Two years after the kick off (reported here), we are gaining a lot of momentum with the Regreening Africa initiative.
Last Friday, 20 April, we organized a first mini workshop with master students who are conducting their master thesis project in the context of a Web for Regreening Africa. The Web Alliance for Regreening Africa initiative is primarily funded by two running EC-funded research projects W4RA and m-Voices. However, regarding the societal relevance we are convinced we can deliver a convincing bargain for a larger community of interest to emerge. We have many communities in mind; this workshop aimed at a community at VU of master/PhD students branching their research out from the central theme, but we also have established social networks such as Diaspora and ITGlobal in mind from which we aim to source content contributions.
Our main goal, hence bargain, is to establish a Web of African content through several microprojects. A selection:
- crowdsourcing app for converting pluvial observation data in the Sahel;
- crowdsourcing app for gathering voice fragments in different languages that can be used for voice-based services
- a sustainability analysis for voice-based event organizer;
- RadioMarché: distributed market information system for non-timber tree forest products;
- linked data mash ups for NGOs.
This workshop was a first step in bringing VU Computer Science students’ projects together from Ghana, Ethiopia, Buthan, Iran, Netherlands, Zimbabwe, Suriname, etc. For an overview of the different lines we are exploring check our CAiSE 2012 position paper and ESWC 2012 poster and paper (to be published soon, see list below). Next, some impression from the projects. From my point of view, the meeting was a succes and we agreed to organize a second installment later this year.
- Bon, A.; de Boer, V.; De Leenheer, P.; van Aart, C.; Gyan, N.; Akkermans, H. (2012) The Web of Radios – Introducing African Community Radio as an Interface to the Web of Data. In Proc. of ESWC 2012: 1st Int’l Workshop on Downscaling the Semantic Web, LNCS, Springer, to appear
- de Boer, V.; Gyan, N.; Bon, De Leenheer, P.; van Aart, C.; Gyan, N.; Akkermans, H. (2012) Voice-based Access to Linked Market Data in the Sahel. In Proc. of ESWC 2012: 1st Int’l Workshop on Downscaling the Semantic Web, LNCS, Springer, to appear
- de Boer, V.; De Leenheer, P.; Bon, A.; van Aart, C.; Tuyp, W., Boyera, S.; Allen, M.; Akkermans, H.; Gueret, C. (2012) RadioMarché: Distributed Voice- and Web-interfaced Market Information Systems under Rural Conditions. In Proc. of CAiSE 2012, in press