Nordic Africa Days 2014: My Report

During the weekend 26-27 September, I took part in the Nordic Africa Institute biannual conference Nordic Africa Days. Here is my report!

  1. Hi there! I'm on my way to #nad2014 @NordicAfrica &looking forward to meet tweeps @finnowl @ulrichtadajeu @JamaMusse http://t.co/meVFzTGvKW

    Hi there! I’m on my way to #nad2014 @NordicAfrica &looking forward to meet tweeps @finnowl @ulrichtadajeu @JamaMusse pic.twitter.com/meVFzTGvKW
  2. As I am the food for my small baby, she had to come along. She demanded we started with the Youth and Politics panel…
  3. In Panel 22 on Youth & Politics, Akin Iwilade challenged the notion of “marginalized youth” and who becomes a militant #NAD2014
  4. Next @nannajordt told us about "hustling" for environmental rights in rural Kenya #nad2014 http://t.co/KrjUEtSM3Q

    Next @nannajordt told us about “hustling” for environmental rights in rural Kenya #nad2014 pic.twitter.com/KrjUEtSM3Q
  5. My @Ashesi colleague Joseph Oduro Frimpong presents political cartoons & photoshop pics from Ghana #NAD2014 #Woyome http://t.co/CQMQFmVEZs

    My @Ashesi colleague Joseph Oduro Frimpong presents political cartoons & photoshop pics from Ghana #NAD2014 #Woyomepic.twitter.com/CQMQFmVEZs
  6. Q&A “It is easier critiquing power than formulating an alternative…does that distinction matter?”, asks panel chair Elina Oinas #nad2014
  7. How a two-month old fares at #nad2014? She is now asleep forcing me to stand up/rock gently in the back of the room.. http://t.co/YujTbzVwR1

    How a two-month old fares at #nad2014? She is now asleep forcing me to stand up/rock gently in the back of the room.. pic.twitter.com/YujTbzVwR1
  8. In 1,5h @Mo_IbrahimFdn will talk on “Why governance matters” #NAD2014 If you are not in Uppsala, follow @NordicAfrica or watch it online…
  9. The talk can still be viewed online. I followed it on Twitter from my hotel room while breast feeding!
  10. The first day ended with a lovely conference dinner in one of the old student clubs in Uppsala. Next morning the sun was shining…
  11. Sunny and windy walk to the conference venue (Yellow building in back) #nad2014 http://t.co/kqUOG6KPFc

    Sunny and windy walk to the conference venue (Yellow building in back) #nad2014 pic.twitter.com/kqUOG6KPFc
  12. My first panel is about African Studies in the 21st century: @wikipedia & open access hosted by @ASCLeiden #nad2014 http://t.co/zwdS3wICA5

    My first panel is about African Studies in the 21st century: @Wikipedia & open access hosted by @ASCLeiden #nad2014 pic.twitter.com/zwdS3wICA5
  13. Great tip for researchers to make our research more accessible: write abstracts of all your work and put online! #nad2014 #opendata
  14. Find @ASCLeiden repository with free downloads, among the most popular a book on Boko Haram,  https://openaccess.leidenuniv.nl/handle/1887/12483 … #nad2014 #openaccess
  15. Find @ASCLeiden repository with free downloads, among the most popular a book on Boko Haram,  https://openaccess.leidenuniv.nl/handle/1887/12483 … #nad2014 #openaccess
  16. @kajsaha >50,000 publications on Africa, mostly #openaccess from >90 repositories via  http://www.connecting-africa.net 
  17. @kajsaha Africa country portal ASC Leiden (in beta): portal to information resources on >50 African countries  http://countryportal.ascleiden.nl/ 
  18. “As a researcher you have to look at contracts and make sure you have the right to your own work!” – Jos Damen @ASCLeiden #nad14
  19. Information on what resources are available online for free for African researchers via @ASCLeiden  http://www.ilissafrica.de/en/howto/OpenAccessGuide.html …#nad2014
  20. Next came the keynote, I had been looking forward to.
  21. Now the keynote I've been looking forward to: @MJerven "Knowledge and Governance" #nad2014 http://t.co/ve379JXjFu

    Now the keynote I’ve been looking forward to: @MJerven “Knowledge and Governance” #nad2014 pic.twitter.com/ve379JXjFu
  22. Outline of the speech 1. Validity, 2. Reliability 3.Governance 4. Conclusion. I'm such a nerd to be excited! #nad2014 http://t.co/EtJFATFHmL

