AIMS Newsletter no.75, August 2018


Have you already signed up for the upcoming Interest Group in Agricultural Data (IGAD) Pre-meeting?


5-6 November, 2018
Africa, Botswana, Gaborone

This IGAD event will take place during the:

International Data Week (IDW2018) landmark event, - 5-8 November 2018, which combines: 

and addresses the theme ‘The Digital Frontiers of Global Science’ (Keynote Speakers - International Data Week 2018 confirmed).

If you are eager to share your unique contribution(s) and thus enrich the debate and discussions on the theme of this IGAD meeting:


  • You can officially express your desire to attend and actively participate in the IGAD RDA P12 Pre-Meeting by writing to [email protected] (Subject: IGAD RDA Botswana 2018).

Register now to get involved in the IGAD data-related conversation and ask the hosts some questions of your own! You will receive an acknowledgement of your mail and will be provided with logistic details on how you can attend the meeting.

Within the thematic framework of the IGAD Pre-Meeting, You will be able to…

… not only gain/enhance/consolidate (new) knowledge about data management/access/interoperability trends, projects, challenges and perspectives, but, also be actively involved in a number of live discussions about data collections in Africa and beyond!

Following the previous IGAD event dedicated to FAIR data guiding practices in agricultural and related sectors, the panellists will explain the efforts and achievements of their communities in adopting and promoting best practices in FAIR data collection creation and re-use, as well as in addressing some of the challenges concerning ownership, licensing, and sharing of the data that is being collected.

We are sure that the IGAD Pre-Meeting P12 will be a unique opportunity to address a number of data issues related to African Agriculture, Agribusiness, Agricultural Economics, Soil protection, soil rehabilitation, wheat, climate change, weather and other data-related topics, impact assessment of data policy interventions for food security, just to name a few of the themes that have already been put on the ‘IGAD in Botswana’ Agenda.

Discussions of the IGAD P12 Pre-Meeting will also be …

… the right opportunity to initiate new collaborations with counterparts that may regard:

  • set up of regional Data Centres,
  • the common use of open protocols and technologies (e.g. the block chain, sensors, drones, econometric software to handle, manage and analyse time-series, cross-sectional and panel data sets),

- to aid in data collection and interoperability and to prompt data usage in the research and industry areas.

It is our outmost belief that the approaching IGAD Pre-Meeting will be indeed a great opportunity to participate and share your expertise on the major issues focused on data collection, processing, interoperability and re-use, and that the upcoming event’s program (to be announced soon!) will help build a resilient and reliable open data to a great extent.

5 November 2018

This day will be dedicated to the theme: HOW AGRICULTURE IN AFRICA CAN BENEFIT FROM DATA COLLECTION? Within this framework we are going to:

(i) explore data collection practices in Africa and the challenges associated to it;

(ii) discuss possible benefits of data collection for farmers;

(iii) share straightforward and low cost data collection methods.

6 November 2018

This day  will be dedicated to a GODAN ACTION WORKSHOP associated to IGAD. The GODAN Action project explores three work streams:

(1) improving knowledge and capacity on the use of standards, by providers and intermediaries;

(2) understanding impact, to be able to efficiently monitor and measure impact and to  improve the potential impact of new initiatives;

(3) capacity development as a mechanism to leverage and extend the potential of networks.

GODAN Action, IGAD and partners propose two parallel workshops for:

(1) researchers and

(2) infomediaries (i.e. technology specialists, librarians, journalists, communication officers etc.).

The aim is to enable participants to discover, use and describe the benefits of open data, and how they impact on the development of agriculture and nutrition

To amplify these IGAD community voices, we will be talking to the panellists about their concluding thoughts and key findings from the plenary session.

Join the world’s leading data experts for presentations and discussions on the most pressing data issues in agriculture and related sectors!

We are looking forward to seeing You at the IGAD in Botswana meeting!

Online version of the invitation (this document remains updated)

Co-chairs of the Interest Group on Agriculture Data (IGAD), for the IGAD Task Force 2018:

IGAD Task Force (Botswana 2018):


Registration is now officially open for International Data Week 2018 (IDW 2018) in Gaborone, Botswana from 5-8 November 2018.  Take advantage of early bird pricing by registering at the link below prior to 30 September 2018. Reduced pricing is also available for students and attendees originating from and who are also based in low and middle income countries. IDW 2018 will be a rich week of science and data, filled with plenary sessions and panel discussions featuring many renowned international data experts!

My FAIR journey (by Susanna-Assunta Sansone)

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And, thanks again for your interest!