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Special session

1. Emerging Digital Technologies in Restoration Efforts of Fresh Water Lakes of Africa-

Chair: Dr Fisseha Mekuria, CSIR, Chief Research Scientist, South Africa.

The importance and application of emerging digital technologies for biodiversity protection and restoration of natural ecosystems is becoming evident through the current focus on environmental protection actions. Emerging 5G and 4IR technology standards are therefore expected to provide use cases which describe their contribution in this respect. The initiatives for “Emerging Technologies for Good” (ET4Good) by ITU and the UN declaration of a decade (2021-2030) as the decade of biodiversity and ecosystem restoration should be a concern and involve research communities, technology industry and society all over the world. Currently the contribution of emerging digital technologies is needed to support humanity in restoration and preservation of biodiversity of nature and improving the livelihood of global communities. The special session will take this and current technology-based interventions, with a case study based on restoration of the fresh water lakes of Africa. The special session will allow for 2 topical presentations and will be followed by an expert panel discussion with invited experts.

2.Digital Transformation of healthcare

Presenter : Dr. Shegaw

Abstract: The society that we are living is experiencing a paradigm shift due to transformative emerging technological trends. Healthcare is one of the domains that has been significantly influenced by emerging digital technologies. Remarkable achievements in the sphere of ICT have created an enabling environment for widespread deployment of digital health globally. Today, healthcare is not anymore primarily something that takes place in the confines of patient-doctor relationship. Instead, healthcare is transformed into a service distributed into a complex network of both human and non-human actors such as databases, hospital information systems, digital health record systems, routine data management systems, online patient communities, provision of remote healthcare services (telemedicine/telehealth), services through mobile telephone technology (mHealth), connection of medical devices (internet of things), smart homes with ambient assistant technologies, health knowledge management and distant learning for health workers (eLearning)..etc. The new normal guide and shape the production and use of health-related information and knowledge. There are, however, many impediments to attaining the benefits digital transformation and universal health coverage in most developing countries, including but not limited to the high operational and financial costs needed to expand access to many areas where there is no current access, while sustaining an acceptable level of quality of services.

According to a study by Olu et al. (2019 ), whilst many African countries have developed and adopted digital health strategies, implementation of many of such strategies remain slow due several factors including: lack of requisite governance framework, institutional capacity, and funding. Despite this backdrop, Digital Health (DH) has gained a lot of traction globally as an engine for innovation to address these challenges and leapfrog attainment of the SDGs and UHC in developing countries.

3. IEEE Awareness Session -

Presenter : IEEE Kenya Section, IEEE African Council

4. ISoC -

Presenter : Dr.Dawit Bekele

Draft Program for the Community Network Session

The session will present the most critical components of CN deployment and management, which include sustainability and business models, Technologies mostly used by CNs and lastly governance and ownership structures, models for CNs.

1. Presentation - Introduction to CN Model
2. Presentation - Sustainability & business model - Sustainability is one of the core components of a successful Community Network. While setting up a community network, there should be plans to have a sustainability/business model on how this Community Network will run with or without outside support from the onset.
3. Presentation -Technical Operations of CNs -focus on technologies employed by CNs
4. Presentation - CN Governance models – Organizational and ownership structures of successful CNs in Africa
5. Discussion


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