In 2014, the bi-annual conference was held for the first time on the African continent in Windhoek, in partnership with the Ministry of Sport, Youth and National Service, Southern African Innovation Support Programme (SAIS), National Commission on Science and Research Technology (NCRST), Green Enterprise Solutions and many others. In turn, it inspired Namibian researchers to contribute to the 2016 conference in Aarhus, Denmark. “Our work has been well received by the international community as demonstrated by the acceptance of all five submissions by the Namibian team among 30 other participating countries,” said Prof Heike Winschiers-Theophilus, who supervises the PhD candidates and Master students on the project.
Helvi Wheeler, a young emerging researcher from TLU, presented a paper on co-designing technologies to enhance reading experiences with indigenous children, while Daniel Cabrero shared his recent research studies on user created personas with Namibian communities.
Colin Stanley, Gereon Kapuire, Donovan Maasz and Michael Chamunorwa from FCI demonstrated at an exhibition under the theme: “Formulating the Obvious as a Task Request to the Crowd: An Interactive Design Experience Across Cultural and Geographical Boundaries.” The installation showcased the technologies that were co-designed with Namibian rural communities with the aim of preserving Indigenous Knowledge.
Kapuire said the NUST exhibition attracted a lot of interest during the showcasing and many visitors were impressed with what has been achieved in Namibia through research and community engagement.
Members of the delegation had the opportunity to network, expand collaborations and had fruitful discussions around the specific usage of technologies and design challenges.