November 2019 is going to be an important month for the DT4A community and those harnessing Free Software, Open Data and the OpenStreetMap (OSM) and transit data in Africa.
Between 22-24 November, the heart of the OpenStreetMap (OSM) community in Africa will beat in Grand-Bassam, Ivory Coast at the 2019 African State of the Map (SotM) conference. Over 300 individuals are convening, from across the world and the entire spectrum of the OSM ecosystem: data enthusiasts, civil society, mapping collectives, business, universities, government, NGO and International Organizations. By sharing their experiences they will build stories and demonstrate the many practices that make OSM a reality in Africa. The sessions aim to promote more OSM projects in 2020 across Africa.
For SotM to be fruitful, it is important to gather experienced practitioners, thorough case studies and, of course, provide basic amenities for the event. AFD is therefore supporting DT4A practitioners and SotM by sponsoring the conference as a platinum sponsor (10,000 USD). Les Libres Géographes (LLG) will also be organizing an all-day session on OpenStreetMap for Transport (O4T). LLG and AFD will bring in key actors, their knowledge and their experiences. Together with other sponsors, partners and mappers, AFD is making an important contribution to the success of the conference and in turn increasing the impact of OSM actions in 2020.
O4T will occur Saturday, 23 November around three main sessions. It will open with AFD’s approach to OSM and data as a common good via DT4A and the tools it brings to the community of practitioners. The first session will review current and past experiences of OpenStreetMap-based transit mapping and management in Africa. Attendees will learn how AFD and Ivory Coast’s Ministry of Transport, supported by the Jungle Bus and OSM Côte d’Ivoire, are currently mapping public transportation in Abidjan as well as parallel efforts in Bamako spearheaded by World Bank and OSM mappers from Mali. AFD and World Bank and will also share past mapping experiences in Accra and Freetown. The session will also give the opportunity to various OSM community members to share their experiences with non-funded, grassroot transit mapping in the cities of Ouagadougou, Antananarivo, Dakar and Conakry.
A second session will tackle all the governance issues raised by OSM usage. Drawing on past experiences, we will discuss practical ways governmental and private-sector stakeholders can engage the OSM ecosystem to best catalyze O4T programs. We frame this engagement within the principles, policies and practices of the OSM Foundation (OSMF). OSMF’s recommendations on good practices may help O4T actors efficiently use OSM without harming both the project and local communities.
A third session in the afternoon will present tools for creating, managing and visualizing O4T data. We demo OSM data collection tools freshly built by Jungle Bus and used by Ivorian mappers for the Abidjan Transport mapping project. The session will also review the OSM editing tool to organize and maintain transport data in the OSM database. We highlight a tool for converting OSM data into GTFS, the industry standard transit data format used for information management, as well as select transit maps. Overall this session will help the attendees get a clear idea of what is technically required to replicate O4T mapping projects elsewhere.
Join us at O4T for the 2019 SotM Africa conference and beyond!