    Outline of the speech 1. Validity, 2. Reliability 3.Governance 4. Conclusion. I’m such a nerd to be excited! #nad2014 pic.twitter.com/EtJFATFHmL
  23. “Scholars are mistaken when they trust @worldbankdata, but not, say, Sudanese state data. It’s the same!” – @MJerven #nad2014
  24. “There is an unhealthy academic divide: accepting GDP data at face value vs. dismissing the measurement” – @MJerven #NAD2014
  25. To illustrate 'poor numbers' @MJerven uses Ghana's entrance into middle incomes status on Nov 5th, 2010. #nad2014 http://t.co/Y7R41tMaRZ

    To illustrate ‘poor numbers’ @MJerven uses Ghana’s entrance into middle incomes status on Nov 5th, 2010. #nad2014 pic.twitter.com/Y7R41tMaRZ
  26. On governance: “in order to have evidence based policies you need…some type of evidence” – @MJerven #NAD2014
  27. Next @MJerven critiques the #MDGs as they take away from national data collection resources. #nad2014
  28. “It’s not so much about tempering with statistics, but more ignorance of the importance of statistics” – @MJerven #NAD2014
  29. Then an interesting debate started on Twitter.
  30. @kajsaha how come it doesn’t feel like we’re a middle income country? Or it’s not about feelings eh? #Ghana 🙂 @MJerven
  31. @nas009 @kajsaha @MJerven I guess it’s about paper feeling. Good in books, worst in reality.
  32. @kajsaha @nas009 @MJerven @BloggingGhana #Ghana is not poor neither is it a middle income country!
  33. @kajsaha @kofiemeritus @nas009 @MJerven @BloggingGhana Its not. The poorest is one who can’t afford to laugh. Take a good look at Ghana.haha
  34. Back to the keynote.
  35. “Presidents are elected based on delivering jobs, but there is no data on the labor market!” – @MJerven #NAD2014
  36. Wrapping up with constructive ideas 1. Data can come with warnings if based on guesses @MJerven #nad2014
  37. 2. Development agencies coordinating not just goals, but data collection as well #nad2014
  38. 3. Incentives and human resources in statistical offices #nad2014
  39. Multitasking mother and researcher @kajsaha frequently tweeting from the Key Note Speech #nad2014. @NordicAfrica http://t.co/FH7TuVeg1F

    Multitasking mother and researcher @kajsaha frequently tweeting from the Key Note Speech #nad2014@NordicAfrica pic.twitter.com/FH7TuVeg1F
  40. Final panel was my own. My topic was “Have you ever seen a plane seat before?” Migration narratives among university students in Ghana.
  41. ooohhh Godd luck! RT @kajsaha: Wish me luck! Panel chair introducing me! #nad2014 http://t.co/klV7yrWRTU

    ooohhh Godd luck! RT @kajsaha: Wish me luck! Panel chair introducing me! #nad2014 pic.twitter.com/klV7yrWRTU
  42. In my panel Tekalign Ayalew talks about Ethiop-Eritrean Migrants to Sweden. #nad2014 http://t.co/fEolENrWn9

    In my panel Tekalign Ayalew talks about Ethiop-Eritrean Migrants to Sweden. #nad2014 pic.twitter.com/fEolENrWn9
  43. Last panelist at #nad2014 is Viveca Motsieloa who is presenting a self-reflective paper on being mixed-race in Ghana. http://t.co/mLYetMOPu5

    Last panelist at #nad2014 is Viveca Motsieloa who is presenting a self-reflective paper on being mixed-race in Ghana. pic.twitter.com/mLYetMOPu5
  44. Then the conference was officially over! Hope to come back in 2016!
  45. Chairs are stacked, whiteboards are cleaned & people in prints are discussing where to have drinks. #nad2014 is over! Thanks @NordicAfrica !
  46. This drink is for @ulrichtadajeu! Next time you'll join us in the flesh! http://t.co/RhHPSNrwa7

    This drink is for @ulrichtadajeu! Next time you’ll join us in the flesh! pic.twitter.com/RhHPSNrwa7
  47. A cool think was the Camerooninan student that was following the conference on Twitter. He got this (photo of a) beer from me for dedication to academia!