Morgan State University recently announced that it’s been designated “an official institutional global research partner for civic engagement, innovation, and sustainable development in Africa and the African diaspora at the second biennial Africa Open Data Conference (#AODC17)” held in Accra, Ghana, last month.(MSU’s Dr. Umaru Bah, left, and Dr. Yacob Astatke at the 2017 Africa Open Data Conference. Image: Courtesy of Morgan State University)
“Open data” is a critical component of “big data”—the very large data sets that can be analyzed to reveal patterns and trends. “Open data is globally accessible and is often used in conjunction with online open platforms and open source codes to design viable solutions for civic engagement and sustainable development across all fields and works of life, including health, education, agriculture, nutrition, investigative journalism, architecture, transportation, engineering, leadership, gender equality and social justice,” according to a statement from the university.
“Morgan’s seminal role in the open data movement is critical for future domestic and global information needs and the industries that will spin off as a result of interoperability and standards in this area,” Victor McCrary, Ph.D., Morgan’s vice president for Research and Economic Development, is quoted as saying in a statement.
Umaru Bah, Ph.D., Fulbright associate professor in the Department of Strategic Communication in Morgan’s School of Global Journalism and Communication led the initiative to have Morgan participate in the Africa Open Data Conference.
Yacob Astatke, D.Eng., assistant vice president for International Affairs at Morgan, helped to secure the University’s designation as an official global institutional partner of the conference.
Other partners include the Government of the Republic of Ghana, the United Nations Development Programme, or UNDP, and the World Wide Web Foundation.
While in Ghana, Astatke and Bah also visited Ashesi University, where they opened talks about other partnerships with Morgan.
The partnership furthers a plan “developed with Timothy Akers, Ph.D., assistant vice president for Research Innovation and Advocacy in Morgan’s Division of Research and Economic Development (D-RED), to establish a Morgan Center for Open Data Education and Entrepreneurship, (M-CODE),” according to a statement.
To learn more, read the entire announcement at the Morgan State University website.