Participants in the Geospatial Data Training Workshop at the Accra City Hotel in Accra, Ghana, September 6-8, organized by the West Africa hub of SERVIR.
More than 20 data experts and managers met in Accra, Ghana September 6-8 to participate in a training workshop on geospatial data management, policy, and use, organized in support of the West Africa hub of SERVIR, a joint development initiative of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) and the United States Agency for International Development (USAID). Greg Yetman, associate director for geospatial applications, and Alex de Sherbinin, associate director for science applications, co-led the workshop, together with John Del Corral of the International Research Institute for Climate and Society (IRI). The workshop addressed the importance of standards, open data, and sound data management practices, and included hands-on exercises in metadata development and use of IRI's climate data library. Sessions were also held on the architecture for the new SERVIR West Africa hub data portal and the development of data sharing agreements between members of the SERVIR consortium. Consortium members include the Regional Center of Agro-Meteorology (AGRHYMET), the Center for Ecological Monitoring (CSE) of Senegal, the African Center for Meteorology Applied to Development (ACMAD), the Centre for Remote Sensing and Geographic Information Systems (CERSGIS) of Ghana, the African Regional Institute for Geospatial Information Science and Technology (AfriGIST), and International Crops Research Institute for the Semi-Arid Tropics (ICRISAT). CIESIN is part of a team led by Tetra Tech, Inc. that is supporting development of the West Africa hub, which aims to help stakeholders and decision makers make more informed decisions related to agriculture and food security, water resources and hydroclimatic disasters, weather and climate, and land cover and land use change and ecosystems.
In parallel with the SERVIR workshop, climate scientist Sylwia Trzaska, together with de Sherbinin, participated in the West Africa Biodiversity and Climate Change (WA BiCC) project's annual work plan validation workshop September 6-7. The two-day workshop involved project staff and representatives of regional partners, including the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), the Abidjan Convention for Co-Operation in the Protection and Development of the Marine and Coastal environment of the West and Central African Region, and the Manor River Union, as well as representatives of USAID. Workshop participants reviewed progress to date and activities proposed for the next year. Trzaska briefly presented the results of a vulnerability assessment carried out by CIESIN in the mangrove areas of Sierra Leone last year. CIESIN is also a partner with Tetra Tech in supporting the USAID-funded WA BiCC project.