Kansalaiskide on Uutisraivaajan finaalissa

- March 23, 2019 in Featured, tietokide

OKFIn ja THL:n yhteishanke Kansalaiskide on päässyt HS-Säätiön Uutisraivaaja-kilpailun finaaliin. Kansalaiskide-projekti edistää harkittua ja jäsennettyä yhteiskunnallista keskustelua tuottamalla kansalaisjärjestöjen, journalistien ja muiden keskustelijoiden käyttöön kokeillun toimintamallin, tarvittavat nettityökalut, koulutusta ja käytännön esimerkkejä yhteistyössä Hiilineutraali Helsinki 2035 -toimenpideohjelman kanssa. Toimintamalli perustuu THL:ssä kehitettyjen ja vaikutusarvioinneissa käytettyjen tietokiteiden käyttöön. Ne ovat avoimia nettisivuja, joilla on täsmällinen kysymys ja joiden vastausta päivitetään jatkuvasti yhteiskehittämisen keinoin pohjautuen kritiikinkestäviin datoihin, jäsennettyihin keskusteluihin ja malleihin. Finalistivaiheen aikana konkreettisten aiheiden avulla kehitetään ketterästi ohjeistusta ja työkalujen vaatimusmäärittelyjä erityisesti kansalaisosallistumista varten (tähän asti tietokiteet ovat olleet asiantuntijoiden työkalu). Varsinaisessa projektissa ohjeistusta ja työkaluja käytetään laajamittaisesti kansalaisjärjestöjen ja mediatalojen kanssa yhteistyössä erilaisten ilmastonmuutokseen liittyvien ongelmien ymmärtämiseen ja viestimiseen. Lisätietoja täällä ja uutisraivaajan blogissa! The post Kansalaiskide on Uutisraivaajan finaalissa appeared first on Open Knowledge Finland.

International Open Data Day celebrated in Nigeria

- March 22, 2019 in Follow the Money, Nigeria, Open Contracting, Open Data Day, open data day 2019

This report is part of the event report series on International Open Data Day 2019. On Saturday 2nd March, groups from around the world organised over 300 events to celebrate, promote and spread the use of open data. BudgIT Foundation and Connected Development (CODE) received funding through the mini-grant scheme by Hivos / Open Contracting Partnership, to organise events under the Follow public money flows theme. This is a joint report produced by Ayomide Faleye and Yakubu Titus Tukurah: their biographies are included at the bottom of this post.

Open Data Day with BudgIT, Nigeria

When the message to host a community event celebrating the International Open Data Day was put out to the community members of Yaba Local Council Development Area, we didn’t expect the turnout that graced the event. For a nation whose government takes pride in its ability to keep citizens in the dark about government activities, the huge response was a breath of fresh air.

Uadamen and Ayomide before the event

Over fifty people attended the event, among which were students, health workers, traders, engineers, clergymen, and community leaders. The event kicked off with Ayomide Faleye defining open data, stating its importance in the development of any economy and how citizens can use it as a tool to demand accountability and transparency from their government.  She explained what civic duties are and tracking how public funds are used is an important civic duty. She also asked the participants for their perception of Open Data to which a participant answered that it meant data which has been processed for public consumption. Ayomide took participants through how citizens can have access to the national and state budgets and be aware of funds allocated to community projects. Emphasizing on the need for citizens to demand transparency from the government during the execution of community projects, she also stated that it is the duty of journalists to criticize, peruse and ask questions about government policies, ensuring every action is in the best interest of the citizens.
Open data should be a tool used by citizens to drive societal change.  As a citizen, how many times have you asked questions? How many changes have you initiated?

Questions

Uadamen Ilevbaoje, Tracka Project manager handled the next session. He began by explaining how Tracka developed as an offshoot of BudgIT which monitors government budget and its intricacies. Tracka goes to communities, share budget pamphlets to citizens to enlighten them about government’s plans for their community while enlightening them on how to demand accountability and transparency from their representatives to ensure excellent service delivery. He showed the participants several projects in different states and their current statuses and also gave instances where Tracka intervened and the results were successful. An example was the renovation of a healthcare centre in Sokoto which was nominated for 34 million naira but nothing was done and patients were sleeping on bare floor without mattresses. Tracka discovered the discrepancy, alerted the public about it and the health care centre was renovated. Ayomide facilitated the Question and Answer session, the most interesting and interactive session. Participants asked several questions some of which are;
  • Are security measures being put in place to protect citizens who decide to criticize or demand accountability from their representatives?
  • where do we find the data to track how public funds are spent?
Participants made observations around the state of the nation and how although it is a long shot, expressed their willingness to contribute their quota to ensure the nation is back on track. Some said their optimism is on the basis of the work done by that organization like Tracka and BudgIT and also, events such as this prove that they are not alone in the fight for a new nation and this gives a strengthened hope for Nigeria’s prospects. The event was brought to a close after the Q&A session. A major takeaway from the event is the discovery of citizen readiness to hold elected officials accountable. Before the programme commenced, the majority of attendees were unaware of steps to take in calling for accountability while some feared for their safety. At the end of the programme, participants were eager to discuss with the convener and speaker, wanting to know more, speaking about their experiences and commending the convener for a job well done. The audience also clamoured for the continuation of the event in the community. This will empower them to be better advocates for a more open and transparent government. Group photographs were taken to capture the highlights of a day well-spent. The event was also captured in the media.

