Capacity Building Core (CBC)

D-SINE Africa’s Capacity Building Core (CBC) addresses recognized barriers to the development and success of investigators in Sub-Sharan Africa (SSA), catalyzing the conduct of high-quality, applied data science research to improve the health of communities in Africa, including addressing the pervasive problem of injury.

The CBC leverage the strengths of our institutions, years of experience mentoring students and junior researchers, existing training tools and programs, and access to large datasets to ensure that D-SINE Africa benefits from an administrative and scientific environment to successfully achieve the Center’s goals, seamlessly integrating with DS-I Africa, and fostering the next generation of African researchers leveraging data science methodology to benefit the health and well-being of their communities.

This will be achieved through CBC activities including:

i. Curation of a data science “methods toolkit”, leveraging existing and new resources from D-SINE partner institutions and the broader DS-I Africa initiative

ii. Structured, multi-year mentorship opportunities for D-SINE Fellows assigned to each of the two Research Projects.

iii. Implementation of a pilot research program awarding Seed Grants [link] annually to junior researchers to conduct pilot projects related to D-SINE’s core themes and leverage data generated through D-SINE or DS-I Africa collaborations

Leadership: The Capacity Building Core is co-led by Mama Foupouagnigni, PhD, Chief Academic Officer of the AIMS Global Network and President of AIMS Cameroon and Sandra McCoy, PhD, MPH, Associate Professor in Residence in the Division of Epidemiology and Biostatistics, University of California, Berkeley. The CBC also benefits from additional core faculty who have decades of experience mentoring scholars in low- and middle-income countries.

Methods Toolkit

D-SINE Africa’s Capacity Building Core (CBC) is responsible for the Curation of a data science “methods toolkit” by leveraging existing and new resources from D-SINE partner institutions as well as future resources developed in the broader DS-I Africa initiative. The “methods toolkit” is available to D-SINE Fellows and Seed Grant recipients. Resources in the “toolkit” include:

  • Curricula for AIMS African Master’s in Machine Intelligence
  • Curricula for AIMS-Cameroon Master’s program in Mathematical Sciences
  • UC Berkeley’s Foundations of Data Science Certificate via EdX, a 3-course series appropriate for those without a strong quantitative background.
  • UC Berkeley Extension Certificate in Data Science, a 4+ course series with programming prerequisites; suitable for trainees in D-SINE with strong quantitative backgrounds
  • UC Berkeley open access course, “Data 8: Foundations of Data Science.”
  • UC Berkeley course in Data Science via Berkeley ExecEd, a course for mid-level to senior managers from private or public sectors seeking a rigorous, hands-on experience.
  • UC Berkeley Online course, “PHW290: R for Public Health,” intended for beginners.
  • Foundational statistical coursework through Berkeley’s Online MPH program, including “PH142: Introduction to Probability and Statistics” and “PH241: Analysis of Categorical Data.”
  • UCLA online course “Writing for Peer Review and Publication,” facilitated by JAMA Deputy Editor Livingston, who will also provide critical reviews of trainee manuscripts.
  • Pre-recorded lectures on theory and application of targeted learning by UC Berkeley faculty
  • Monthly journal club hosted by the University of Buea featuring a rotating series of topics centered on D-SINE Africa’s core themes

The Training Coordinator, Daniel Tcheutia, PhD from AIMS Cameroon, facilitates training workshops to match trainees with learning opportunities, and to conduct post-training follow-up.