The World Bank has officially published the report on Role and Status of NRENs in Africa compiled by its consultant Michael Foley.
The report, published in the World Bank’s Open Knowledge repository, highlights the story of development of NRENs in Africa and the key roles the NRENs are playing in enabling innovation and advancing science and education on the continent.
It also aims at providing guidance to governments, institutions and development partners on how to approach the provision of advanced ICT services to the higher education and research community in Africa and how the World Bank can best support this.
According to the report, 18 countries on the continent have operational NRENs with NRENs from 36 countries yet to fully operationalise their NRENs. The report informs that of the 36 non NREN operational countries, 5 countries have no recorded information on the establishment of an NREN while the rest of the 31 countries have NRENs in various stages of development.
The report says there is so far no information of NREN development in Central African Republic, Republic of Congo, Djibouti, Libya and Lesotho.
On the other end, the report has assessed the progressed of the 18 operational NRENs and has ranked them according to their varying levels of progress.
NRENs of Algeria, Egypt, Kenya and South Africa have been ranked as the most progressive with a highest score of 6 which denotes a full maturity stage of an NREN.
Commenting on the report, author Michael Foley said: “Hopefully, this World Bank report can support the advocacy efforts of practitioners on the ground as they seek government and institutional backing in the establishment, or further growth, of their local and regional research and education networks, which are key to inclusion in global academic activity.”
The report is available for download.