Challenges And Opportunities Of Data In Africa: Autumn 2017 Voices from the Field Speaker Series

Chaitanya Balasubramanyam Brown Bag Series, Events

GWI is once again teaming up with the Center for African Studies and the Global One Health initiative to present Voices from the Field, a brown bag speaker series featuring multidisciplinary researchers from Ohio State who work in Africa. This semester’s theme, Challenges and Opportunities of Data in Africa, explores how research, teaching and extension efforts can capture the potential of data (collecting, sharing, communicating, securing) in an African context.

The series is intended to provide networking opportunities for faculty, students and members of the general public. All sessions will be held on Wednesdays from 12-1 in Enarson Classroom Building room 160 starting September 6. Participants are welcome to bring lunch and eat during the sessions.

Series Theme: Challenges and Opportunities for Data in Africa

Researchers working in Africa in any field—from social science to hydrology to epidemiology—need data to be able to develop and guide best practices and produce actionable scholarly results. Speakers will discuss the data challenges they face in their research in Africa and their strategies to surmount them. Examples could include challenges collecting data (scarcity of samples, cultural barriers, physical logistics), managing data (digital infrastructure), communicating the value or implications of data to stakeholders, and more. Speakers will also discuss some opportunities that they have made use of (serendipitously or intentionally) to collect data, such as crowdsourcing, pairing data capture with other unrelated activities, digital games, etc. By sharing best practices and notable “worst practices” in data collection, analysis, management, the series aims to foster a community of practice at Ohio State that would benefit those working in Africa and in other international settings.

Miss a Session? Catch It Later

New this semester: sessions will be streamed live and recorded using Adobe Connect. Streaming links appear in each session’s page (linked below) and on Facebook.

Autumn Semester 2017 Voices from the Field Brown Bag Speaker Series Lineup

Sept. 6
Maria Belu (Department of Veterinary Preventative Medicine)
Veterinary Data Collection in Ethiopia
Watch the talk

Sept. 13
Amanda Robinson (Department of Political Science)
“From Focus Groups to Field Experiments: A Decade of Data Collection in Malawi”

Sept. 20
Sui Chian Phang (Department of Evolution, Ecology and Organismal Biology)
“Cooperation and Collaboration to Meet Challenges of Research in a ‘No-Go’ Zone”

Sept. 27
Rebecca Garabed (Department of Veterinary Preventative Medicine)
“Stuck Between Two Extremes: Trying to Find Solutions That Work in the Field and in the Lab
Watch the talk.

Oct. 4
Fungisai Musoni (African and African-American Studies)
Measuring the Substantive Representation of Zimbabwean Women’s Issues in the National Legislature”
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Oct. 18
Audrey Sawyer (School of Earth Sciences) and Zaina Hussein (University of Dodoma)
“Between a rock and a hard place: Surveys of groundwater resources in rural Tanzania”
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Oct. 25
Ann O’Connell (College of Education and Human Ecology)
“Strengthening Research Methodology and Data Analysis Capacity in Higher-Education in Ethiopia: Challenges and Opportunities”
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Nov. 29
Marcel Yotebieng (College of Public Health)
Elimination of Mother-to-Child Transmission of HIV: Using Data in Real Time to Help Close the Gap in DR Congo

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The Democratic Republic of the Congo

Dec. 6
Balako Gumi Donde (Bule Hora University, Ethiopia)
One Health Concepts from Traditional Healers and Professional Perspectives: Implication for Practical Intervention in Pastoral Communities

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Postponed until Spring 2018

Leah Bevis (Agricultural, Environmental and Developmental Economics)
Household Surveys for Interdisciplinary Research: Challenges of Multidimensional Data Collection

Rudy L. Hightower (John Glenn College of Public Affairs)
“Building Capacity in System Dynamics in Africa: the Mandela Washington Fellowship Experience”

Sui Chian Phang (Department of Evolution, Ecology and Organismal Biology)
“Cooperation and Collaboration to Meet Challenges of Research in a ‘No-Go’ Zone”


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Photo: MajiTech Engineering.