Open Data Day with Connected Development [CODE], Nigeria

The open and accessible data revolution is underway. Citizens no longer want to be passive recipients of legislation that is considered ‘inflicted’ upon them but rather, seek constructive ways to engagecontribute-use the formation of public policy as a means to enhance their civic responsibilities in ensuring that people in marginalized communities are empowered. However, for this to happen, any engagement needs to orientate around evidence that is held up by facts draw out from open sources of big data. Consequentially, public engagement is reshaping how knowledge is developed, shared and used by citizens and stakeholder communities.   The Open Data Day on March 2nd, 2019 was hosted by Titus of Connected Development [CODE] – Follow The Money Initiative in FCT Abuja Nigeria with about over 50 participants that attended the event. The agenda is to show the benefits of open data and encourage the adoption of open data policies in government, business, and civil society. The event brought together data enthusiasts among social workers, journalists, academics, government officials, youth, students, civil society organizations, community-based organizations and activists from all over the city of Abuja. They learned and shared skills around using data to enhance their activities in providing solutions to burning issues affecting people in rural communities. The event was focused on why government and individuals should open up their data for good governance and transparency with notable speakers and facilitators: Mukhtar Halilu (Asst. Community Engagement FollowTheMoney), Frank (Data Analyst- Data Lead Africa), Muhammed (Reboot), Jennifer Faeren (Journalist), and the host Yakubu Titus Tukurah (Data Visualizer- FollowTheMoney).

Participant asking question during the event

The concepts of “accountability” and “transparency” provide insight in understanding how open data requirements and expectations are achieved in different circumstances and the goal of open data has been to open all non-personal and non-commercial data, especially data collected and processed by government organizations. Mukhtar, a community engager, stated that one of the most notable advantages of open data is that making government data transparent increases public trust in government and civil servants, and also allows citizens to hold the government officials accountable for good governance. Frank, a data analyst from Data Lead Africa took a session on why government and individuals should open up their data and gave insight that, one of the key purposes of open data platforms is to promote access to government data and encourage development of creative tools and applications to engage and serve the wider community through the visualization of patterns and relationships. He added that in doing so, enabling civic engagement by providing an opportunity for citizens, public sector organizations, businesses, and independent developers to use a systematically-updated stream of open data is being encouraged.  

Biographies

Ayomide Faleye is a Research Analyst, and Program manager for Open Government Partnership Programs at BudgIT. She is the National Coordinator, Open Alliance Nigeria, a group of Civil Society Organisations seeking to promote good governance in Nigeria and ensure that it derives maximum benefit from openness and transparency needed for inclusive development and efficient service delivery. She graduated with a Bachelor’s degree in History and Strategic Studies at the University of Lagos, Akoka, Lagos, Nigeria. Since joining BudgIT in 2015, a civic startup backed by Gates Foundation, Omidyar Network, McArthur, she has been handling projects that advocates for transparency and accountability around government fiscal policy, Open Data, and governance. She is a lover of children and Football. Yakubu Titus Tukurah is a Campaigner and Researcher. A diploma holder in Surveying and Geo-informatics with more than 3 years experience in data visualization. Currently volunteering for United Nation Foundation, Amnesty International, One Campaign, Youth-hub Africa, and a Yali Fellow. Born and raised in Kaduna Nigeria with a burning desire and passion to drive change to marginalized communities ensuring their voices are heard.

Open Data Day 2019: open science events in Benin and Cameroon

- March 21, 2019 in benin, cameroon, Open Data Day, open data day 2019, Open Science

This report is part of the event report series on International Open Data Day 2019. On Saturday 2nd March, groups from around the world organised over 300 events to celebrate, promote and spread the use of open data. AfricArxiv and APSOHA received funding through the mini-grant scheme by the Frictionless Data for Reproducible Research project, to organise events under the Open Science theme. This is a joint report produced by Justin Sègbédji Ahinon and Yves Valery Obame: their biographies are included at the bottom of this post.

