Collaborate, Create, Communicate

Home again … but what a journey

As summer dawns in the Northern Hemisphere and many of us begin making plans for our long annual holidays, I look back on the past few months with a sense of satisfaction. Although it’s nice to be able to take a break away from all things office, I’m proud of the work that has been undertaken by many people (both within and outside the Program) in their bid to make the results of CGIAR research more accessible, and to make people and organizations more connected with one another.

This newsletter highlights several events that recently took place and involved key Program issues. Firstly, there was the ShareFair Cali, which continued the good work laid down during last year’s Fair in Rome and exposed 200 participants from 18 countries to training sessions on knowledge sharing tools, Google Apps, and Open Access, to name a few. Then there was AAGW 2010, which brought together GIS experts from around the globe, saw the launch of the AgCommons Service Bureau, and rewarded innovative approaches in the sharing and application of geospatial science. Thirdly, there was the XIII IAALD World Congress held in Montpellier, France, where the Program facilitated a side session on ‘Web 2.0 and Social Media for research uptake.’

In between these events, we generated much excitement with the launch of CGBooks, a collaborative effort between the CGIAR and Google that extends the reach of CGIAR research by making our publications searchable over the Internet.

Also worthy of mention is the new CGIAR-ESRI Agreement that will give 15 CGIAR Centers access to ArcGIS software, thereby ensuring that scientists in every Center have the necessary GIS technology to create data collections on population, poverty, climate, soils, crops, livestock, etc.; our recent thoughts on CGMap and Ongoing Research – how the two online tools complement each other, their differences and an honest opinion of their future; and Antonella Pastore’s experiences with cloud computing in The ghost in the machine, or tricks for the online presenter.

In other news, we are hard at work helping to select the CGIAR’s first “One Corporate System”. More on that soon.

Last, but most certainly not least, I’m happy to announce that Nadia Manning-Thomas has rejoined the Program. Actually, that’s not quite true, Nadia has already announced her own return in a blog post a la ICT-KM.

En route to my holiday destination next week, I will stop off at Google in California to give a presentation on the lessons learned adopting Google tools and discuss how the CGIAR and Google might move forward together. Then I’ll take my leave and come back in few weeks with my Google tales.

Happy holidays!

Enrica Porcari

Leader, ICT-KM Program and Chief Information Officer, CGIAR

AAGW 2010 Roundup

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The 2nd Africa Agriculture Geospatial Week (AAGW) opened earlier this month in Nairobi with a speech from Kenya’s Minister for Agriculture, Hon. Dr Sally Kosgei. Her thought-provoking address challenged researchers and GIS practitioners to ‘discuss steps towards the development of delivery mechanisms for making geospatial information accessible to poor smallholders in the villages across Sub-Saharan […]

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XIII IAALD World Congress Roundup

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Montpellier at the end of April was abuzz with eager participants heading to the XIII IAALD World Congress. One of the event’s attractions was a side session on Web 2.0 and Social Media for research uptake, which was facilitated by the ICT-KM Program’s Antonella Pastore, and Pier Andrea Pirani of Euforic Services. Designed to help […]

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ShareFair Cali Roundup

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The recently concluded ShareFair in Cali was a huge success and generated a number of posts on the ICT-KM Program’s blog. To help give you a more complete picture of this week-long event, we’ve consolidated the various posts for easy reading.
Find out what happened on the first day of the ShareFair, which saw 200 participants […]

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Announcing new CGIAR-ESRI Agreement to Provide Foundation for Global Agricultural Progams

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Nairobi, 8 June 2010 – New Site License Agreement with ESRI Providing GIS technology in Centers Around the Globe as They Work to Increase Food Security and Agricultural Productivity
ESRI announces that the Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research (CGIAR) has signed a site license providing access to ArcGIS software across its 15 research centers throughout […]

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CGMap and Ongoing Research: what’s up with projects in the CGIAR – Part 1 of 2

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If I had to wish something bad to my worst enemy, I’d wish they get caught in the definition of project as an information object. I’d get rid of them in a snap, sending them astray into a maze of definitions, schemas, standards or lack thereof.
Why so cynical, you may ask… […]

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See also Part 2

CGIAR teams up with Google to expand the reach of agricultural research

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When the custodians of years of research team up with the most popular Internet search engine in the world, you can expect something extraordinary to happen.
Imagine if you could search over 2,000 books, more than 50,000 pages from books published by the largest agricultural research consortium in the world; browse that library online and immediately download […]
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