Bio: Tshiamo Motshegwa, Incoming Director African Open Science Platform (AOSP), University of Botswana, Botswana
Dr Motshegwa is the inaugural Director of the African Open Science Platform (AOSP) with the strategic portfolio to direct and support the AOSP. AOSP aims to position African scientists at the cutting edge of data intensive science by stimulating interactivity and creating opportunity through the development of efficiencies of scale, building critical mass through shared capacities, amplifying impact through a commonality of purpose and voice, and to engage in Global Commons to address continental and global challenges through joint action. He has a Ph.D. in Computer Science from City, University Of London, UK at the School of Mathematics, Computer Science and Engineering.
Regionally Dr Motshegwa has been Chair of the Southern African Development Community (SADC) Technical Experts Working Group developing and implementing the SADC Regional Cyber-infrastructure Framework – this to develop a shared regional commons of compute, data, networks and human capital to enhance regional research, innovation and education and host data and computationally intensive projects of regional impact.
Globally, he is a member of the Open Science Clouds Executives’ Roundtable (OSCER) that promotes collaboration through open science in practice towards optimal global interoperability and reuse of data and services for the benefit of Open Science.
Nationally, Dr Motshegwa was seconded to the Ministry of Tertiary Education Research Science and Technology (Now Ministry of Education), Government of Botswana since November 2020 around Botswana National Digital Transformation Initiative (SmartBotswana) regarding ''Education Towards a Knowledge Based Economy" and the digital transformation of the research , science , technology and innovation (RSTI) ecosystem of the country.
Abstract: "African Open Science Platform - Towards a continental Open Science Vision"
Globally there is movement in the trajectory of developing a Global Open Science Cloud (GOSC) aimed at supporting research collaborations across continents to assist in addressing global science challenges - for example UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), climate change, infectious diseases, and coordination of global disaster risk reduction.
Continents, regions, and countries are also actively developing Open Science platforms and investing in underlying cyberinfrastructures to advance their Research Science Technology and Innovation (RSTI) ecosystems, enhance collaboration and increase their competitiveness and critically, use RSTI as a driver for national and continental priorities.
To this end, a discussion of the African Open Science Platform (AOSP) and progress in its development is given in this talk. AOSP aims to position African scientists at the cutting edge of data intensive science by stimulating interactivity and creating opportunity through the development of efficiencies of scale, building critical mass through shared capacities, amplifying impact through a commonality of purpose and voice, and to engage in Global Commons to address continental and global challenges through joint action.
AOSP pilot study conducted an audit and provided frameworks to guide countries in the development of requisite policies, infrastructure, incentives, and human capital to facilitate leveraging of open science and open data amidst the digital revolution – with all the challenges and opportunities presented.
Furthermore, African regional blocks also have initiatives aligned with AOSP - for example, the Southern African Development Community Cyberinfrastructure Framework – (SADC CI) has been approved by Governments. It is currently supporting some regional projects and was consulted in the AOSP pilot project. The SADC CI facilitates a regional collaborative ecosystem for research, innovation, and teaching by creating a shared commons for data, computational platforms, and human capital development over a fabric of high-speed connectivity afforded by National Education and Research networks (NRENs).
AOSP provides avenues and a trajectory towards developing a Pan African cyberinfrastructure to support advancement of the continent's science enterprise through open science and open data. Furthermore, such cyberinfrastructure will promote collaboration and support addressing higher-level African priority areas and challenges through leveraging the medium of research, science, technology and innovation, and thereby contribute to African advancement and integration to help deliver on the African vision - Agenda 2063 - The Africa We Want.
Keywords – Cyberinfrastructure, Open Science, Open Science Platforms, RSTI Policy and Ecosystems