Open Data Day 2019 Cotonou, Benin

On Saturday, March 9, 2019, Open Data Day Cotonou took place at the Blolab in Cotonou, jointly organized by AfricArxiv and the Waziup Iot Clubs. Open Data Day is an annual celebration of open data around the world. The main organizer of this event on a global scale is Open Knowledge International, a global non-profit organization whose purpose is to foster and encourage the use of open data to solve societal problems. Open Data Day is in 2019 at its ninth edition, and the themes selected this year are:
  • Open science
  • Monitoring the flow of public funds
  • Open mapping
  • Data for equal development
For the Cotonou edition, the main theme chosen for the discussions was that of open science. The main objective is to raise public awareness of the importance of open science and open data for Benin and Francophone Africa in general and of open access publishing. With about twenty participants and three speakers, many topics related to open in general were discussed. These include open science in Francophone Africa, open educational resources, open data and citizenship. The various speakers during the day were people who were experts in open science and open data, which made the discussions all the more interesting and at the same time stimulated public participation.   These are the themes of the different discussions of the day as well as their speakers:
  • Open Science: Introduction, State of Play and Participation in Francophone Africa
    • Justin Sègbédji Ahinon: WordPress developer, co-founder of AfricArxiv
  • Open Data Promotion in Benin: what is the role of citizens?
    • Maurice Thantan: Web Journalist, President of the Association of Bloggers of Benin
  • Open Educational Resources and Use Cases
    • Franck Kouyami: Systems and Networks Engineer, Technical Officer of the Cotonou Francophone Digital Campus and Chair of the Benin Internet Governance Forum
  • Round table: #OpenScience, #CivicTech, State of play in Francophone Africa
    • Justin Ahinon, Maurice Thantan, Franck Kouyami

Open Data Day 2019 Yaoundé, Cameroon

In fellowship with international actors for Openness, The Cameroon Laboratory for Research on Contemporary Societies (CERESC) in partnership with APSOHA and the OER-Cameroon Association, organized a conference on “Discovering infinite wealth of open data in scientific research” with the objectives of: sensitizing researchers at the University of Yaoundé I to adopt best practices of open research data; sensitize and socialize the Cameroonian scientific community to the concept of Open Data. Open Data, which was at the center of the exchanges, are data to which the access is completely public and free of right, in the same way as their exploitation and reuse. In Cameroon, Open Science and its components (open data, open access, open education …) is not yet widespread and renowned in academic circles because of weak communication and a lack of activities related to open science. Cameroonian researchers and students are therefore not always well informed of the opportunities and benefits they can derive from embracing this movement. The celebration of Open Data Day 2019 was therefore a good opportunity to continue to sensitize the research community of State Universities in general and those of the University of Yaoundé I in particular of the importance to adhere to this worldwide movement. The focus of this day’s work was sharing the experience of the National Institute of Statistics (INS), a government agency that hosts a project and Open Data database. This sharing of experience, through hands-on access to this database, allowed over 80 participants to see the benefits of open data to researchers. The majority of participants was not even aware of the existence of such a database available and opens for their research and that they themselves could supply. Challenges for the implementation of open data in academia in Cameroon remain numerous: the indifference of decision-makers, the absence of openness-friendly research policies, the glaring lack of digital infrastructures, the lack of literacy among decision-makers and researchers are a few. The very rich exchanges between participants and speakers of this conference made it possible to take the measure of these difficulties and gravities and the measures to face them. The flagship resolutions at the end of the work were to build, with external partners, an open access digital database portal for research, and to draft an Open Science policy for the University of Yaoundé I. The complete report is available at www.ceresc.org

Biographies

Justin Sègbédji Ahinon is a WordPress developer with a background in applied statistics. He is strongly interested in open access issues in Africa as well as in the dissemination of knowledge and the means by which it is carried out on the continent. He is a fellow and recently a mentor of the Open Leaders program of the Mozilla Foundation. Yves Valery Obame is a teacher in the Government Teacher’s Training College (GTTC) in Cameroon, member of Cameroon Laboratory for Research on Contemporary Societies (CERESC) of the University of Yaoundé I and a Ph. D candidate in Sociology. Founder of OER-Cameroon (@oer_cameroon), an open movement devoted to raising awareness and promoting the use of open educational resources in Higher and Secondary Education in Cameroon. He discovered the open perspectives (Access, Education, Data, Science) quite recently but its vision and objectives are in line with this work of awareness, through his teachings, that he leads and shares with his students in Cameroon and developing countries on the need for equal, justice and free access to knowledge. He is equally involved, with APSOHA, in advocacy work in the academic milieu.

Vernon Lee’s Satan the Waster: Pacifism and the Avant-Garde

- March 20, 2019 in anti-war, avant-garde, Drama, Literature, pacifism, satan, vernon lee, war, warfare, world war one

Part essay collection, part play, part macabre ballet, Satan the Waster: A Philosophic War Trilogy (1920) is one of Vernon Lee's most political and experimental works. Amanda Gagel explores this modernist masterpiece which lays siege to the patriotism plaguing Europe and offers a vision for its possible pacifist future.

The Private Life of a Cat (ca. 1944)

- March 19, 2019 in Alexander Hammid, cats, experimental film, Maya Deren, new york, Private Life of a Cat

Experimental film from Alexander Hammid (and possibly also Maya Deren) exploring the lives of their two cats (and then five kittens) with which they lived in their Greenwich Village apartment.

