Data Science for Social Good 2022

Source: DSSGx UK

Table of Contents

DSSGx in Germany

After organising the DSSG at the University of Warwick and the Alan Turing Institute for 3 years in the UK - we are now bringing this concept to Germany.

DSSG helps not-for-profit organisations and government bodies to achieve more with their data by improving their services, interventions and outreach so that they can fulfil their mission of bettering the world and people’s lives.

DSSG achieves this through a 12-week programme training students to create industry-standard data science products in collaboration with government agencies and NGOs, in projects with a positive social impact. It gives non-for-profit organisations and government bodies unprecedented access to inspiring, top-tier data science talent and builds their capacity to use cutting-edge quantitative methods to address important societal challenges in education, health, energy, public safety, transportation and economic development etc.

In 2022 the DSSGx fellowship will be coming to Germany to be held in person by University of Kaiserslautern and German Research Center for Artificial Intelligence (DFKI). This is an affiliate programme of the DSSG Foundation’s summer fellowship in the US at Carnegie Mellon University (CMU), USA.

Join as a participant

If you have a passion for data science, care about the social good, and love to work in an international team of top talent, you are invited to APPLY once the applications open for 2023 edition. This would be a joint application for CMU and for TU Kaiserslautern & DFKI programmes. We will work together with CMU and University of Warwick to provide an even more stimulating experience for successful fellows.

FAQ for fellows.

Join as a project partner

If you’re a non-profit or government organisation with a data science challenge, you can apply to become a project partner.

We’re seeking projects that aim to tackle an important problem with high social impact that can be addressed with data and expertise provided by our partners. Project partners will need to support the team working on your project approximately one day per week. By the end of the programme, we aim to have delivered a software solution ready to be used in your organisation.

If you are participating with a project, we will be glad to help you work out your idea and a project outline. We will also be happy to assist you with your application. Just send us a short request with 2-3 three sentences about the goals of your organization or a possible project and briefly outline how you use the already existing data so far and what data you hold. Deadline for project applications is usually in February of each year, but this shouldn’t stop you from reaching out early. The best way to reach out is A good guilde on what makes a good project can be found here.

Please help us spread the word and share the call for projects with your network.

Express your interest here.

Here is our last Call for Partners, also available as Call for Partners (German).

Transparancy notice

Join as a technical mentor or project manager

For our summer fellowship, we employ full-time technical mentors and project managers (three months, fixed-term). As a mentor or project manager, you’ll work with top international data science talent on projects that really matter.

Technical mentors typically have a strong technical background, often a PhD in data science, computer science, statistics, social science or public policy, plus several years of industry experience. Technical Mentor Job Description

Project managers have a strong understanding of technology and data science projects, and several years of industry or consulting experience. Project Manager Job Description

To register interest for next year, please contact with a CV and short motivational statement.


Kaiserslautern is famous for technology and innovation. The town has gained a reputation in the past few years as a modern centre of science and information technology. It lies in south-western Germany, in the middle of the Palatinate Forest (great outdoors and mountain biking), and is just 50 kilometres from the neighbouring country of France, and 150 kilometres from Luxembourg.


The University of Kaiserslautern has gained high reputation in science, technology and industry in only a short period of time and holds top positions in Germany’s university ranking, for instance ranked 3rd in overall study situation for computer science. DSSG fits well within the university which offers a graduate program in Socioinformatics (deals with the analysis and modelling of the interaction between society and computer science, the co-evolution of social norms and processes and the supporting software).


The German Research Center for Artificial Intelligence (DFKI) was founded in 1988 as a non-profit public-private partnership. It has research facilities in Kaiserslautern, Saarbrücken and Bremen, a project office in Berlin, a Laboratory in Niedersachsen and branch offices in Lübeck and Trier. In the field of innovative commercial software technology using Artificial Intelligence, DFKI is the leading research center in Germany. The DFKI’s focus on application oriented basic research, DFKI develops product functions, prototypes and solutions in the field of information and communication technology.

At present, approx. 800 highly qualified researchers, administrators and 560 graduate students from more than 65 countries are contributing to more than 400 DFKI research projects. DFKI serves as a stepping stone to leading positions in industry and successful careers as founders of spin-off companies. Over the years, more than 160 staff members have been appointed professors at universities in Germany and abroad (more details).

It is known for applied and fundamental research as well as having one of the best robot football teams in the world.

Recent impactful projects

  • The PlasticObs project( with OPTIMARE Systems), is the first to use an AI system to detect plastic litter along bodies of water operationally and from the air in order to identify the main sources and distribution routes of the plastic (video details).

  • AI for emergency managment - from natural disaster to terror atacks

  • To develop new AI technologies and applications, the European Space Agency (ESA) and the German Research Center for Artificial Intelligence (DFKI) are establishing ESA_Lab@DFKI a joint research laboratory which recently emerged from the DFKI spin-off Vision Impuls among others, to offer solutions that provides solution for slum mapping, forest and farm management with earth observations. Other use cases currently pursued include the reduction in fertializer usage.

Fraunhofer-Institute for Industrial Mathematics

Among other departments, this is a centre for excellence in Quantuum Computing and has transated mathematical models in the real world. Recenetly has helped Biontech with the scaling of its productions. Another example of realword positive impact is that ITWM has developed a real-time decision support tool that evaluates the optimal compromise of too much and too little exposure in radio therapy.


We cannot talk of significantly contributing to changing the lives of millions of people without talking about technology. As information, Kaiserslautern is one of the only cities in its region to have received a prize under the Implementation of the 5G Technology. The company “Herzlich Digital”, established in 2017, is working hard in order to make Kaiserslautern a Smart City. It is not an option to believe that being a smart city is not an advantage. A majority of researchers have concluded that the future of cities lies within being a Smart City . After a competition under “Smart City Pilot Projects” organized by German Federal Ministry of the Interior, Building and Community (BMI), Kaiserslautern became one of the 13 German cities or municipalities selected in the first round. This enabled the city to be funded 15 million euros for the further development of the Smart City Pilot Projects. It is true that it is huge money for a population of 100,000 people, but this money can also be more beneficial if great people around the world decide to choose Kaiserslautern as either a place to be or a place to spend some time.

Life at Kaiserslautern


Kaiserslautern has an international flair and is situated close to the French and Luxembourgian borders. This town lies in the middle of the low-lying mountain range known as the Pfälzerwald, or Palatinate Forest. The science centre is renowned for technology and innovation. With everything close at hand, it’s an ideal place to study.


With the motto “Life tastes nice” - there is a vibrant restaurant and cafe area in Kaiserslautern


Ramstein Air Base is located in the German state of Rhineland-Palatinate (aka Rheinland-Pfalz) and is part of the Kaiserslautern Military Community – the largest American community outside of the United States.


Nice parks around the city such the city park and the Gartenschau.