The Meraka Institute of CSIR, South Africa, with the support from the Dar-es-Salaam Institute of Technology, has organized a EuroAfrica-ICT awareness workshop which will be held in at Peacock Hotel, Dar-es-Salaam, Tanzania on April 16 & 17, 2008.

This is one of the awareness workshops which the START/EuroAfrica-ICT initiative has been holding in different parts of the continent since last year. These workshops are aimed at supporting the involvement of sub-Saharan African organizations in the European Union’s Seventh Framework Programme (FP7) for Research and Technological Development under the ICT theme.The EU has set aside a sum of 9.1 Billion Euros for the funding of this programme.

It is very important for countries in this region (Malawi, Kenya, Uganda, Rwanda, Burundi,Mozambique, Zambia, Democratic Republic of Congo) to send their participants to the Dar-es-Salaam workshop. Participation is free but pre-registration is compulsory.If you are interested, you can register online. Travel and subsistence expenses are the responsibility of the participants. My advice to people in authority is that you must send participants who are ICT savvy because they will be expected to contribute to the proceedings and map out the ICT future of our region. I am saying this because some senior people love to push themselves into workshops and conferences, about which they know nothing. They do all that simply because they want to fly, have a good time in a foreign hotel and get the allowances (which are also hefty because of their seniority) without making any contribution (whether meaningful or meaningless) to the proceedings. They would spend the whole day at the beach while the workshop is in session because they cannot comprehend the proceedings. This is one of the reasons why Africa fails to progress. Too bad!