Open MENA has been an active participant to several different facets of the project; our contributions span the initial preparatory workshop to our future first-of-a-kind research on the ‘data revolution’ in MENA. We are ever thankful to the IDRC, to the main project partners at the American University in Cairo and to the other project partners at Al-Akhawayn University (Morocco) and Birzeit University (Palestine) for their trust and for providing us with the opportunity to undertake those efforts.
The Data-Driven Innovation in MENA series of workshops includes a diverse range of activities: ideathons and hackathons for youth, training on data-rich communication for students and professionals alike, and a high-level regional workshop. Many of these activities are in collaboration with the Canadian Embassy, UNDP and ILO (International Labour Organisation) in Egypt.
At Open MENA, we are excited to be actively involved in the run-up to the event, helping out with programme curation and interacting with innovators from Tunisia and Palestine. During the event itself, we will present the major findings of our research on the data revolution potential in the MENA region and provide training for data-rich communication for media students and professionals.
Why is data important, you might ask? As recent research showcases it, (open) data has positive social and political impact: it has contributed controlling diseases, fighting adverse social phenomena, and improving aid effectiveness and public services.
This article was originally posted on OpenMena.net
Rayna Stamboliyska is an independent researcher and writer, with a particular interest in risk assessment, crisis management, data and technology in conflict and post-conflict. As a technology geek, Rayna has become a strong advocate for free/open source software and open data. She has served as board member of renowned organisations in France and elsewhere. Rayna founded RS Strategy, which advises decision-makers and businesses in the Middle East and the Balkans, and Open MENA, an action research and policy think-tank promoting open knowledge in MENA.