Open Data Day 2019: A joint report by iWatch Africa and Lesotho Open Data Initiative

- March 19, 2019 in ghana, lesotho, Open Data Day, open data day 2019

This report is part of the event report series on International Open Data Day 2019. On Saturday 2nd March, groups from around the world organised over 300 events to celebrate, promote and spread the use of open data. iWatch Africa and Lesotho Open Data Initiative received funding through the mini-grant scheme by the Foreign and Commonwealth Office of the United Kingdom, to organise events under the Equal Development theme. This is a joint report produced by Gideon Sarpong and Makhamisa Senekane: their biographies are included at the bottom of this post. It has been reposted from the iWatch Africa website.

Context

iWatch Africa in Ghana sought to drive a discussion about how technology and open data could promote equal development. Twenty participants were selected across the country to mark the event in Ghana which was viewed by over 5.000 people via live stream. The iWatch Africa Data Day event focused on four main themes;
  • The importance of open data in promoting gender equality in Ghana
  • Negative effects of violence and discrimination against women
  • Discussions about innovative tools to be adopted and deployed by session participants in promoting gender equality
  • Workshop on how an online interactive data explorer can help open data on gender-based violence and discrimination and promote gender equality in Ghana

iWatch Africa Open Data Day 2019 in Ghana, Gideon Sarpong (right), Teta Zubah (left)

Meanwhile, on the 2nd March 2019, Lesotho hosted its inaugural Open Data Day event. This event was hosted by the National University of Lesotho, in Maseru. The theme of the event was “Open Data for Sustainable Development”. The keynote speaker at the event was Dr. Makhamisa Senekane; who is the Lecturer at the National University of Lesotho. Topics that were discussed for this inaugural Open Data Day event included:
  • Open Science
  • Open Data for Sustainable Development
  • Open Contracting
  • Smart Contracts

Dr. Makhamisa Senekane delivering a keynote speech on the use of Open Data for Sustainable Development

Challenges

The major obstacle to the use of open data to reduce violence and discrimination against women and girls in Ghana is the reluctance of the Ministry of Gender and the Domestic Violence and Victims Support Unit (DOVVSU) to regularly publish relevant data on gender-based violence and discrimination, a frustration well expressed during the conference. As of March 2019, the Ministry had failed to make relevant data on violence and discrimination against women available to all Ghanaians. This is a contributing factor for iWatch Africa’s decision to deploy an interactive data explorer to fill in the huge hole created by the State.

Methodology

iWatch Africa marked the Open Data Day event in Accra by officially issuing a call for participation with specific emphasis on how new technologies and open data can reduce violence and discrimination against women and girls in Ghana. Gideon Sarpong, iWatch Africa’s Director of Policy and News, delivered a short speech on the main theme: the importance of Open Data in promoting gender equality in Ghana. Mr. Sarpong argued that,” data is critical to making informed policy decisions” when it comes to fighting gender based violence and discrimination” and called on the Ministry of Gender to help drive the conversation by publishing all relevant data.

Gideon Sarpong, main speaker at Open Data Day 2019, organised by iWatch Africa

Mr. Sarpong also led a session to explore how an online interactive data explorer could help promote equal development. Mr. Sarpong demonstrated how the platform would visualize inputted data gathered by over 60 field volunteers currently working with iWatch Africa. The interactive platform, he argued will “explore the measurement and standardisation of all gender-based violence and discrimination cases using an online unified gauge with composite indicators. These indicators will include severity metrics and solution progress metrics.” Mr. Sarpong also added that, “the technology will provide a platform where citizens and global stakeholders can relate with gender based violence data in Ghana by humanizing the data through storytelling.” After a practical session of his presentation, participants held on open forum on how innovative tools can be adopted and deployed by session participants in promoting gender equality.

Teta Zubah, presenting at Open Data Day 2019 organised by iWatch Africa

Ms Teta Kebeh Zubah, guest speaker and Director of Aid for Girls and Children Foundation also spoke about the negative impact of violence and discrimination against women. Ms. Zubah encouraged participants to take firm positions against SGBV insisting that participants should be ready to speak up and defend women’s rights at all times. In Lesotho, participants of the event held a discussion of the modalities of promoting the use of data science in both the public and private sectors of Lesotho after the presentations. It was resolved that the interim committee should be formed and be tasked with the responsibility of advancing Open Data policies and practices in Lesotho, together with building a vibrant Open Data community in Lesotho. The committee consists of the following members:
  • Mr. Joshua Takalimane (President)
  • Dr. Lerato Mohapi (Deputy President)
  • Ms. ‘Makhoarai Mohapi (Treasurer)
  • Ms. Mothepane Lenko (Secretary General)
  • Dr. Makhamisa Senekane ( Spokesperson)
  • Mr. Kito Pooe (Deputy Spokesperson)

