Gaborone, Botswana,
November 24-25

Theme: Redesigning the Digitalized African College and University

What is a digitalised college or university? Several years ago, it simply involved shifting from analog data and records (eg, paper journal and books) to digital media (eg, e-repositories and library e-materials) or from paper-based process to online processes (eg, student registration). Whereas African colleges and universities are in different stages of the digitalisation process converting existing analog processes into digital ones, they must move to next level to create, new and innovative processes and capabilities based on current and emerging digital technologies.

This involves evaluating and assessing the feasibility of potential innovations, selecting those most useful, and prioritising them based on the benefits and added value they offer to colleges, universities and their broader communities. The process should be captured in agreed upon, well thought out, digital strategies lead to higher efficiency and increased impact of the universities to society.

The UbuntuNet-Connect 2022 conference theme looks broadly at the issues surrounding the redesign of digitalised colleges and universities in Africa. Keynote speeches, panel discussions, and paper presentations will address topics and anchor discussions on where we have come from, where we are today, where we should be heading, and the challenges and opportunities we face along the way.

Topics

Under the general conference theme, broad topics include

  • digital technologies (for teaching, learning, assessment, research, administration),
  • connectivity,
  • digitization in administration,
  • the digital library,
  • digital transformation of research,
  • digital transformation of teaching and learning,
  • digital literacy (of students, staff, and faculty),
  • digital resources,
  • devices and infrastructure (hardware, software, IaaS, SaaS, cloud services),
  • digital content and content quality assurance,
  • institutional collaboration leveraging on Research and Education Networks,
  • access to X (=connectivity, devices, content, …), and
  • supportive policy and regulatory frameworks.

Call for Abstracts for Paper Presentations

We invite potential presenters to submit abstracts (500-600 words) covering any of the topics listed above and under the general conference theme. The submission, uploaded as a single pdf file, must include:

  • Concise, descriptive title
  • Authors names and affiliations
  • Abstract of proposed presentation (500-600 words)
  • Key words (maximum 3)
  • Target audience (from the list below – can be more than one group)

Deadline: July 31, 2022. Notification of outcome shall be by August 31, 2022.

Call for Abstracts for Panel Session Proposals

We welcome proposals for panel sessions covering any of the topics listed above and under the general conference theme. The proposals, uploaded as a single pdf file, must include:

  • Concise, descriptive title
  • Presenters names and affiliations
  • Abstract of proposed panel session (500-600 words)
  • Key words (maximum 3)
  • Target audience (from the list below – can be more than one group)

Deadline: July 31, 2022. Notification of outcome shall be by August 31, 2022.

Sponsorship

We are able to sponsor a limited number of paper presenters and panelists from institutions in Africa.  There are two sponsorship categories:

  1. Full travel and accommodation sponsorship – We will purchase your economy air ticket and pay for your 1/2 board (breakfast and dinner) accommodation for three nights (lunch is provided at the conference).
  2. Accommodation only sponsorship – We will  pay for your 1/2 board (breakfast and dinner) accommodation for three nights (lunch is provided at the conference).

Note:  All those who receive any of the two sponsorships will still need to pay the conference registration fee.

PROGRAMME*

24 November

9:00-10:30 HRS (ROOM A) PLENARY
Opening Ceremony
Keynote address

11:30-13:00 HRS (ROOM A)
Parallel Session 1

11:30-13:00 HRS (ROOM B2)
Parallel Session 2

11:30-13:00 HRS (ROOM B3)
Parallel Session 3

11:30-13:00 HRS (ROOM B4)
Parallel Session 4

14:30-16:00 HRS (ROOM A)
Plenary Panel 1

25 November

9:00-10:30 HRS (ROOM A)
Plenary Panel 2.

11:30-13:00 HRS (ROOM A)
Parallel Session 5

11:30-13:00 HRS (ROOM B2)
Parallel Session 6

11:30-13:00 HRS (ROOM B3)
Parallel Session 7

11:30-13:00 HRS (ROOM B4)
Parallel Session 8

14:30-16:00 HRS (ROOM A)
Plenary Panel 3

*Programme details shall be added once call for abstracts and panel proposals closes.

Who Should Attend/Why should you attend?

  •   College and University ICT Directors (or equivalent) and Librarians – Opportunity to present on the extent of digitalisation in your institution, learn from others as well as gather information and hold discussions on challenges faced, potential digital solutions, and opportunities for collaboration.
  • Researchers, academics, students – Share how you are using digital technologies and the UbuntuNet Alliance/NREN research and education network to support your research, teaching and learning as well as on future directions. Provides opportunities to learn and form new collaborations across the continent.
  • Government officers (related to ICT and Education)
    Expound on your government’s current and future policies, actions, and plans in stimulating the redesign of digitalised African universities. Gives you an opportunity to learn from what is happening in other countries.
  • Private/Industry – Present case studies on the emerging digital technologies in support of the digitalised African University. You have the opportunity to learn and discuss about the challenges universities face, present solutions, seek potential business.
  •   NREN Community – opportunity  to listen to the voice of the customer and learn areas where the services offered by NRENs can be catalyst of and anchor of the redesigned digital college and university.

Important Timelines

  • April 18, 2022 – Opening Call for Paper Presentations and Panel Proposals
  • June 20, 2022 – Opening Early Bird Registration
  • July 31, 2022 – Close Call for Paper Presentations and Panel Proposals
  • August 31, 2022 – Paper presentation and Panel Proposal Notification
  • September 1, 2022 – Close Early Bird Registration
  • November 1, 2022 – Close Regular Registration
  • November 24-25 – UbuntuNet-Connect 2022

Key Links

Sponsorship

UbuntuNet-Connect 2022 presents a rare opportunity for companies to meet Africa’s research and education networking community and market their products and services. This is especially important to organisations and companies with a national, regional or global footprint.

Reasons to Sponsor

  1. Thought Leadership – Position your products, services, and executives as key players in the research and education community.
  2.  Networking – Gain face-to-face access and directly contact typically hard to reach decision-makers and education community.
  3. Branding – The sponsorship will give your company or organisation visibility that it needs in the African research and education community.

The full sponsorship packet can be downloaded from here.

Venue

Phakalane Golf Estate and Hotel Resort

The hotel, located 15km from Gabarone City Center, features an 18-hole golf course.  Gabarone, the Capital of Botswana, is a hub of social and economic activity.

More details and reservations at:

https://www.phakalanehotel.com/

Registration

Early Bird Registration (June 20 – September 1, 2022):
From Institutions in Africa:  $100
Rest of the World: $200

Regular Registration (September 2 – November 1, 2022):
From Institutions in Africa:  $150
Rest of the World: $300

Sponsors

Partners