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Joseph Kibombo Balikuddembe

By John Churu, Gaborone, Botswana

The 2012 African Conference on Software Engineering and Applied Computing (ACSEAC) has kicked off in the Botswana capital, Gaborone. The conference which is in its second series focuses primarily on Software Engineering and Applied Computing. The theme for this year’s conference is “Innovative approaches to Enhancing Business Growth and Efficiency.” The conference runs from the 24th to the 25th of September 2012.

The conference, says it organisers: “Is to bring together both African and international researchers in the field of ICT to share ideas, problems and solutions in Software Engineering and Applied Computing, and specifically with regard to the use of new and emerging technologies to address socio-economic challenges. Thus, creating an opportunity both for academics and practitioners from industry to discuss recent progress in this area.”

Speaking to on the sidelines of the conference, one of the conference organisers Dr. Joseph Kibombo Balikuddembe from Uganda, said the conference aims at “Building reliable systems which are relevant for the transformation of the African continent. We look at innovations that will help prepare economic growth on the continent of Africa.”

Balikuddembe added: “As we build human capital development we must be cognisant of the fact that the principles and practices match up to standard with the rest of the world, and also that any research investigations aligned to these innovations must be aligned and shared.”

He lamented the fact that although they are a force to reckon with within the ICT fraternity, African governments and decision makers seems to sideline their input as stakeholders. “We are trying to reach out to governments but in vain. It would be important if we all read from the same script with these governments of Africa. We know that we can add to the strategic vision which is tailored to the African needs.

He added that there was a lack of contact with government as in identifying who can bring them on board of these e-governance strategies that are being adopted by African states today so that they can see how to complement each other. On the other hand Balikuddembe observed that as a software community, they have not been organised, adding “if we come together as an organised group we push a common voice. By coming together, we come up with a common policy.”

 During the two days, there will be numerous presentations and discussions about modeling techniques for complex systems in diverse areas of science, scalable scientific algorithms, advanced software tools, advanced numerical methods, and novel areas of application. Similarly, there will also be demonstrations where these new models, algorithms and tools are applied in areas as diverse as finance, environmental systems, physical systems, computational and systems biology, among others,” says the conference information.

The Conference highlights are as follows

•ACSEAC2012 is in technical co-sponsorship with IEEE Computer Society Technical Committee on Scalable Computing.

•ACSEAC2012 is in technical co-sponsorship with the IEEE

•This conference is expecting to draw over 200 international participants, including: Industrial and academic researchers, managers, architects, engineers and consultants in the IT industry, vendors and users of software tools, professors and students.

•Workshops on emerging topics will be an integral part of this conference.

•Tutorials by leading experts in their fields will be given.

•There will be a Best Paper Award and also a Best Student Paper Award.

Some of the countries taking part today and tomorrow include; Botswana, Cameroun, Ethiopia, Kenya, Uganda, China, Saudi Arabia, Canada, Switzerland, Poland, Nigeria and South Africa.

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