First and foremost, we hope that you and your close ones are staying safe in these difficult times. In order to minimise the strain on all participants and organisers due to the uncertainty around travel and health safety, we have decided to hold Astro Hack Week as a virtual event, on the original dates (Aug 31 - Sept 4). We are coordinating with the organisers of other conferences and hack weeks that are taking place over the next few months, in order to develop the tools and practices that will help make these events successful, inclusive, accessible, and fun. We believe we can organise a great Astro Hack Week with this new model.
Since travel is no longer a consideration, we are reopening the applications until July 1st, so please encourage your friends and colleagues to apply. Because facilitating a virtual event has its own challenges and requires additional facilitators, we will likely still have to limit the number of participants in order to be able to provide a welcoming environment. This remote hack week is an experiment, and the results will allow us to potentially scale up the workshop to larger groups in future years. We will announce the results of the selection process some time in mid-July.
We thank you for your patience and understanding, and we welcome any suggestions and thoughts, in particular on ways that we can make this event more accessible to you or other participants. We are looking forward to hearing from you, and, like every year, we are excited to see what fun and interesting projects happen during this Astro Hack Week.
Astro Hack Week announcement
Applications are open for the seventh Astro Hack Week! Due to this unprecedented times, the 2020 edition will be held completely remotely from August 31 to September 4, 2020. All scientists, including graduate students, senior undergraduates, faculty, postdocs, as well as anyone whose work relates to astronomy outside academia, are invited to apply to attend. We aim to select a diverse set of participants who span astronomy, adjacent fields like physics and methodological fields like statistics and machine learning, as well as the full range of novices to experts in data science-related topics.
Due to the interactive nature of the workshop and our space constraints, we expect to cap attendance at approximately 50 people. Astro Hack Week is a mixture of data analysis summer school and unconference-enabled collaborative research, with about 35% of the workshop dedicated to tutorials, and the rest to open project work. There are no formal prerequisites.
During tutorials, participants will learn practical skills in data science-related topics including statistical and machine learning methods crucial to modern astronomical data analysis. We welcome participants to bring their own research and development projects with them; Astro Hack Week is a great place to apply new skills and methods, and work with others to move these projects forward. It is also an opportunity to work on something new, and we encourage participants to apply their technical knowledge to outstanding problems in the astronomical community.
One of the goals of Astro Hack Week is to improve the inclusion and participation of researchers from underrepresented backgrounds in data-intensive astronomy. We are committed to building a positive and supportive environment where all participants can learn and collaborate.
For more information, please see our website at http://astrohackweek.org. The application form is available here, and will be open until July 1st. Selected participants will be notified by mid-July.
We hope to see you in August! Please forward this announcement to anyone who may be interested. Email us if you have any questions or concerns: email@example.com
Sincerely, the Astro Hack Week organizing committee: