National Research and Education Networks (NRENs) exist in 38 countries in Africa – albeit at different stages of development – with the primary role of connecting research and education institutions and providing them with other value-added services driving digital transformation. When the Covid-19 pandemic spread around the globe, while education and research institutions in the global north immediately moved their activities online, peer institutions in most of Africa  shut down, sending millions of learners home and disrupting their education.

Preparations for the UbuntuNet-Connect 2020 are going on steadily. As announced last month, the conference will be held virtually from 18 to 20 November 2020. The theme for this year will be: Positioning Research and Education During Crises.

The rationale for this theme is as follows:

National Research and Education Networks (NRENs) exist in 38 countries in Africa – albeit at different stages of development – with the primary role of connecting research and education institutions and providing them with other value-added services driving digital transformation. When the Covid-19 pandemic spread around the globe, while education and research institutions in the global north immediately moved their activities online, peer institutions in most of Africa  shut down, sending millions of learners home and disrupting their education.

The reaction of the African research and education community to Covid-19 clearly shows that the institutions were not ready to handle crises of that magnitude. UbuntuNet-Connect 2020 will therefore be held around the theme: Positioning research and education during crises.The conference will feature presentations from Africa and around the world discussing solutions, proposals, projects, initiatives and ideas on how to position Africa’s research and education networking community to be able to handle crises and pandemics.

The conference theme has been broken down into the following sub themes:

  • Sub-theme 1: Off-campus Connectivity and Innovation
  • Sub-theme 2: Policy, Governance (digital transformation) and Partnerships
  • Sub-theme 3: Tools and Services
  • Sub-theme 4: Best practices in e-Learning and Remote Working

Participation is free. For further details and to register for the conference, visit the conference website.

Enquiries may be addressed to uc2020@ubuntunet.net.

Share This