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Wednesday, September 21 • 9:00am - 11:00am
(REF 21080) A Panel Discussion on Digital Infrastructures to enable Science Cooperation in Africa

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This session will take place online, focus will be enabling Science Cooperation through advanced research and education on digital infrastructures. These infrastructures are usually operated and provided by National and Regional Research and Education Networks (NRENs). NRENs are non-commercial organisations that focus on providing dedicated high-quality connectivity to Universities, Research centres, Libraries, Hospitals, and any other organisation supporting these activities.

NRENs are among the main stakeholders in Digital Cooperation and Digital Diplomacy as they represent a broad and diverse community of researchers, scientists, academics and students. Furthermore, NRENs are now heavily involved in “Science” including “Science Cooperation”, “Science Diplomacy”, “Open Science”, and “Science Communities of Practice”. In addition to Open Access and Community-Based Services.

The African research and education consist of the NRENs of the African countries working under three regional networks:

 UbuntuNet Alliance for the Research and Education Network of East and Southern Africa
 WACREN for the West and Central Africa Research and Education Network
 ASREN for the Arab States Research and Education Network.

AfricaConnect3 is the third phase of the AfricaConnect project that works on supporting the creation, development and use of advanced, reliable internet connectivity for the teaching, learning and research communities of Africa. AfricaConnect3 is co-funded by the European Union and delivered locally by regional organizations - UbuntuNet Alliance, WACREN and ASREN, together with European GÉANT R&E Network.

The discussion panel consists of the following personalities:

1- Madara Ogot, CEO of UbuntuNet Alliance, “What are research and Education Networks with insights on Africa”
2- Boubakar Bary, CEO of WACREN, “Services and activities conducted by NRENs to enable collaboration”
3- Yousef Torman, Managing Director of ASREN, “NRENs role and engagement in Science Cooperation and Diplomacy”
4- Angelica SARTORI CONTE, Programme Officer – Digital Connectivity, European Union Delegation, Belgium
5- Phoebe Oduor, PoC AfriGEO Secretariat/ Thematic Lead Land Use Land Cover RCMRD, “How can NRENs support collaboration for the African Group on Earth Observation (AfriGEO)
6- Islam Abou El-Magd, Vice - President, the National Authority for Remote Sensing and Space Sciences, Egypt
7- Nicky Wako (Moderator), Advocacy and Donor Engagement Manager, GEANT, the European Research and Education Network, “AfricaConenct3 project: a key enabler”

The discussion will tackle the following questions/topics:

 The status of NRENs in Africa and what are the main challenges facing the developments of these NRENs.
 NREN services and activities and what role they can play?
 What is LIBSENSE project about and how it supports science cooperation
 What makes AfricaConenct3 a key Science Cooperation “Enabler”?
 NRENs role in achieving the United Nations’ SDGs
 Main challenges regarding AfriGEO community collaboration across continents
 NRENs and “Open Science”
 NRENs and “Science Engagement”
 What NREN need to do the expected role?
 Challenges facing NRENs
 Examples of Science Collaboration within and beyond Africa
 What is your call to the UNGA77?

avatar for Nicky Wako

Nicky Wako

Advocacy and Donor Engagement Manager, GÉANT
Nicky Wako Advocacy and Donor Engagement Manager for AfricaConnect 3 Project, GÉANT. Nicky Wako joined GÉANT and the AfricaConnect 3 to helm the Advocacy and Donor engagements Activities. Before pivoting to the National Research and Education Network sector, Nicky spent 12 years... Read More →

avatar for Convenor: Yousef Torman

Convenor: Yousef Torman

Science Cooperation Advocate
For around thirty years, I worked in ICT at highly reputable institutions in the higher education and scientific research sector. During my work, my main focus was to use technology, mainly ICT, for the development and enhancing the lives of people in my community and beyond through... Read More →
avatar for Islam Abou El-Magd

Islam Abou El-Magd

Advisor to the Minister, Ministry of Higher Education and Scientific Research
Prof. Abou El-Magd has obtained his PhD from the School of Civil Engineering and The Environment, University of Southampton, UK where he also worked there for few years. His research area of interest is remote sensing and GIS modelling in environmental related issues. He is also leading... Read More →
avatar for Boubakar Barry

Boubakar Barry

Boubakar Barry holds Master's degree in Nuclear Physics and PhD in Nuclear Electronics, all obtained at the Technical University of Dresden in Germany. After his studies, Boubakar joined Université Cheikh Anta Diop de Dakar (UCAD) in 1989 as a lecturer and researcher, where he taught... Read More →
avatar for Madara Ogot

Madara Ogot

CEO, UbuntuNet Alliance
Madara Ogot has worked as a Professor in Mechanical Engineering in the Department of Mechanical and Manufacturing Engineering at the University of Nairobi, Kenya where he previously served as the Deputy Vice Chancellor, Research, Innovation and Enterprise. He is an accomplished academician... Read More →
avatar for Phoebe Oduor

Phoebe Oduor

PoC AfriGEO Secretariat, RCMRD
Phoebe has a background in Geospatial Engineering and Climate Change and Adaptation. She works for the Regional Centre for Mapping of Resources for Development (RCMRD) based in Nairobi, as the Point of Contact for the AfriGEO secretariat, a regional Group on Earth Observations (GEO... Read More →

Wednesday September 21, 2022 9:00am - 11:00am EDT