Sci-GaIA comes to Dar es Salaam
The third Sci-GaIA workshop will be held soon in Dar es Salaam. We’ve got over 100 registrants so far, and a great programme lined up, which means we’re very excited for this event.
In our previous events in Maputo and Dakar, we have had participants talk about the need for Openness, and how this improves research and society. Open Infrastructures, in particular Open Data and Open Science infrastructures underpin much of the advance in research fields, even though they are somewhat invisible to the general public or even research communities. Sci-GaIA is one of several projects which is working to improve access to these infrastructures, for researchers such as yourselves and your peers, and we’re really looking forward to showcasing the work that some of our “champions” have done during our recent hackfest. These should give some idea of how open infrastructures are enabling researchers and communities. In fact, we feel so strongly about Openness that we took a stand on the issue and published the Dakar Declaration on Open Science.
What do we mean by Open Infrastructures ?
When we say “Open infrastructures”, we are essentially the talking about combinations of tools and services which enable research. During the workshop, you’ll hear more about them (and we’re hoping this will be a two-way discussion), which include:
Some of these tools and services are in what we refer to as the “Open Commons” - things which we all need, but which we can’t provide by ourselves - whilst others may be built and shared by specific organisations or institutes. All of this comes together in what we term an “Open Science Platform” - you can see what we mean by this at www.sci-gaia.eu/osp
The most important infrastructure
However, the most important aspect is community, is people like you and I. Without people working together, collaborating and sharing, the fancy tools we have at our disposal will always be insufficient. It is the asking of questions, the discussion in the open, the mutual support, the understanding that one is not alone in the world, that makes it possible for us to get anything done in modern research. Community takes many forms, and lives in many places, and we would like to hear about where your community lives online. For our part, we are providing the African e-Infrastructures Discussion Forum.
I want to take this opportunity before the workshop to invite you to come to the discussion forum and tell us about yourself. There’s no signup procedure, just log in with an identity provider near you (or use the Catch-All identity provider, where anyone can register). This is a forum where a community of over 160 experts from across Africa and Europe learn, build, and discuss issues across the board from research and community projects, to integration of web applications with e-Infrastructures, and more. This is a place for you to feel at home - to speak your own language, and to engage with your own peers and collaborators - but also to easily exchange ideas and information with the movers and shakers in the e-Infrastructure world. We’ve worked hard to make it welcoming and accessible, and are very keen to hear your suggestions for improvement.
See http://www.sci-gaia.eu/engagement/ to find out more.
This is a companion discussion topic for the original entry at http://www.africa-grid.org//blog/2016/08/30/Sci-GaIA-3rd-Workshop/