Waseda students compete to predict results of Japan’s elections

Inaugural Data Science Competition to be held

Waseda University will hold its first Data Science Competition on July 27 (Sat), 2019. The challenge for its inaugural year will see teams of students ranging from high school to postgraduate levels presenting their predictions for the outcome of Japan’s Upper House Election on July 21 (Sun).

Data science is an increasingly vital skill across many fields of society and industry, and Waseda University, which recently established the Center for Data Science, is training experts with the extensive knowledge and practical skills in data science required to tackle complex contemporary global issues.

This competition at Waseda was organized to encourage more students to explore this promising field. The teams have been challenged to create prediction models using publicly available data and will be judged based on the accuracy and originality of their data analysis. The winning team will be announced on July 27 and will receive a grand prize of 100,000 yen, with a variety of other prize categories also recognizing different strengths in the teams’ entries.

Event details

Outline of the competition

The objective of this inaugural competition is to create the most accurate prediction for Japan’s Upper House Election on July 21 (Sun), 2019. Teams may use any publicly available data to create models that predict the parties’ vote shares for the proportional representation tier and the election outcome for candidates in the district tier of the election. The winners will be determined by the accuracy of the predictions and the evaluation of the prediction model by a panel of judges. Forecasts must be submitted before the polling day.

Teams are encouraged both to study and learn from well-established theories and methods of electoral forecasting, and to innovate using their own original ideas and hypotheses.

61 student teams with a total of 200 members have entered the competition. The top teams will be invited to present their models and methods in front of a panel of judges, with the grand prize and other prizes to be awarded to the best performing teams. In addition, all teams will give a poster presentation, and a poster prize will be determined mainly by popular votes from the audience.

The event will be held in both Japanese and English, with each team presenting their work in their preferred language.

Competition rules:

*IMPORTANT: Teams and event organizers are not allowed to publicly disclose their election forecasts until the election is over, as this would violate the Public Offices Election Law.

About the Center for Data Science

Established in December 2017, the Center for Data Science (CDS) maximizes Waseda’s strengths as a comprehensive research university and integrates knowledge from the sciences, the humanities, and the social sciences with data science. The purpose of CDS is to train data science experts who can create new knowledge and tackle complex global issues, as well as to leverage the overall research capabilities at Waseda University.

About the Center for Positive/Empirical Analysis of Political Economy

The Center for Positive/Empirical Analysis of Political Economy, funded by MEXT’s Top Global University Project, was established to systematically offer educational programs which meet the highest global standards in the fields of political science, economics, and managerial economics for students and researchers who can contribute to the global society as global citizens.


Center for Data Science
E-mail: [email protected]

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