Rules for Participation

Team Composition and Participation

  • Any student that is in one of the invited South African Universities can participate.
  • The student needs to be between 1st and 3rd year. This is done to ensure that fairness is maintained amongst the old Technikon vs. Universities structures.
  • All the students need to be above the age of 18.
  • The groups can be comprised of a maximum of four (4) people. This must be balanced in terms of gender. We will not accept teams that are made up solely of one gender.
  • The team must also have two (2) reserve members incase one of the main team members needs to be replaced.
  • Each team needs to have an assigned mentor from the university.

Team Roles


  • The main role of the mentor is to be the communication link between DIRISA and the student participants.
  • The mentor is not expected to contribute to the students project except by providing them with guidance. No assistance of coding or presentation will be allowed.


  • The student is the main participant of the challenge.
  • The student needs to adhere to the competition rules and ensure that their project is completed by the end of the allocated time period.
  • The student can rely on the mentor for verbal guidance. The student can also consult DIRISA staff for additional guidance.

Datathon Rules

  • Students are required to use atleast two (2) datasets.
  • They can then use any dataset(s).
  • Only open data should be used.
  • Students cannot use any already existing code that was written before the datathon.
  • There are no restrictions in terms of programing languages, frameworks, libraries or API’s. You are welcome to use any that you are comfortable and familiar with.
  • There are no restrictions in terms of the research area that your solution addresses. The solution just needs to be within the realms of the theme.
  • Each morning or afternoon of the competition the teams will be given 15 minutes to present what they plan to do for the day, what they did the previous day and what challenges they have faced

Solution Ownership

  • Students need to create original solutions, prototypes, datasets, scripts, or other content, materials, discoveries or inventions.
  • Students retain ownership of all intellectual and industrial property rights (including moral rights) to their solutions.
  • As a condition of participating and submitting an entry to the datathon, the students and mentor grant the DIRISA organizers and its subsidiaries, without restrictions, a perpetual, irrevocable, worldwide, royalty-free, and non-exclusive license to use, reproduce, adapt, modify, publish, distribute, publicly perform, create a derivative work from, and publicly display the solution.
  • Students and Mentors represents and warrants that, to the best of his or her knowledge, any work product is their own original work and is not within the intellectual property rights of any third party. Under no circumstances will Datathon Organizer be liable to you or any third party for any damages, direct or otherwise, arising out of use of this hackathon work product.

If you do not meet any of our requirements, you will be disqualified.