(Photo Credit: U.S. Army) VIEW ORIGINAL

WASHINGTON – On 11 January, 2021, the U.S. Army kicked-off its premier Data Science Competition. The competition will run for thirty days and the winning team will be selected in May. This year, 15 teams are competing to predict the materiel readiness of the M2A3 Bradley fighting vehicle.

The Deep Green competition is designed to engage the data analytics community and challenge them to help solve the many pressing and complex problems the Army faces. Each of the 81 participants this year will work with industry-leading experts in a collaborative learning environment. The participants include Data Scientists, AI Engineers, Statisticians, and Operations Research analysts. They will all enjoy the opportunity to improve their skills and knowledge, and have a lot of fun as they develop data-driven approaches that improve the business of the Army.

Mr. Bakari Dale, Director of the Office of Business Transformation (OBT) - Enterprise Data Analytics Office, says, “the driving principle behind the Deep Green Challenge is to open a door for Army and DOD analytics experts to participate in sharing their innovative ideas, improve their skills in data science, and serve as a competitive data science professional development platform in the Army.”

Preparation for this year’s challenge began early in September as the Office of the Assistant Secretary of the Army for Acquisition, Logistics, and Technology(ASAALT), Office of Business Transformation (OBT), and RAND assessed the feasibility and potential return on investment of developing a new readiness model. After the central challenge of the competition was identified, sponsor organizations proceeded to work with the Deep Green team to condition a unique and complex dataset that would test the participant’s skill.

Putting on a competition like this is a lot of work, but the value it creates makes it worth it. As Deep Green’s program Manager, COL Eric Richardson, says, “we need to ensure that the Army is ready for future challenges moving forward. This competition will help us identify and overcome these challenges in the following years.”

When this year’s competition is over, the results, lessons learned, return on investment, and impact of the winning model will be presented to the Army Analytics Board (AAB) and shared with the rest of the Army. We can’t wait to see what happens and look forward to the innovations and improvements these teams come up with.