Programme Committee


Julius Atlhopheng - Dean of Science, University of Botswana

Hilary Hanahoe – Secretary General, Research Data Alliance

Hilary Hanahoe is a director at Trust-IT Services, a dynamic SME which communicates ICT to markets with an international breadth where she focuses on international services & strategies execution and business development. Hilary has been communicating innovation, marketing & digital strategies in Information and Communication Technologies since 1996. She has a deep commitment in building programmes that forge strong bonds and higher levels of involvement with organisations, decision-makers, influencers in the creation of ICT opportunities for Europeans worldwide. She served as Coordinator of the GRDI2020 initiative which produced a 10 year visionary roadmap on Global Research Data Infrastructures and successfully created a globally connected community of research data stakeholders. Hilary is the current coordinator of the Research Data Alliance (RDA) Europe initiative & a member of the RDA global secretariat where she brings her communications expertise to the table and is responsible for communications and RDA plenary meetings.

Simon Hodson - Executive Director, ICSU - CODATA

Simon Hodson has been Executive Director of CODATA since August 2013.  Simon is an expert on data policy issues and research data management. He has contributed to influential reports on Current Best Practice for Research Data Management Policies and to the Science International Accord on Open Data in a BigData World. As part of his CODATA role, Simon leads or participants in numerous projects, Working Groups and Steering Groups.  Most recently he has served as Chair of the European Commission’s Expert Group on FAIR Data; co-chair of the OECD Global Science Forum Report on Business Models for Sustainable Digital Repositories; as well as directing the African Open Science Platform Project.


Audrey Masizana - Head of Department of Computer Science, University of Botswana

Yolanda Meleco – Project Director, RDA-US, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute

Yolanda Meleco provides overall project direction of the RDA-US organization, budget and financial administration for RDA-US grants, information systems development and management, and the development and execution of an RDA-US communications plan. She also serves as liaison for RDA-US to the global RDA organization as a member of the Secretariat, where she provides oversight of global communications and RDA Plenaries. Her career prior to RDA has focused on the management and implementation of initiatives and projects at global, national, state and departmental levels working in management-level positions in the pharmaceutical, research, healthcare and finance sectors


Rorie Edmunds - Programme Officer, ICSU-WDS

Rorie Edmunds joined the World Data System International Programme Office in August 2012. He previously worked as a Technical Editor in Tokyo, aiding Japanese scientists and academics from many scientific disciplines to publish their work in English. Before this, he held various research positions in universities in both his home country of the UK (including Imperial College London) and in Japan (principally, the Toyota Technological Institute). Having been involved in a number of academic projects, his scientific background has covered fields including nonlinear mathematics, structural mechanics, geology, design engineering, and optimization. In particular, he modelled several types of structural failure in multilayer materials by incorporating nonlinear friction at the layer interfaces. His first degree is in mathematics and he holds a Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering, both of which were gained from the University of Bath (UK).

Patrick Molutsi - Country Managing Partner and Principal Researcher, Joint Minds Consult, Botswana

Tshiamo Motshegwa – HPC Project Coordinator, University of Botswana

Dr Tshiamo Motshegwa is based at the Department of Computer Science, Faculty of Science at the University of Botswana. He leads the High Performance Computing and Data Science Research cluster, and has been Chair of the SADC Technical Experts Working Group developing the SADC Regional Cyber-infrastructure Framework. He serves on the Botswana Government’s Ministry of Tertiary Education, Science and Technology task team for the Botswana Space Science strategy overarching developments and opportunities in space sciences and technologies. He is also a member of the Botswana SKA & African Very Long Base Interferometer Network (AVN) Projects technical Committee, and the Botswana Open Data Open Science (ODOS) committee. Dr Motshegwa also participates in the SADC Intellectual Property Rights initiative, and has engaged in Southern African Innovation Support Programme (SAIS) projects around innovation ecosystems and Technology Transfer. Dr Motshegwa received a BEng (Hons) in Computer Engineering and a Ph.D. in Computer Science- Multiagent Systems and Distributed Systems from City, University Of London. He has had fellowships at British Energy Plc, at British Telecom's Adastral Park Research & Innovation Labs, BTexact Technologies in Ipswitch, UK and at the Intelligent Business Systems Group.

Kay Raseroka - Managing Partner, Joint Minds Consult, Botswana

Ina Smith – Project Manager: African Open Science Platform, Academy of Science of South Africa (ASSAf)

Ina Smith’s research focus is on promoting digital skills, open access, open science and open data publishing in the global South, with specific emphasis on Africa. She holds a Masters’ Degree from the University of Pretoria in Computer-Integrated Education, a Higher Education Teaching Diploma, and an Honours Degree in Library and Information Science. She has vast experience working in open access during her employment at the Univ. of Pretoria and Stellenbosch University – in repositories, journal publishing and conference publishing, and vast experience in developing training material in digital skills, as well as presenting training as part of continued professional development. She is currently employed as a project manager at the Academy of Science of SA, where she is managing the African Open Science Platform project. She is also a DOAJ Ambassador for the southern Africa region. In 2014 she received the LIASA President’s Acknowledgement for Exceptional Contribution (2014), in 2011 she was a Runner-up in the international EPT Award for Open Access, and in 2016 she was awarded LIASA Librarian of the Year. Ina served on the LIASA Executive Committee during 2014 to 2016, and during the same time she also served as Chair of the LIASA Higher Educational Library Interest Group (HELIG). She has a keen interest in the research process in general, and are actively promoting all to become digital citizens and to remain lifelong researchers and self-learners. Her involvement in digital citizenship and open research/science takes her all over the world, and she frequently presents papers at conferences.