Eko-Konnect 2023 Users Conference brought together international speakers and practitioners in the research and education networking community, including librarians, researchers, and policymakers from across Nigeria.

This year’s event was online due to safety concerns across the country. We sincerely hope that the 2024 conference will resume as a physical meeting with the option to join online.

The theme of this year’s conference Promoting Nigerian Research With Open Science, set the stage and follows on from the National Open Science Symposium to implement the outcomes and call to action to deliver a national open science roadmap for Nigeria in 2023 in collaboration with the Research and Education community and all relevant policy and government stakeholders and private sector stakeholders.

The emphasis during the 3-day conference was utilising Persistent Identifiers (PIDs), and transformative agreements for Open Acess to increase access to Open Science infrastructure and increase the visibility of such infrastructure, the outputs, and researchers so that African research outputs are more visible globally and can increase interoperability of infrastructure and easier collaboration with the wider global research ecosystem. Speakers at the conference spoke of the need to quickly adopt Open Science and Open Access policies to promote Nigerian research outputs. Eko-Konnect promised increased advocacy and capacity building in the community across the country in developing open science infrastructure, institutional repositories, and the use of Persistent Identifiers to increase research visibility and scholarly outputs.

The 3-day event ended with an Eko-Konnect Community Day session on Building Earth Observation (EO) and Geographic Information Systems (GIS) Capacity so that Research and Education can bring its expertise and use of Open Science infrastructure like repositories to analyse data gathered from EO and used by GIS to get more timely and granular information that can impact on climate change and food security among other societal impacts. Speakers from the Nigerian Meteorological Agency (NiMET) and the African Women In GIS and moderated by Eko-Konnect talked about their efforts to raise awareness and collaboration opportunities with the R&E community and NRENs like Eko-Konnnect and other stakeholders to increase engagement, communication, capacity building, and Citizen Science within the GEO space.

In his concluding remarks, Mr Owen Iyoha expressed his hope that with concerted, ongoing efforts NRENs in collaboration with other GIS communities and universities, research practice would make a significant impact on Earth Observation (EO) and GIS in 2023.

For more information about the 2023 Eko-Konnect Users Conference, including access to the presentations, use the session links below:

All the conference session videos are available on the Eko-Konnect Youtube channel.