Category Archives: Conferences

International Data Week 2018: The Digital Frontiers of Global Science, 22-26 October 2018, Gaborone, Botswana

The second edition of International Data Week (IDW 2018) will be held on 22-26 October 2018 in Gaborone, Botswana. Hosted by the Botswana Open Science and Open Data Forum, IDW 2018 will bring together data professionals and researchers from all disciplines and from all parts of the globe.

Co-organized by the ICSU Committee on Data for Science and Technology (CODATA), the ICSU World Data System (WDS) and the Research Data Alliance (RDA), this landmark event will address the theme of ‘The Digital Frontiers of Global Science’. In a hyperconnected world where the internet is pervasive and web technologies are driving major changes in our lives, research has become more than ever before digital and international.  Furthermore, the major societal and scientific challenges facing humanity in this digital age are profoundly global in character, requiring the participation of researchers from all countries and disciplines. The data revolution is also a major source of the scientific opportunities to address these issues but to realise these potentials the frontiers of science, data analysis and stewardship must be advanced.  Likewise, the data revolution must be inclusive, benefitting all,  and harnessing all energies: no parts of the world and no disciplines should be left behind.

The following themes will be encompassed within the conference’s scope:

  • frontier issues for research in a global and digital age;
  • applications, progress and challenges of data intensive research;
  • data infrastructure and enabling practices for international and collaborative research.

Like its predecessor, IDW 2018 will bring together data scientists, researchers from all disciplines, industry leaders, entrepreneurs, policy makers and data stewards.  All areas of research are in scope, including the social sciences, humanities, and business and management sciences. Similarly, the applications of data outside of research will also be considered.  The event will be a rich week of science and data, featuring world renowned keynote speakers, plenary panels and discussions, the presentation of high quality research and practical working sessions for international collaborations.  IDW 2018 combines the 12th RDA Plenary Meeting, the biannual meeting of the research data community, and SciDataCon 2018, the scientific conference addressing the frontiers of data in research.  To a greater degree than at IDW 2016 in Denver, Colorado, the events will be integrated, such that each day will feature an inspiring and engaging range of activities.

Botswana, Africa and the World
The meeting will be held in Gaborone, the capital city of Botswana.  This is an excellent location for this compelling international conference:

The fundamental role of data for research, for economic development and ecological sustainability are recognised as important and are supported by the government, research institutions and community.
The government of Botswana has a strong and forward looking policy to support education, technology, development and research.
Botswana is active and well-integrated in regional (Southern African Development Community: SADC), African and international collaboration in various areas of research and in data activities.
The Botswana university and research sector is advancing greatly as a result of these policies and engagements.
Gaborone is easy to get to, with connecting flights for international participants from Johannesburg (JNB), Nairobi (NBO) and Addis Ababa (ADD), and boasts attractive venues and excellent quality, competitively priced hotels.
Botswana is one of the safest countries in the world according to the Global Peace Index: http://visionofhumanity.org/indexes/global-peace-index/.  Since independence in 1966, Botswana maintained a stable representative democracy, with a consistent record of uninterrupted democratic elections and ranking 35 (out of 176 countries) in the Corruption Perceptions Index 2016 https://www.transparency.org/news/feature/corruption_perceptions_index_2016.
Gaborone offers a pleasant location and attractions; in the north of the country, there are unique UNESCO sites for participants who wish to visit before or after the conference.

Organisers
The local and international organisers are:

Local Organising Committee
International Data Week will be locally led by the University of Botswana. The university will deliver the IDW through a committee comprising of a consortium of research institutions, public and private organizations.  This consortium includes, national Open Science and Open data Forum Department of Research Science and Technology (DRST), Botswana International University of Science and Technology (BIUST), Botswana University of Agriculture and Natural Resources (BUAN), Botho University (BU), Botswana Innovation Hub (BIH), Botswana Institute for Technology, Research and Information (BITRI), Botswana Communications Regulatory Authority (BOCRA), Botswana Fibre Networks (BOFINET), Department of Information Technology (DIT), Joint Minds Consult (JMC), Botswana Library Consortium (BLC), National Food Technology Research Centre (NFTRC).

ICSU Committee on Data for Science and Technology (CODATA):
ICSU-CODATA was established in 1966. Its membership is comprised of National Academies, Science Councils, international Scientific Unions, and related organizations that care about data. Its focus is on creating both a culture and a framework of standards, agreements and protocols that enable data to be shared and reused.

ICSU World Data System (ICSU-WDS):
ICSU-WDS was established in 2008 (its predecessor bodies were established in 1957). Its membership is comprised of data repositories, data service providers, and their partners. Its focus is on identifying, creating, and sustaining institutions that provide stewardship, long-term preservation, and access to data.

Research Data Alliance (RDA):
RDA was established in 2013 by several funding agencies in Europe, the United States, and Australia. Its membership is comprised of individuals and organizations (private and non-profit). Its focus is on the detailed implementation of policies, practices, and technologies (i.e., infrastructure) that lower barriers to data exchange

Contact Information:

Upcoming CODATA 2017 International Conference ‘Global Challenges and Data-Driven Science’, 8-13 October, Saint-Petersburg, Russia

Africa will be well represented during the upcoming CODATA Conference in Saint Petersburg.

Dr Ismail Serageldin, Founding Director of the Bibliotheca Alexandrina, will give a keynote presentation at CODATA 2017. Dr Serageldin is also a member of the African Open Science Platform Advisory Council.  Read more.

Please email us should your paper be accepted for presentation at the conference!

Read more about the CODATA Conference.