Monday, March 7, 2016

Across the Last Mile

Roster of International Experts on Communications, Technology and Meteorology Highlight Zambia Speaker List

The Last Mile Workshop in Zambia promises to be an excellent opportunity for learning and finding novel solutions to reach end users and potentially save lives.

We’ve put together an all-star lineup of speakers, interactive sessions and plenty of time for sharing to create an engaging learning environment.

Close interaction between the UNDP CIRDA team and representatives from Climate Information and Early Warning Systems Projects across Africa is sure to create a dynamic and energetic environment. Sessions span the wide breadth of innovative territory that is the Last Mile, with panels focused on everything from communications to commercial market opportunities. Here are some top speakers, resources and innovative enterprises that you can expect to interact with at the workshop.

Identifying Messages and Communicating with the Last Mile Target Audiences
There will be a series of sessions on communications, and workshop participants will be given the tools and building blocks necessary to formulate their own communications strategy by the end of the workshop. These sessions include presentations from a well-respected data journalist from The Guardian, the Managing Director of Click Technologies in Zambia, CIRDA’s Senior Communications Specialist, and a representative from Benin, who will share a recently launched Standard Operating Procedure for the Issuance of Early Warnings.

Highlighted Speaker – Arnaud Zannou: In Benin, 800,000 people now have access to early weather warnings thanks to the establishment of a Standard Operating Procedure. The country issued early warnings for flooding through a multi-agency committee in 2014 and 2015, using manual monitoring of river levels, data processing and information analysis. The country has also adopted a standard operating procedure for the diffusion of alerts through the National Disaster Management Agency. 


Last Mile Product Building Blocks: Weather and Climate Data, Information and Content
Our beloved Professor in Residence John Snow chairs this session that covers data sets and smart application of weather and climate information.

Highlighted Speaker – Chris Mannaerts: Chris Mannaerts holds academic qualifications in the fields of agricultural chemistry, environmental sanitation engineering and physical hydrology. He has 30 years (1980-2010) of working experience in the fields of watershed hydrology, soil management and water pollution control, including application of Remote Sensing and GIS technologies in land and water management.

Last Mile Application Development and Distribution Panel
Chaired by CIRDA’s technology guru, Jeremy Usher, this section brings you closer to technology platforms, innovative partnerships and other Last Mile weather and climate services.

Highlighted Speaker – David McAfee: David McAfee is the President, CEO and Co-Founder of HNI. He has over 20 years of development experience and a proven record of social entrepreneurship. He was a Peace Corps volunteer in Gabon from 1991-1994. He joined Population Services International (PSI), the world’s largest social marketing organization in 1996 and held various positions including Country Representative in Rwanda and Madagascar and Regional Director for Southern Africa. In 2008, he left PSI to promote the use of technology in development as the leader of HNI. David has a B.A. in Economics from the University of Chicago.


The Commercial Market Opportunity for Weather and Climate Services in Africa, a Market Study Report
Get closer to your targets with a deep dive into commercial market opportunities in this session chaired by Alan Miller.  

Highlighted Speaker – Anthony Mills: Anthony is the CEO of C4 EcoSolutions – a company of 15 climate change consultants that develop innovative, evidence-based solutions for adapting to climate change. C4 operates in more than forty countries across Asia and Africa. The company’s clients include the International Finance Corporation (IFC), UNEP, IFAD, FAO, CarbonPlus Capital and UNDP.  C4’s work includes designing and implementing adaptation projects and investments in both the public and private sectors. Anthony is also Extraordinary Professor in the Department of Soil Science, University of Stellenbosch.  


Building the Last Mile with Public Private Partnerships
Take a closer look at some successful Last Mile efforts spreading roots across Africa in this session chaired by Pradeep Kurukulasuriya, UNDP Senior Technical Advisor. This session dives deeper into establishing trust and leveraging networks, infrastructure and services to take weather and climate services past the Last Mile. chairs this

Highlighted Speaker – Beniah Nyakanda: Beniah Nyakanda works for Econet Wireless Zimbabwe under EcoFarmer as an Agricultural Specialist. Beniah has worked in the Agricultural Advisory and Development Sector over the last 18 years and is passionate about bringing solutions which can bring about development of the smallholder and commercial sector.


Lessons Learned from Last Mile Efforts Throughout Africa
The learning continues with samples of working Last Mile efforts, information on creating virtuous cycles of trust and establishing networks, relationships and services to connect with end users.

Highlighted Speaker – Vani Holla: Vani heads up the team that identifies and supports Esoko resellers and clients. Prior to Esoko, Vani was with HP, where she first worked as the Head of Instruction Design & Knowledge Management, leading the SAP implementation, before joining the Decision Support and Analytics wing to manage research projects. Vani has a Masters in Business Administration from Indian Institute of Management in Calcutta.


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