With research, the positive correlation between successful implementation of ICTs and economic development has been proven. It therefore follows that, since most of SSA countries’ economies are driven by the agricultural sector, investments in agricultural-based ICTs should lead to GDP growth in these countries. By integrating indigenous and scientific drought forecasts, ITIKI has partially achieved this goal. ITIKI Plus on the other hand, enhances ITIKI by incorporating cropping information to support farmers’ tactical and routine decisions. Through pilots projects run in Kenya, Mozambique and South Africa, we demonstrate the assertion that farmers’ production is improved, using technologies such as Machine learning (ML), Computer vision, Artificial neural network ANN), Fuzzy cognitive mapping, Semantic technology, Wireless sensor network (WSN), Internet of Things (IoT), Ontology, Big Data analytics, Knowledge representation, Stream processing etc.
Optimisation problems are part and parcel of day-to-day activities. In the case of Africa’s agricultural-based economies, optimisation problems can be extended to the various aspects of agricultural production, such as drought prediction, crop yield optimisation and crop insurance benefit maximisation using heuristics and metaheuristics solution. This research explores the possibility of applying ANNs to optimize the outcome of all the decision reached from the myriad aspects presented above.
Africa is one of the continents that are considered to have less of crop lands in comparison with other continents such as America and Asia. The application of remote sensing technology to assess & monitor the vegetation health in Africa with other conventional technology is not yet widely adopted. This research explores the application of indigenous knowledge, ML and satellite imagery to optimise cropping decisions by small-scale farmers, a case study of uMgungundlovu Municipality, South Africa
The rise of global temperatures makes the population tropical mega-cities vulnerable to heat stress, infectious diseases, and air pollution. In Free State Province, SA, the effects of climate change, with drought seasons, heatwaves are becoming more intensive. These extreme weather changes have resulted in the infectious disease outbreaks. This research focuses on the development of an intelligent prediction model for infectious disease outbreaks: an ensemble of ML, big climate data and IK.
Africa's Malaria Epidemic Predictor: Application of Machine Learning on Malaria Incidence and Climate Data. In Proceedings of the 2020 the 4th International Conference on Compute and Data Analysis (pp. 29-37). https://doi.org/10.1145/3388142.3388158
A Distributed Stream Processing Middleware Framework for Real-Time Analysis of Heterogeneous Data on Big Data Platform: Case of Environmental Monitoring. Sensors 2020, 20(11), 3166. https://doi.org/10.3390/s20113166
Counting What Counts: A researcher Productivity Scoring Framework for South Africa’s Universities of Technology. South African Journal of Higher Education (in press), 2020.
Mitigating the Impacts of Environmental Pollution in Lejweleputswa District through Integration of Local and Scientific Knowledge. In the proceedings of the EAI INTERSOL 2020: 4th EAI International Conference on Innovations and Interdisciplinary Solutions for Underserved Areas. Held in Nairobi, Kenya, March 8-9, 2020
Africa’s Malaria Epidemic Predictor: Application of Machine Learning on Malaria Incidence and Climate Data. In Proceedings of the 2020 the 4th International Conference on Compute and Data Analysis (ICCDA 2020). Association for Computing Machinery, New York, NY, USA, 29–37. DOI:https://doi.org/10.1145/3388142.3388158
ITIKI Success Story: Classic Application of Design Thinking. In the proceedings of The IST-Africa 2020 Conference Proceedings, to be held in Kampala, Uganda, May 2020. Paul Cunningham and Miriam Cunningham (Eds), IIMC International Information Management Corporation, 2019
Integration of Indigenous knowledge, climate data, satellite imagery and machine learning to optimize cropping decisions by small-scale farmers. A case study of uMgungundlovu District Municipality, South Africa. In the proceedings of the EAI INTERSOL 2020: 4th EAI International Conference on Innovations and Interdisciplinary Solutions for Underserved Areas. Held in Nairobi, Kenya, March 8-9, 2020.
Potable Water Quality Monitoring: A Survey of Intelligent Techniques. In 2019 International Multidisciplinary Information Technology and Engineering Conference (IMITEC) (pp. 1-6). IEEE. https://doi.org/10.1109/IMITEC45504.2019.9015868
Development of an Artificial Neural Network Model for Predicting Surface Water Level: Case of Modder River Catchment Area. In: Zitouni R., Agueh M. (eds) Emerging Technologies for Developing Countries. AFRICATEK 2018. Lecture Notes of the Institute for Computer Sciences, Social Informatics and Telecommunications Engineering, vol 260. Springer, Cham. PDF
A Middleware for Cyber Physical Systems in an Internet of Things Environment: Case of for Mobile Asset Tracking. In: Zitouni R., Agueh M. (eds) Emerging Technologies for Developing Countries. AFRICATEK 2018. Lecture Notes of the Institute for Computer Sciences, Social Informatics and Telecommunications Engineering, vol 260. Springer, Cham. PDF
Internet of Things-Based Framework for Public Transportation Fleet Management in Non-Smart City. In: Zitouni R., Agueh M. (eds) Emerging Technologies for Developing Countries. AFRICATEK 2018. Lecture Notes of the Institute for Computer Sciences, Social Informatics and Telecommunications Engineering, vol 260. Springer, Cham. PDF
Complementary Methods for Human Visual Perception of Visual Weather Lore Sky Objects Using Machine Learning Methods. In 2019 Open Innovations Conference proceedings, held in Cape Town South Africa, between 2 and 4 October 2019 (OI). (pp. 1-8). IEEE. https://doi.org/10.1109/OI.2019.8908176
Using Internet of Things for sustainable groundwater drought management in the Modder River catchment of South Africa. In 2019 Open Innovations (OI) (pp. 63-70). IEEE. https://doi.org/10.1109/OI.2019.8908246
ITIKI Plus: A Mobile Based Application for Integrating Indigenous Knowledge and Scientific Agro-Climate Decision Support for Africa’s Small-Scale Farmers. In 2019 IEEE 2nd International Conference on Information and Computer Technologies (ICICT), pp. 303-309. IEEE, 2019. https://doi.org/10.1109/INFOCT.2019.8711059
Downscaling Africa’s Drought Forecasts through Integration of Indigenous and Scientific Drought Forecasts Using Fuzzy Cognitive Maps. Geosciences, 8(4), p.135. 2018. https://doi.org/10.3390/geosciences8040135
IKON-OWL: Using Ontologies for Knowledge Representation of Local Indigenous Knowledge on Drought. In the 24th Americas Conference on Information Systems (AMCIS 2018) Proceedings. Held in New Orleans, Louisiana, USA, 16-18 August 2018. https://dblp.org/rec/conf/amcis/AkanbiM18
Towards the Development of a Rule-Based Drought Early Warning Expert Systems Using Indigenous Knowledge. In 2018 International Conference on Advances in Big Data, Computing and Data Communication Systems (icABCD), pp. 1-8. IEEE, 2018. https://doi.org/10.1109/ICABCD.2018.8465465
Semantic interoperability middleware architecture for heterogeneous environmental data sources. In 2018 IST-Africa Week Conference (IST-Africa) (pp. Page-1). IEEE.
