OpenCon 2016

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The OpenCon 2016 organizing team in partnership with University of Lagos Engineering Society will be hosting an OpenCon event in Lagos (Julius Berger Hall, University of Lagos) on December 23, 2016.

OpenCon satellite events are local conference about Open issues that are held in partnership with a global annual OpenCon meeting in Washington DC. This event will bring together students, researchers, and early career professionals who are interested in learning and advocating for open access in education, research materials and research data. Social inclusion and economic empowerment can be achieved in a society where citizens have universal access to information and knowledge, this meeting was set up to take giant steps towards the adoption of open access policies in Nigeria.

The necessity of its adoption is that research and information has been a vehicle of national development for many advanced countries; contributing immensely to educational enhancement, science and technology, manpower development, promotion of national objectives, and increase in a nation’s international cooperation. These are the major sectors of national growth, therefore the target at Opencon is to encourage free (without a price tag) flow of information (research publications, educational materials etc.) that may be beneficial to the masses for self-development as well as advancement in research and technology across all walks of life. This is a fundamental principle for bridging the knowledge gaps between privileged and under-privileged communities. We therefore have a vision of reaching that potential where every student has access to quality basic education regardless of his/her financial strength and every person has the necessary information data to be the best at his/her chosen profession.

Access to research works in Nigeria has been a big issue, especially in recent times when technology advancement has redefined the system. The authors of this work face a major problem of getting visibility for their work while the students on the other hand encounter a problem of accessibility to these works due to high cost of journal subscription. This is why we need open access. The evolution of open access has proffered two major solutions to this problem, which are; Open access publishing and open access institutional repositories.
On a larger landscape, these problems can be addressed permanently by adoption of open access policies as a nation, which is why we as students are leading the change. Intellectual works should not be hidden behind paywalls, especially not the ones funded by government with taxpayers’ money. We therefore believe that adoption of open access policies can better be achieved through advocacy and support from individuals and policy makers.

OpenCon is not just a conference, it is a growing community of people all around the world who believe in a positive change through open access in our individual countries. We currently have over 300 registered attendees and 50 student volunteers for this conference. We already have lined up for the event, speakers like Funke Opeke (CEO, MainOne technologies), Lorraine Chuen (representative from Right to Research organization in Washington DC), Kayode Yussuf (tech lead at Creative Commons Nigeria), Godwin Benson (CEO, and Adisa Bolutife (Open access advocate, University of Lagos ).

To attend this event, kindly visit the event website and make reservation through the link below.

“It is a valuable opportunity to be part of a community that would make great impact through Open access.”

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