocean Wise
Dyhia Belhabib, Scientific Advisor, EcoTrust Canada
Yaxi Hu, PhD candidate, UBC Land and Food Systems
Joseph Lee, Co-Founder and Chief Product Officer, Coastline Market
Weldon Montgomery, Consular Officer, US. Consulate Vancouver
Rashid Sumaila, Professor, UBC Institute for the Oceans and Fisheries

Judges
Dalal Al-Abdulrazzak, Seafood Specialist, Ocean Wise
Weldon Montgomery, Consular Officer, US. Consulate Vancouver
Matthew Pattinson, Startup Leader, Empowered Startups Ltd.
Sarah Welborne, Acting Consul General, US Consulate Vancouver

Sponsors of the event include: the U.S. Department of State, Hackernest, the Government of Canada (Department of Fisheries and Oceans), Amazon Web Services (AWS), .co, hover, Kicking Horse Coffee, OpenHQ, Vancouver Aquarium, and UBC’s Institute for the Oceans and Fisheries who provided the venue.