Clouds In the field stories

Cloud assistance for Maltese COVID-19 study

How do COVID-19 measures affect our wellbeing? And how will a persons’ emotional status influence to which degree he or she complies with government regulation during a pandemic?

These are the basic questions that Dr. Claude Bajada at the University of Malta is set to investigate. In 2020, he was contacted by researchers involved in an international study. They requested data from Malta to be included in their study. After having provided the data, Claude Bajada came up with ideas on how to analyse the large dataset through use of machine learning techniques.

Still, the road forward was not straightforward. As so often, the two limiting factors for initiating a research project proved to be human resources and infrastructure.

“As a researcher from a small country, I find myself fighting Goliath in the shape of institutions from larger countries when I am applying for funding,” Claude Bajada notes.

However, just as David did bring down his mighty adversary, Dr. Bajada prevailed and is now heading a research team. The funding has come from the European Union project Open Clouds for Research Environments (OCRE). Behind the EU project is a consortium consisting of European regional R&E network organisation GÉANT, the leading international physics organisation CERN, provider of Earth Observation data handling RHEA, and digital community builder Trust-IT Services.

Submitted by Morten Anderson

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