We’re delighted that you are considering making an application to the Open Data Challenge Series. In order to make the process as simple as possible, we have put together a step-by-step guide below.
We use Collabfinder for our initial application process. It is a platform which allows people to register their interest in the Challenge, find other people to collaborate with and describe the idea they are working on. Each challenge is set up as a “group” on the Collabfinder platform.
We recommend that you set up your “profile” on Collabfinder first then set up your “project” (your application) within the Challenge group.
Setting up a Profile on Collabfinder
In order to use Collabfinder (unfortunately) you will need a Facebook account. If you do not have a Facebook account, or would prefer not to use your personal account then you might want to consider setting up a new Facebook account for this specific purpose.
Please note it is best to register on Collabfinder in one go. If you abandon the process half way and attempt to re-register at a later date there is a good chance that you will receive an error.
- Once you have a Facebook account, head over to http://collabfinder.com/ and click on the red "SIGN UP" button.
- You will then be asked to select a skill set. Please select any skill set closest to you (e.g. Product Manager, Developer, Designer, Writer), check the terms & conditions box, then click “Sign up with Facebook”. We would recommend that you choose something other than“Something Else” as this will log a request in the system and you cannot continue registration until this is resolved.
- Log in with your regular Facebook email and password.
- Click “OK” to link to Collabfinder with your Facebook account.
- Finally, fill in your basic details and click “Save my profile”
Once your profile has been set up you will then need to go to the group page for the relevant Challenge and select ‘Join this Group’. Your profile will then be registered as part of our group on Collabfinder and you will be able to see other people interested in the Challenge and set up a project. Below are links to the Collabfinder groups for Challenges that are accepting submissions.
Posting a Project to Collabfinder
Once you have an idea you can post this as a “Project” within our group. This will serve as your application but also allow you to advertise for new people to join you in developing your idea. You can advertise for specific skills sets and people will then approach you if they are interested.
Please be aware that any project which is live in the group by the deadline for applications will be treated as an application to the Challenge. Therefore we suggest that with include all the necessary information for an application from the first time you set up your “Project”
Before you submit your project, please make sure that you are eligible to take part in the Challenge and are able to fulfil the key judging criteria. You are able to read the full Entry and Judging criteria pages online.
What do I need to put in my project description?
In order to write the best application for the Challenge, you will need to include the following elements in your CollabFinder project description:
A clear description of your project. You will need to provide a clear and concise description of your project. In writing your project description you should refer to the Judging Criteria which will be used by the Judges at the Creation Weekend and at the Final. Being aware of these at an early stage will help you build a project which has a good chance of succeeding in the competition.
Link(s) to the open data data set(s) which you will be using. As this is an open data challenge this aspect is particularly important. This link must be directly to a data set which is released under an open license.
Please also remember to:
Include a well-formatted title for your project - which is clear and appealing.
Clearly link the members of your team.
Posting my Project
Once you have your project text follow the steps below to create a live project in the Collabfinder group:
To post a project, log in to Collabfinder and select “ADD A PROJECT” in the top right hand corner.
Fill in the information required at each step, clicking “Next” when complete. Remember to include which source(s) of Government open data you will be using!
- Finally, preview your project and make sure you are happy and click “PUBLISH PROJECT”.
Don’t forget to add yourself and your project to the correct group in order to make sure your project is easily findable.
Remember to check back regularly for feedback and comments - you project will be viewable to anyone in the group so you will often find offers to help and collaboration or constructive comments in the comment beneath your project!
- You can change or edit your project as many times as you like. Just do it before deadline specified for each individual Challenge.
What happens next?
We will advertise on the relevant challenge group the deadline for applications in the introductory text. At this time, we will assess each application based on the content posted on Collabfinder and choose the successful teams and individuals. We will leave a comment on your project informing you of your application result,
You will then be invited to attend a meet up and the Creation Weekend. To find out more about Creation Weekends, please check out our blog.