WanaData Africa
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WanaData Africa

WanaData June Meetups: Highlights

WanaData aims to turbo-boost networks of African women, contributing to their socio-economic empowerment by liberating gender data, amplifying their voices through data journalism, fast-tracking careers, and deepening expertise in tech, data science, and journalism.

The network is active in seven countries (Cameroon, Kenya, Nigeria, Senegal, South Africa, Tanzania, and Uganda). In each country, we organise monthly meetups to share skills, and experiences, brainstorm on projects or campaigns and kickstart collaborations.

Below are highlights from WanaData June meetups:

WanaData Tanzania: Becoming an Influencer - What you Need to Know

The Tanzania 🇹🇿 WanaData meetup held on June 7 focused on influencer marketing. The session was led by Viola Julius, a social media influencer who shared insights to guide members aspiring to be influencers.

Viola defined an influencer as an individual with a large and loyal social media reputation for their knowledge and expertise in a specific topic. She identified the following types of influencers:

Mega-influencers: These individuals have over 100,000 followers and mostly entail celebrities. Due to the nature of their following, they are likely to attract leading brands.

Micro-influencers: A micro-influencer is a social media user with 1,000 to 100,000 followers. While their following may be small, their authenticity is rated high and will likely provide greater and more genuine engagements that cultivate their relationship with the audience.

Nano-influencers: This is an individual with less than 1,000 followers and has an immense influence on a niche subject. Brands can create a significant impact by deploying nano-influencers, as their audience is more likely to trust what they are promoting.

Viola mentioned that in Tanzania, many influencers are on Tiktok, Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook.

The participants were also keen to understand how they could financially benefit by being influencers. She advised that the focus should be on producing high-quality content to attract readership and advertisers.

WanaData South Africa: Mapping for Journalists: Essential Tools in 2022

WanaData South Africa 🇿🇦 meetup tackled mapping tools for journalists. The June 23 session facilitated by Alastair Otter, the co-founder of Media Hack, delved into different mapping tools, their functionalities, and the technical know-how needed to use them effectively.

The speaker noted that maps are a great way to add context and visualise data with geographic components. He acknowledged that with more tools available to create maps, it becomes difficult to choose the right option for your work and expertise.

The session explored tools such as Mapshaper, Mapbox, QGIS, Leaflet.js, My Maps, BatchGeo and Ogre. Attendees were notified that operating certain tools requires some level of programming experience. Participants were also taken through several map formats, such as Shapefile, GeoJSON, TopoJSON, and SVG.

Participants also learned the different open-source mapping tools available for journalists, how to use them, their map formats, and their level of expertise. Otter also shared resources to help members learn more about mapping tools.

WanaData Nigeria: The Art of Data Interpretation

The Nigeria 🇳🇬 WanaData meet-up was held on 24 June, focusing on interpreting data. With the vast amount of data available online and offline, gathering, analysing, and interpreting data is crucial for making actionable and informed decisions.

For the session, we invited Countess Aforijiku, a Senior Data Scientist at Entuitive. She shared her expertise in data interpretation, common challenges, and what to look out for.

The speaker also emphasised the importance of correctly interpreting data to reduce bias and arrive at accurate conclusions. She also addressed questions about dealing with missing values in data, what instances to use the mean, median, and mode for analyses alongside how to determine if you have gathered enough data for your work.

Participants also learned how to interpret qualitative and quantitative data and visualise data through pie charts, line charts or bar charts, among others.

WanaData Cameroon: The Do’s and Don’t of Contributing to Wikipedia

WanaData Cameroon 🇨🇲meetup conducted on June 24 focused on Wikipedia, the world’s largest reference compendium. Notably, despite Wikipedia’s growth, Africa is poorly represented on the platform, with limited spaces where Africans can directly write and edit the content on their continent.

The information imbalance needs to be addressed through increased contribution by Africans. We, therefore, invited Alexandra Tchuileu, a blogger, Wikipedia contributor, and journalist with Cameroon Tribune, who shared insights on the dos and don’ts of contributing to Wikipedia.

Alexandra gave an overview of Wikipedia, its relevance, and the need to contribute to it and make information available and relevant to Africans and the world. Members were taken through a live demonstration on how to contribute to Wikipedia.

Notably, Code for Africa plans to launch a WIR (Wikipedia In Residence) community to provide and improve content about Africa on Wikipedia.

WanaData Senegal: Personal Finance Management and Income Supplementation Opportunities

Wanadata Senegal 🇸🇳 June meetup guided participants on finance management under the topic “Personal finance management and income supplementation opportunities”. The members were enlightened on utilising data and addressing common financial concerns. The session held on June 28 aimed to offer financial advice to community members to manage their revenues and identify diverse income sources to help them attain financial independence.

markets. Ka explained the importance of investing a section of personal income instead of just saving. He also shared tips such as guides for stock market investment.

The session attracted 17 participants composed of data scientists, journalists, and health workers interested in learning about financial tips.

WanaData Uganda: Creating Visualisations in Datawrapper

WanaData Uganda 🇺🇬 June meetup explored data visualisations through Datawrapper and was facilitated by Code for Africa’s data analysts Freda Victor. Notably, visualisations are a great way to tell stories by curating data into a form easier to understand, highlighting the trends and outliers.

Freda talked about visualisations and how to create charts and maps in Datawrapper and shared tips on using the tool to create interactive visuals.

During the June 29 session, she explained why Datawrapper is a good tool for data journalists and storytellers based on elements such as user-friendliness and the ability to create interactive and responsive visuals.

Freda also explained how to use a chart or map type based on your data and develop different maps and chart options in Datawrapper.

The practical session included a step-by-step demonstration of how to upload data, customise charts and maps, publish, download, and embed visualisations in Datawrapper.

Participants in the interactive session also requested a follow-up session on other tools like GIS for Maps.

Interested in WanaData?

  • Join other women in media and tech spaces and learn of fellowships, mentorship and training opportunities within WanaData.
  • Follow WanaData on Medium and Code for Africa on Twitter to get updates on WanaData events.
  • Register for the upcoming WanaData July Talks event: English | French

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