Makerere University Data Science Research Training to Strengthen Evidence-Based Health Innovation, Intervention and Policy (MakDARTA)
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- Checkley, William
- Joloba, Moses Lutaakome
Harnessing Data Science for Health Discovery and Innovation in Africa (DS- I Africa) Research Training Program Fogarty International Research training award. The proposed grant’s goal is to leverage on the existing partnership between Makerere University and Johns Hopkins University to build a joint comprehensive Data Science Research Training program to Strengthen Evidence-Based Health Innovation, Intervention and Policy in Uganda. Cognizant of the fact that, the use of data science analytics in medicine is already generating new knowledge that is advancing prediction, performance and discovery in health, the training program aims to; (1) Establish graduate degree training (Master’s and PhD) in data science for graduating health-professionals at MakCHS, (2) Provide Postdoctoral training that will enable Ugandan H3Africa alumni to transition into faculty and/or independent data science research leaders and, (3) Train MakCHS faculty to enhance their capabilities for data science research and mentorship of data science trainees. The program will comprise of higher degree (Master’s and PhD) and non-degree (Faculty and Post- doctoral) training with tailored coursework and mentored research training to equip trainees with the requisite skillset for successful careers in data science. For degree training, our strategy will be to take advantage of the existing infrastructure and trainings and gradually introduce data science training by selecting trainees from existing data science relevant Master’s and Doctoral programs; at the same time, we will expand the proposed Master’s and Doctoral data science curriculum in accordance with Makerere University guidelines, foster collaborations with other DS-I Africa Training Program PIs with focus on curriculum harmonization and mapping of the same on core competencies, and seek national, regional and international accreditation/endorsement. With significant investment in key infrastructure and training at Makerere over the last 10 years, we believe that sustainable research and training in data science for health is feasible and could be transformative for Uganda’s health research and care. At the end of the grant period, measurable parameters of increased research capacity we expect as a result of the training activities shall include (among others); significant new knowledge generated (as judged from the number of data science for health scientific publications, policy briefs, etc.), DS-I health innovations generated by trainees, interdisciplinary DS-I research teams at Makerere.
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