Lesotho Open Data Initiative’s interim committee. From left to right: Makhamisa Senekane, Joshua Takalimane, Kito Pooe, Mothepane Lenko, ‘Makhoarai Mohapi, Lerato Mohapi

Conclusions and Lessons Learnt

Participants of the Open Data event in Accra agreed to the following resolutions as key focus for iWatch Africa in 2019:
  1. Resolution by session participants to work towards empowering women and girls who are victims of violence and discrimination.
  2. Resolution by session participants to become ambassadors and drivers of accountability for gender discrimination and abuse of women and girls.
The name Gender Force was adopted for this nucleus group that will focus on the use of technology and open data to promote equal development in Ghana. Participants of Maseru Open Data Day event made the following resolutions:
  • The establishment of an interim committee consisting of six members This committee is tasked with advocating for the adoption and use of open data to address societal problems in Lesotho, and the registration of Lesotho Open Data Initiative as an NGO
  • Organizing workshops to capacitate stakeholders (including National Statistics Office) about the adoption and use of Open Data for sustainable development
  • Hosting of monthly Open Data meetups
  • Hosting of annual mapathon competitions
  • Hosting of annual datathon competitions (with specific focus on the use of Open Data for sustainable development)
  • Exploration of open science collaboration with UNESCO and African Open Science Platform
 

Biographies

Gideon Sarpong, iWatch Africa Gideon Sarpong is a media practitioner with over seven years experience in data, investigative and policy journalism. Gideon is currently the Policy and News Director at iWatch Africa. His major role includes developing news strategy for correspondents across Ghana, as well as designing project and policy focus for the organisation. He is an author with over eight publications; a fellow of the Young African Leaders Initiative (YALI), Thomson Reuters Foundation, Commonwealth Youth Program (DYLP) and Bloomberg Data for Health Program. Gideon holds a degree in economics from the University of Cape Coast and PgD in Policy Journalism and Media Studies from the University of Zambia. He is a firm believer in the use of data and technology for development in Africa. Makhamisa Senekane (PhD), Lesotho Open Data Initiative Makhamisa Senekane is a Lecturer in the Department of Physics and Electronics, National University of Lesotho. He has obtained his B.Eng in Electronics Engineering from the National University of Lesotho, his MSc.Eng in Electrical Engineering from the University of Cape Town, and his PhD  in Physics from the University of KwaZulu-Natal. He is a lifetime member of Golden Key International Honour Society. He is a Data Science researcher who believes in the power of data in general and Open Data in particular to transform the lives of Africans through sustainable development.

Open Data Day 2019: A joint report by iWatch Africa and Lesotho Open Data Initiative

- March 19, 2019 in ghana, lesotho, Open Data Day, open data day 2019

This report is part of the event report series on International Open Data Day 2019. On Saturday 2nd March, groups from around the world organised over 300 events to celebrate, promote and spread the use of open data. iWatch Africa and Lesotho Open Data Initiative received funding through the mini-grant scheme by the Foreign and Commonwealth Office of the United Kingdom, to organise events under the Equal Development theme. This is a joint report produced by Gideon Sarpong and Makhamisa Senekane: their biographies are included at the bottom of this post. It has been reposted from the iWatch Africa website.

Context

iWatch Africa in Ghana sought to drive a discussion about how technology and open data could promote equal development. Twenty participants were selected across the country to mark the event in Ghana which was viewed by over 5.000 people via live stream. The iWatch Africa Data Day event focused on four main themes;
  • The importance of open data in promoting gender equality in Ghana
  • Negative effects of violence and discrimination against women
  • Discussions about innovative tools to be adopted and deployed by session participants in promoting gender equality
  • Workshop on how an online interactive data explorer can help open data on gender-based violence and discrimination and promote gender equality in Ghana

iWatch Africa Open Data Day 2019 in Ghana, Gideon Sarpong (right), Teta Zubah (left)

Meanwhile, on the 2nd March 2019, Lesotho hosted its inaugural Open Data Day event. This event was hosted by the National University of Lesotho, in Maseru. The theme of the event was “Open Data for Sustainable Development”. The keynote speaker at the event was Dr. Makhamisa Senekane; who is the Lecturer at the National University of Lesotho. Topics that were discussed for this inaugural Open Data Day event included:
  • Open Science
  • Open Data for Sustainable Development
  • Open Contracting
  • Smart Contracts

Dr. Makhamisa Senekane delivering a keynote speech on the use of Open Data for Sustainable Development

Challenges

The major obstacle to the use of open data to reduce violence and discrimination against women and girls in Ghana is the reluctance of the Ministry of Gender and the Domestic Violence and Victims Support Unit (DOVVSU) to regularly publish relevant data on gender-based violence and discrimination, a frustration well expressed during the conference. As of March 2019, the Ministry had failed to make relevant data on violence and discrimination against women available to all Ghanaians. This is a contributing factor for iWatch Africa’s decision to deploy an interactive data explorer to fill in the huge hole created by the State.

