• info@vodan-totafrica.info

The GO FAIR Implementation Network Africa (IN-Africa)


The GO FAIR Implementation Network Africa (IN-Africa) is an open network and is supported by African universities in South, East, and West Africa. The IN launched in August 22nd, 2019 at Leiden University. During the launch, Kampala International University (KIU) from Uganda and Great Zimbabwe University (GZU) established collaboration with Leiden University (Leiden Centre of Data Science, GO FAIR, and the Leiden Institute of Advanced Computer Science (LIACS)). The focus was on capacity building through joint Ph.D. research to establish FAIR data points and data centers in Africa. These will help boost connected science and data-relevant services, such as digital health.

 The GO FAIR Implementation Network Africa (IN-Africa) acknowledges the potential of global development in building an internet of data and services (IFDS) and considers:

  • The possibility for African universities and service providers to be connected to IFDS;
  • The benefit of the FAIR principles to help solve the problem of the current extraction of data from the continent without returning benefits;
  • The possibility of governance of data that will benefit the African continent;
  • the emerging possibility through FAIR to root digital data within a philosophy that data are owned by the data subject;
  • The exploration of the contribution that African philosophy can make to the global IFDS due to its epistemology of united and collective existence expressed within local realities;
  • The engagement with the FAIR initiative to strengthen an African connection, perspective, and orientation in a globally connected world.

Central to the Implementation Network is the African expression of the IFDS. The network considers the opportunities of data science for economic potential, especially for Africa’s youth, and the need for education and training in this area. It was further considered that the options of application in the context of digital health and other areas of digital development are vast and that the IFDS may provide a good foundation for its sustainable development.

A team of African experts is available to carry out this endeavor and adequate political support could be garnished to help bring this initiative to life. The network seeks to bring together African expertise, from within the African continent in all its diversity, and in the diaspora, in collaboration with colleagues from other parts of the world, with the explicit objective to strengthen the lead African scholars, decision-makers, and practitioners in the global network of implementation for internet of FAIR data and services on the African continent.

Main Purpose and Objectives

The IN-Africa will aim to learn from other GO FAIR Implementation Networks and align with the FAIR principles, but will equally seek to enrich the global Network with its exploration, findings and conclusions.

Overarching Principle of Operation

The Africa GO FAIR Implementation Network commits to comply with the Rules of Engagement of GO FAIR Implementation Networks

Targeted Objectives of the IN-Africa

Establishing an open, overarching network for implementation of the FAIR principles of a machine and human-readable IFDS, based on the principles of African philosophy and inclusiveness, serving African science, supported by African governance of data, data ownership, protection, and security, and linking African science to the global FAIR community based on practices and experience.

The topics will be handled by ten working groups, set out in the Activity Plan (linked below). The work in the IN-Africa may lead to new implementation networks within this range of sub-areas or outside this range into new areas.

Main Tasks

Task 1: Complete the execution plan & roadmap as part of the process of becoming a GO FAIR Implementation Network which includes the establishment of the working groups, their leadership, and membership, and agreement on a timeline;
Task 2: Further exploration and expansion of the working groups, linking with the Global FAIR Implementation Networks where relevant and establishing of practical deliverables and timelines;
Task 3: Implementation and mutual consultation, adaptation of time-lines and deliverables if required and sharing of products.

Manifesto and activity plan

Link to manifesto in PDF
Link to Activity plan in pdf

If are you interested in joining GO FAIR Implementation Network Africa, visit here