Technology Spain , España, Wednesday, February 17 of 2021, 15:46

CoronaSurveys, selected as Finalist in Pandemic Response Challenge

The project, led by researcher Antonio Fernández Anta (IMDEA Networks Institute), is among the 48 finalist teams from 17 countries selected in the $500K Pandemic Response Challenge sponsored by Cognizant

IMDEA Networks Institute/DICYT XPRIZE, the world’s leader in designing and operating incentive competitions to solve humanity’s grand challenges, in partnership with Cognizant, one of the world’s leading technology and professional services companies, have announced that 48 teams from 17 countries are advancing to the final round of the $500K Pandemic Response Challenge. Teams competing in Phase 2 will develop artificial intelligence-driven models (courtesy of supporting partner AWS) to prescribe actions for safely reopening society and limiting economic impact while minimizing COVID-19 transmissions (conclusion of the challenge: February 26, 2021).


The Pandemic Response Challenge aims to harness the power of data and Artificial Intelligence in equipping policymakers, health officials, and business leaders with insights and guidance necessary to implement public safety measures and safely deliver the vaccine, maximizing their ability to keep local economies open while minimizing potential virus breakouts. Additionally, organizers hope the Challenge will advance the use of AI and data in addressing other humanitarian challenges. Finalist teams were selected from 104 semifinalists from 28 countries following an independent judging panel’s assessment of teams’ predictions of COVID-19 transmission rates and patterns.



Among these participants, CoronaSurveys, led by Antonio Fernández Anta, Research Professor at IMDEA Networks and project promoter since March 2020, is one of the 2 only Spanish finalists. CoronaSurveys is a collaborative endeavour from several universities and research institutions, with data about COVID-19 cases collected via anonymous open surveys. The results present estimations on the incidence and evolution of COVID-19 (and for vaccinated persons or for those unwilling to be vaccinated) obtained from this data, using the Network Scale-up Method.


Amir Banifatemi, Chief Innovation and Growth Officer of XPRIZE notes: “Within a very short time frame, this challenge has shown encouraging results that leverage Artificial Intelligence at the service of social impact”.




XPRIZE, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, is the global leader in designing and implementing innovative competition models to solve the world’s grandest challenges. Active competitions include the $100M XPRIZE Carbon Removal, $20 Million NRG COSIA Carbon XPRIZE, the $10 Million Rainforest XPRIZE, the $10 Million ANA Avatar XPRIZE, the $5 Million IBM Watson AI XPRIZE, $5 Million XPRIZE Rapid Reskilling, $5 Million XPRIZE Rapid COVID Testing, and $500K Pandemic Response Challenge. For more information, visit