Methodology

iWatch Africa marked the Open Data Day event in Accra by officially issuing a call for participation with specific emphasis on how new technologies and open data can reduce violence and discrimination against women and girls in Ghana. Gideon Sarpong, iWatch Africa’s Director of Policy and News, delivered a short speech on the main theme: the importance of Open Data in promoting gender equality in Ghana. Mr. Sarpong argued that,” data is critical to making informed policy decisions” when it comes to fighting gender based violence and discrimination” and called on the Ministry of Gender to help drive the conversation by publishing all relevant data.

Gideon Sarpong, main speaker at Open Data Day 2019, organised by iWatch Africa

Mr. Sarpong also led a session to explore how an online interactive data explorer could help promote equal development. Mr. Sarpong demonstrated how the platform would visualize inputted data gathered by over 60 field volunteers currently working with iWatch Africa. The interactive platform, he argued will “explore the measurement and standardisation of all gender-based violence and discrimination cases using an online unified gauge with composite indicators. These indicators will include severity metrics and solution progress metrics.” Mr. Sarpong also added that, “the technology will provide a platform where citizens and global stakeholders can relate with gender based violence data in Ghana by humanizing the data through storytelling.” After a practical session of his presentation, participants held on open forum on how innovative tools can be adopted and deployed by session participants in promoting gender equality.

Teta Zubah, presenting at Open Data Day 2019 organised by iWatch Africa

Ms Teta Kebeh Zubah, guest speaker and Director of Aid for Girls and Children Foundation also spoke about the negative impact of violence and discrimination against women. Ms. Zubah encouraged participants to take firm positions against SGBV insisting that participants should be ready to speak up and defend women’s rights at all times. In Lesotho, participants of the event held a discussion of the modalities of promoting the use of data science in both the public and private sectors of Lesotho after the presentations. It was resolved that the interim committee should be formed and be tasked with the responsibility of advancing Open Data policies and practices in Lesotho, together with building a vibrant Open Data community in Lesotho. The committee consists of the following members:
  • Mr. Joshua Takalimane (President)
  • Dr. Lerato Mohapi (Deputy President)
  • Ms. ‘Makhoarai Mohapi (Treasurer)
  • Ms. Mothepane Lenko (Secretary General)
  • Dr. Makhamisa Senekane ( Spokesperson)
  • Mr. Kito Pooe (Deputy Spokesperson)

Lesotho Open Data Initiative’s interim committee. From left to right: Makhamisa Senekane, Joshua Takalimane, Kito Pooe, Mothepane Lenko, ‘Makhoarai Mohapi, Lerato Mohapi

Conclusions and Lessons Learnt

Participants of the Open Data event in Accra agreed to the following resolutions as key focus for iWatch Africa in 2019:
  1. Resolution by session participants to work towards empowering women and girls who are victims of violence and discrimination.
  2. Resolution by session participants to become ambassadors and drivers of accountability for gender discrimination and abuse of women and girls.
The name Gender Force was adopted for this nucleus group that will focus on the use of technology and open data to promote equal development in Ghana. Participants of Maseru Open Data Day event made the following resolutions:
  • The establishment of an interim committee consisting of six members This committee is tasked with advocating for the adoption and use of open data to address societal problems in Lesotho, and the registration of Lesotho Open Data Initiative as an NGO
  • Organizing workshops to capacitate stakeholders (including National Statistics Office) about the adoption and use of Open Data for sustainable development
  • Hosting of monthly Open Data meetups
  • Hosting of annual mapathon competitions
  • Hosting of annual datathon competitions (with specific focus on the use of Open Data for sustainable development)
  • Exploration of open science collaboration with UNESCO and African Open Science Platform
 

Biographies

Gideon Sarpong, iWatch Africa Gideon Sarpong is a media practitioner with over seven years experience in data, investigative and policy journalism. Gideon is currently the Policy and News Director at iWatch Africa. His major role includes developing news strategy for correspondents across Ghana, as well as designing project and policy focus for the organisation. He is an author with over eight publications; a fellow of the Young African Leaders Initiative (YALI), Thomson Reuters Foundation, Commonwealth Youth Program (DYLP) and Bloomberg Data for Health Program. Gideon holds a degree in economics from the University of Cape Coast and PgD in Policy Journalism and Media Studies from the University of Zambia. He is a firm believer in the use of data and technology for development in Africa. Makhamisa Senekane (PhD), Lesotho Open Data Initiative Makhamisa Senekane is a Lecturer in the Department of Physics and Electronics, National University of Lesotho. He has obtained his B.Eng in Electronics Engineering from the National University of Lesotho, his MSc.Eng in Electrical Engineering from the University of Cape Town, and his PhD  in Physics from the University of KwaZulu-Natal. He is a lifetime member of Golden Key International Honour Society. He is a Data Science researcher who believes in the power of data in general and Open Data in particular to transform the lives of Africans through sustainable development.

