The CGIAR Ongoing Research in Africa Map whose beta version was re-launched in February 2010 has recorded tremendous growth in the number of projects entered as well as the number of users. Currently there are 387 projects registered in the map.
A lot of feedback on the need to reuse the information and more interactive features in the map has been received over the months and this led the entire team which is the CG Collective Action Program in Eastern and Southern Africa and the ICT-KM Program of the CGIAR to review the system and later decided to migrate the website’s content and functionality to a Content Management System (CMS) from the current development framework that will see the incorporation of features that will facilitate the reuse of information and increase sustainability in terms of system maintenance and future extension as well as new look and features on the front end.
Why the focal persons meeting?
One of the key attributes of a successful project is the participation from stakeholders in the planning and development of the project, the Ongoing Research Map is built and designed for the users whose need are at the forefront of our development. To this end, we decided to hold a workshop for the various Ongoing Research Map focal persons in the CG Centers who contribute project information from their various CG Centers and who work closely with scientists in their respective Centers to make sure that the information in the map is accurate and up-to-date.
In the collective spirit of learning and sharing knowledge, the AgKnowledge Africa Share Fair at the International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI) Ethiopia held on 18-21 October, couldn’t provide a better set up for the two days workshop.
The broad aims of this meeting was to incorporate this particular group of end users at the development phase for a critical user review, evaluation and training of the system, to engage in participative planning in matters related to research information in our centers and of course meet face to face for the first time after months and years of online interaction!
What did we achieve?
After a successful two days workshop we were able to collect a broad range of feedback, both positive and negative, on the system being implemented which will play an important role in the current development phase to ensure that the new look Ongoing Research Map is user friendly, informative and makes browsing and updating research project information the coolest thing to do! The entire team was better equipped with the necessary skills and strength to facilitate information and knowledge dissemination, bonds were strengthened and new ones developed, great ideas on how to plan for the launch generated and overall plenty of learning from one another and knowledge sharing.
The passionate team behind the Map who were present for the workshop.
From left to right, standing: Evelyn Katingi (CGIAR Collective Action), Katarlah Taylor (IFPRI), Tiberious Brian Etyang (CIAT), Wubelem Dejene (ILRI), Lucy Gacheru (ILRI), Tezira Lore (ILRI), Anne Munene (ICRAF), Chanchala Kariyawasam (IWMI), Sarah Kibera (CIMMYT)
Seated: Antonella Pastore (CGIAR ICT-KM), Li Ping Ng (CIFOR)
Read related post by Antonella Pastore here and stay tuned for the new look CGIAR Ongoing Research Map!