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Open Access Data: Enabling Household Energy Data: Infrastructures for Policy and Planning

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This proposal plans to strengthen data expertise and research partnerships between South Africa and the UK though the formation of a new network aimed at investigating access to and use of household energy data for policy-making and planning. The work planned focuses on data infrastructure and brings together data professionals, energy researchers and policy makers in SA and the UK. It includes both knowledge exchange events and limited capacity building that help us to understand better data needs for answering key research and policy questions, and optimal methods and protocols for governance, storage of and access to these data.

The project's aims are a good fit with the mission of the ODA to deliver outcomes that promote the long-term sustainable growth of South Africa as an emerging knowledge economy. Substantive cases from South Africa highlights some of the challenges faced both by the shortage of data needed to provide evidence for evaluation and impact monitoring of e.g. consumption, fuel poverty and demand reduction, but also the lack of systems and tools to extract and present intelligence from data.

Teams will work across the network to address key policy challenges through shared scoping, planning and analysis of UK and SA household energy data. This proposal connects centres of expertise to further progress in areas where there is less capacity than is needed for progressing the next generation of data infrastructures, and in turn, foster new research agendas. Because the centres involved are recognised as key players in their various existing roles, the fusion of their activities will enhance international pathways to impact.

The project will contribute to the development of an internationally networked cohort of experts charged with brokering of and access to data new and novel forms of data who have the skills to work globally. To meet this final aim, the project will co-design and implement a joint UK-SA workshop programme focused on data management and sharing in the social sciences, aimed at researchers, that contributes to the global data science educational programme being developed under the wing of the Research Data Alliance (RDA). The theme of household energy data will provide an excellent exemplar for the training.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: November 1, 2017

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