23/03: segunda rodada de eventos do Open Data Day

- March 18, 2019 in colaboração, Dados Abertos, Gastos Abertos, governo aberto, Jornalismo de dados, Open Data Day, sociedade civil, transparência

Como já mencionamos antes, o Open Data Day é um momento anual onde todo o mundo debate e promove, por um dia, o uso de dados abertos. Em geral, acontecem eventos, workshops, fóruns online, hackatons e todo o tipo de atividade usando informação livre. O intuito da data é incentivar governos, empresas e a sociedade civil a usarem dados abertos em suas iniciativas. A gente explicou um pouco melhor o que é o dia neste texto aqui. Neste ano, o evento acontece pela nona vez e conta com uma peculiaridade. A data escolhida pela nossa rede internacional foi o dia 2 de março, sábado de carnaval. Sendo assim, os eventos comemorativos do Open Data Day foram agendados para o dia 9 e 23 de março. Já contamos um pouco do que aconteceu nas edições de Curitiba, Recife e Porto Alegre em um texto do nosso blog. Agora, Fortaleza e Natal se preparam para receber suas respectivas edições no dia 23/03. A edição de Natal conta com 7 palestras sobre dados abertos no contexto da saúde, gastos públicos, direito e governo aberto, além de um minicurso sobre Python para Open Data. Já a edição de Fortaleza conta com 4 debates, 4 oficinas sobre R e dados abertos e uma edição temática do Cerveja com Dados para encerrar o dia com chave de ouro. Fortaleza
Dia: 23/03
Hora: 09:00
Local: Casa da Cultura Digital (Rua dos Pacajus, 33 – Praia de Iracema).
Confira a programação completa na página de Facebook do evento ou no Instagram.
Natal
Dia: 23/03
Hora: 08:30
Local: IFRN Central (Avenida Senador Salgado Filho, 1559, Tirol).
Confira a programação completa e inscreva-se.
Flattr this!

Leveraging open data for healthier communities in Africa

- March 15, 2019 in equal development, Nigeria, Open Data Day, open data day 2019, zambia

On Open Data Day 2019, groups from around the world organised over 300 events to celebrate, promote and spread the use of open data. The Women Economic and Leadership Transformation Initiative (WELTI) and Safety First for Girls Outreach Foundation (SAFIGI) received funding through our mini-grant scheme by the Foreign and Commonwealth Office of the United Kingdom, to organise events under the Equal Development theme. The event report below was written by Ifeoma Okonji and Hadassah Louis: their biographies are included at the bottom of this post. We are living in times where the spotlight is on women. Gender equality and equal development is a running theme, however, this is not translated in the daily lives of women. The mantra has to be translated to actionable steps if we are to achieve SDG5 by 2030. Open Data is the best defense for women because data does not discriminate, especially when it accessible to and produced by underserved communities.

Women take the lead

Two female led and focused organizations in the Africa region leveraged Open Data Day 2019 to showcase how Open Data is crucial to improving the socio-economic conditions of women in developing communities. Women Economic and Leadership Transformation Initiative (WELTI) in Nigeria and Safety First for Girls Outreach Foundation (SAFIGI) in Zambia, both use open data as a response tool on issues affecting their respective communities. WELTI leads open data initiatives in Nigeria by ensuring that the young women whose lives are being impacted, leverage technology to make their businesses thrive, drive leadership and also in their educational life as such opportunities isn’t inherent in the normal school curriculum and have access to data that can help them in their daily lives. This involves leading stakeholder engagement strategies to drive this. SAFIGI taps into the power of working open, putting young women in leadership positions, and strategic collaboration to pursue research, create safety courses, and execute social campaigns in order to improve safety for girls. Open data often goes hand in hand with open working cultures and open business practices. While this culture lends itself to diversity, it is crucial that those who are involved in Open data take on a bottom up and inclusive approach so that marginalized communities do not continue to be sidelined in research spaces.

Cancer, data and female health

WELTI’s Open Data day was themed Cancer, Data and Female Health. In partnership with CEAFON Nigeria, an organization of doctors who are spreading awareness on cancer, the Women Economic and Leadership Transformation Initiative hosted the event at Girls Senior Academy Secondary School, Simpson Street, in Lagos. The ODD Nigeria event started by beneficiaries being asked what they understood by open data and what sort of data they look for when trying to access data. Young Nigeria women were shown statistics, preventive measures and care in regards to cancer. In the course of the training, they were shown how information can be sought openly. This included pre and post surveys regarding cancer,data and female health and what open sources are available to them to get information. We had 45% of these young women knowing what Cancer,Data and Female Health was all about and after the program, we had a 70% increase in awareness and knowledge and that was quite an impact. This included over a hundred female beneficiaries who were also exposed to sites and data collection/retrieval regarding the subject matter. At the clinical/population and research data level, opening up medical data, sharing and linking large healthcare datasets enables semantically to relate and enrich data on symptoms, diseases, diagnosis, treatments, and prescriptions offering the potential for improvements in care for individuals and populations as well as more efficient semantic access to the evidence base.

