ICSU Regional Offices join CODATA and CAS for International Workshop on Open Data for Developing Countries

Over the past decade, the Task Group on Preservation of and Access to Scientific and Technical Data in Developing Countries (PASTD) has focused on promoting and enhancing the worldwide cooperation in ICTs and research data and in developing open knowledge environments for international science and sustainability in developing countries. Several international workshops and training sessions toward these goals in many areas of the developing world had been held, including in Brazil, South Africa, China, Mongolia and Cuba, including many regional country participants.

PASTD is organized under the Committee on Data for Science and Technology (CODATA) and the International Council for Science (ICSU), both located in Paris, France. With ever-closer cooperation between IRDR and ICSU Regional Offices emerging as one of the strategies for broadening the IRDR approach to disaster risk reduction, the RO presence from Africa and Asia at this important meeting is particularly welcome. IRDR pursues a policy of moving towards compatible and interoperable datasets on disaster risk and loss data, for example through its DATA project. 


PASTD is pleased to announce that it is organizing its next meeting, the International Workshop on Open Data for Science and Sustainability in Developing Countries (also referred to as Open Data in Developing Countries, or OpenDataDC), on 6-8 August 2014, at the United Nations Offices in Nairobi, Kenya. The workshop will be jointly organized with the World Federation of Engineering Organization, Communication and Information Committee(WFEO-CIC), the Ministry of Communication and Information of Kenya (MCIK), and the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO). Several other organizations are partners in this activity. This will serve as a special opportunity to present the accomplishments in improving access to and use of research data and in reducing the digital divide since the World Summit on Information Society (WSIS), held in Geneva 2003 and Tunis 2005, as well as the programs of each of the partners.

Participants of the Open Data Training at Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology (JKUAT) in Kenya (Source: JKUAT news website)

Meanwhile, scholars and early career scientists from different countries (Africa, United States of America, China, France, Japan, Russia, and the United Kingdom) converged on 4 August 2014 at Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology in Kenya for two-day training on Open Data for Science and Sustainability in Developing Countries, wherein participants were equipped with requisite skills on data analysis and data applications, particularly those involving geospatial data of huge importance for environmental and developmental research of various kinds. ICSU Committee on Data for Science and Technology (CODATA) Executive Director Dr. Simon Hodson expressed that data is the natural resource for research. “We hope to understand the experiences of developing countries in terms of access, quality and re-use of data; to share our knowledge and collaborate where possible,” Hodson said.

For more details: http://codata-pastd.org/index.html