Waishan Qiu (Ph.D. RS ’22) received the grand prize and first place at the 2020 Hack.asia virtual hackathon in the Cooking with Big Data Challenge. Hosted by Jardine Restaurant Group (JRG) and Microsoft Hong Kong, the challenge asked participants to develop innovative solutions leveraging Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Big Data to improve consumer experience and restaurant operations in the current contexts of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Qiu’s proposal FoodieXpress derived a framework for the 71 Pizza Hut locations throughout Hong Kong comprising of scripting data to create delivery demand predictions, rematch order dispatch, and computing the shareability of food order deliveries. He and other participants were given just 36 hours to compile and present an innovative strategy for representatives of the sponsored-companies JRG and Microsoft, in addition to executives from partnering companies including Accenture, JLL, and HSBC.
As a Ph.D. student in Regional Science, Qiu’s research interests lie in developing informatics and analytical tools to investigate dynamic interactions between people and space. At Cornell, he served as one of the fellows in the Mellon Collaborative Studies program, participating in the spring 2019 seminar Urban Unplanning: The City as Text. Before joining the Ph.D. program, he spent several years in research settings and laboratories, including the MIT SENSEable City Lab, MIT Center for Advanced Urbanism, and the Evidence for Policy Design at the Harvard Kennedy School.