Safer communities with open data

SAFIGI Outreach Foundation in Lusaka, Zambia hosted Open Data Day with a goal to increase understanding on the benefits of Open Data in creating safer grassroots communities. The event was hosted at Global Platform in Lusaka. 80% of the attendees were female, and prior to the event 1 in 10 did not understand Open Data, and 40% of participants only had a rough idea about Open Data. The Open Data Day event by SAFIGI was structured to respond to this gap and share strategies which the participants could use to improve and solve issues in their community through Open Data. In 2019, Safety First for Girls is working on a campaign called Equality Culture in which they are engaging community members to address both positive and negative aspects of tradition in line with gender equality. This was founded on the youth led organizations Open research titled the Safety Report paper; https://goo.gl/4Ru6b7 in which they studied how culture, traditions and beliefs help maintain the status quo and inequality. Through this campaign, SAFIGI is using open data to improve safety conditions of girls in local communities through safety education, research, and advocacy. Open Data Day hosted by SAFIGI in Lusaka highlighted the gap in comprehensive research about women from grassroots communities. UN Online Volunteers who worked on the Open Research and Data Analysis through SAFIGI were part of a panel at the event to showcase a good example of how open data can bring positive change by sharing SAFIGI Foundations Open Data Analysis which we is accessible here:- https://goo.gl/RHCGec

An equal future is possible with open data

In a continent like Africa, rigged with strong patriarchal systems which create communities rife with gender inequality, open data initiatives can be a tool to enable for socio-economic empowerment of women. The strides made by SAFIGI and WELTI to use Open Data and open practices for equal development is creating communities within the continent that addresses inequality with evidence-based approaches. While Open data is gender neutral, a gendered approach is necessary for equal development in underserved and developing communities. This can only be accomplished when women take the lead in analysing core issues affecting their communities, sharing this through open data and using best practices to solve gender inequality. The capacity strengthening of female-led initiatives creates a ripple effect in the movement for a more equal world in which women are safer, healthier, and economically sound which emphasises on the human dignity of marginalized girls and in turn promotes their human rights. Open Data Day was more than just a celebration, it is a milestone toward creating a more equal world through data, one girl at a time.  

Biographies

Ifeoma Okonji is a Social entrepreneur, a Customer experience Professional with over ten years’ experience in both the profit and non-profit sector. She is an astute young lady who has a passion to empower young women, and also has a knack for smart work, dedication and teamwork. She is the founder of Women Economic and Leadership Transformation Initiative (WELTI) a non-profit that advocates for equality for young women in leadership, technology, health and education. She is also a Mozilla Open leader, an associate member of Women in Management, business and public service (WIMBIZ),an open knowledge thought leader/advocate and a member of Global giving International. She has a propensity to travel, sustain useful acquaintances and loves music and dancing. Hadassah Louis is a youth leader passionate about gender, digital literacy, and grassroots advocacy. She is founder of the SAFIGI Outreach Foundation and President of Digital Grassroots. She is also a 2019 IFF Community Development fellow, a 2019 Engineers Without Borders Canada Kumvana fellow, a Mozilla Open Leader and expert, an Internet Society 2017 Youth@IGF fellow , an open knowledge advocate, and a champion for capacity building of youth and girls. Hadassah graduated summa cum laude in multimedia journalism, and is a contributor on Impakter.com and Africa.com. She is a Woman Deliver Scholarship recipient 2019. Learn more about her work on www.hadassahlouis.com

Avoimuuden vaalipaneeli 2019

- March 15, 2019 in elections, Events, Featured, vaalit

Tule mukaan vaalipaneeliin kuulemaan puolueiden näkökulmia digimaailmaan ja avoimeen dataan. 1.4.2019 Helsingissä, Maria01:ssä. Miten rakentaa kilpailukykyistä, digitaalista Suomea, jossa on hyvä elää yhdessä älykkäiden robottien kanssa? Miten Suomi voisi ottaa osuutensa globaalista alusta- ja datataloudesta?  Miten saada mydata töihin reilulla tavalla, millainen on turvallinen kyberinfra? Miten saada suomalainen sote-aarrearkku hyötykäyttöön – vai onko henkilötietojen toissijainen käyttö ja yksityisyyden suoja ratkaisematon epäyhtälö? Miten taata avoin demokratia trollien ja jatkuvien aprillipäivien aikana? Tervetuloa maksuttomaan avoimuuden vaalipaneeliin, jossa tulevaisuuden tietoyhteiskunnasta keskustelevat Timo Harakka (SDP), Jyrki Kasvi (vihreät), Kristo Lehtonen (keskusta) ja Jouni Markkanen (kokoomus). Ilmoittaudu mukaan. Lisätietoja COSSin sivuilta. The post Avoimuuden vaalipaneeli 2019 appeared first on Open Knowledge Finland.