Inaugural "AI for Life Sciences" Hackathon seeks solutions to soil health


The first "AI for Life Sciences" hackathon, hosted by Vienna-based software company Gradient Zero in collaboration with David Berry from DOME. This virtual coding competition aimed to integrate artificial intelligence in life sciences, specifically focusing on soil health.

The event, drawing participants from 37 countries, centered on using AI to analyze soil microbiomes. Teams were tasked with developing methods to better understand and predict soil biodiversity and its environmental impacts. This approach highlights the increasing potential of AI in solving global challenges.

A team at CeMESS played a pivotal role in conceptualizing the challenge. The collaboration with Gradient Zero facilitated an open-source environment, with the results being made available under the MIT license for further research and development.

A diverse group of participants showcased their talents, with the top prize awarded to a team from the University of Ibadan and the University of Nigeria, Nsukka. The success of this first edition paves the way for future events, with the next hackathon scheduled for 2024.

This series offers a platform for researchers and AI enthusiasts to address various challenges in the life sciences domain. For further details on the AI for Life Sciences series and upcoming events, visit