Data and Research Infrastructure Sharing for Improving African Innovation

Data and Research Infrastructure Sharing for Improving African Innovation 2016-11-09T15:43:52+00:00

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Science Talk
Presenter: Prof Colin Wright, Council for Scientific and Industrial Research, South Africa
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Rapid change and innovation are the order of our day. We are bombarded with new, foreign terms, e.g. 4th Industrial Revolution; Internet of Things; Smart Cities. Will these innovative developments create opportunities and jobs—or should we be concerned?

Further, what about the impact of the data revolution on today’s business and research methodologies, examples: personalised medical care; previously unknown diseases e.g. ebola and zika; climate change; social media …?

We will summarise common, underlying core issues brought to the fore by these global challenges—and opportunities. We explore the concept of contemporary Research Data Infrastructures and how these can be harnessed towards supporting solutions. Can modern cyberinfrastructure tools be brought to bear in addressing any of these challenges?

In particular, the SA national cyberinfrastructure initiative will be introduced. Issues such as how this intervention can support Open Research and Open Innovation will be explored. Education at all levels is being impacted by these developments—both in terms of utilising the technology but also in questioning classical curricula. Discussion has already commenced with regard to expanding these initiatives to the SADC region and the continent have commenced.
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wrightProf Colin Wright
Council for Scientific and Industrial Research, South Africa
Presenter

Professor Colin Wright (Advisor: Cyberinfrastructure to the Department of Science and Technology (DST)) has a PhD (Numerical Analysis) from the University of the Witwatersrand. He pursued an academic career rising to Professor of Computational Mathematics, his research embraces both advancing computational methodologies and utilising these to resolve real world problems. Several of his Masters and PhD graduates occupy senior academic positions at universities in SA and abroad.His academic management experience spans Academic Headships; Executive Dean, Faculty of Science; University Council member and its Executive and Finance sub-committees. He led teams which developed University and ICT Strategy. On retirement he became head of research at CHPC (Center for High Performance Computing) and successfully motivated for the establishment of the Very Large Database System—now DIRISA (Data Intensive Research Initiative for SA), then became manager of SANReN (SA National Research Network) before assuming present role. Colin has international cyberinfrastructure experience, having served on G8+O5 data panels, EU FP7 evaluation and review panels, EU Expert Advisory Group on Research Infrastructures and e-Infrastructures; national research infrastructure initiatives. Has advised SA Universities. He is also engaged in a DST initiative to develop a multi-University e-Research Masters across all disciplines.
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