Using Fuzzy Cognitive Maps in Modelling and Representing Weather Lore for Seasonal Weather Forecasting Over East and Southern Africa. African Journal of Indigenous Knowledge Systems (Indilinga). Volume 16 Number 1, June 2017.
A Framework for Accurate Drought Forecasting System Using Semantics-Based Data Integration Middleware. In: Glitho R., Zennaro M., Belqasmi F., Agueh M. (eds) e-Infrastructure and e-Services. AFRICOMM 2015. Lecture Notes of the Institute for Computer Sciences, Social Informatics and Telecommunications Engineering, vol 171. Springer, Cham. https://link.springer.com/chapter/10.1007/978-3-319-43696-8_12
Towards semantic integration of heterogeneous sensor data with indigenous knowledge for drought forecasting. In Proceedings of the Doctoral Symposium of the 16th International Middleware Conference, p. 2. ACM, 2015. https://doi.org/10.1145/2843966.2843968
Scientific Verification of Weather Lore for Drought Forecasting–The Role of Fuzzy Cognitive Mapping. In Proceedings of the IST-Africa 2015 Conference, Lilongwe, Malawi (pp. 1-8).
An Innovative Drought Early Warning System for Sub-Saharan Africa: Integrating Modern and Indigenous Approaches. African Journal of Science, Technology, Innovation and Development (AJSTID) Vol. 7, Iss. 1, 2015, Pages 8 - 25
Dr Mwagha career spans academic teaching and research to industry and he has over a decade experience leading research and solution development involving computing technologies. Prior to joining academics, He was an ICT Officer for e-government, a Kenyan government directorate that develops and supports solutions for public services. He has he held faculty positions in computer science departments at Pwani University and Taita Taveta Universities in Kenya. He holds a Ph.D. Information Technology (CUT, Free State) and MSc in Computer Science (University of Nairobi) as well as a B.S. in Computer Mathematics and Science (Kenya Methodist University). He has research interests span the Internet of Things, Machine Learning, Computer Vision and Fuzzy Cognitive Mapping.
Ms Mbele is an Information Technology Lecturer at Central University of Technology with a history of teaching software development and networking. She holds a Master’s Degree in Information Technology from Central University of Technology (2018). Her research is based on “maintaining sustainable cities” she is currently developing an environmental pollution monitoring tool that integrates scientific and local knowledge for the District of Lejweleputswa, she received a Women in Science award from the Department of Science and Technology (DST) for her research in 2016.
Tanki Moloabi is a Deputy Director at the Free State Provincial Treasury (Bloemfontein) in South Africa and the head of the Information Technology Unit. She holds a BTech degree (2003-2005) from the Central University of Technology (CUT) in Bloemfontein, South Africa and has received a Master’s degree in the specialised field of Information and Technology from CUT in April 2019. Ms. Moloabi has an extensive managerial experience as an IT expert playing the role of, among others, server administrator, manager of the ICT Team (including programmers, ICT Security, server administrator) and ICT Governance framework implementation at Provincial Treasury. Currently, she is a member of: Provincial Treasury ICT Steering committee, the Provincial Government Information Technology Council, an Advisory committee to all Heads of Department of the FS Provincial Government (FSPG) on the implementation of technological innovations, IT infrastructure and system design within the public sector to ensure seamless service delivery and system interlinkages.
Ms Thotela completed her National Diploma in Information Technology, Cum Laude, with Central University of Technology, and she majored in Software development. She then went on to complete her Bachelor of Technology, Cum Laude at the same institution. She is currently studying towards her Master of Technology in Information Technology. Portia is a passionate and determined woman who has lived to defy the odds, and practices excellence in everything that she commits to. One of her passions is women empowerment and she believes that by changing one life, you could change a nation. She is the founder of Your Dream Dance and grooming Academy, which is a Non-profit organization with the aim to empower women and children in disadvantaged communities.
Mr Maphats’oe obtained his Masters in Information technology in 2017, under the supervision of Professor Muthoni Masinde. It was through this period he learned about and became involved in the wonderful initiative that is URIDA, as well as the novel methods through which we may try and combat food shortages by predicting and preparing for dry drought seasons in Africa.
Central University of Technology, Free State, South Africa.
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