An online workshop for open publishing of public health in Africa




There is a need for local research in Africa to help provide an evidence base for policy development, but the researchers lack the opportunity to publish their findings in local journals with results readily available to other researchers or policymakers. Greater academic credit is currently given to researchers who publish in high-impact international than local journals. Most international journals either have high article processing charges or their contents are hidden behind paywalls. 

Many African countries have no health journals or only one. A survey by PublicHealth.Africa found journals not indexed in scholarly search engines, and one-half of the journals levied full Article Processing Charges to be paid by the author or their institution. A subsequent survey of African teachers, researchers, editors and publishers found their experience of open-access publishing limited, as was their knowledge of its advantages and disadvantages. 

Two-thirds of the respondents expressed a desire to join a mentoring programme and to have access to online courses relevant to their interests. Based on this experience, this workshop is designed to explore how to develop an ecosystem for the open publishing of African research in public health.

Target Audience: Librarians (including medical librarians), early career public health researchers,  respondents to previous PHA surveys and participants in the peer review course, and other interested and relevant parties.

Expected Outputs:

Action plans from four breakout groups


    • 9:00 AM 9:05 AM
      Introductions and agenda setting 5m
      Speaker: Dr Ian Ruredzo (PHA (University of Zimbabwe))
    • 9:05 AM 9:15 AM
      Open publishing in Africa now and the future 10m
      Speaker: Omo Oaiya (WACREN)
    • 9:15 AM 9:30 AM
      Results of two research projects by (PHA) 15m
      Speaker: Dr Dominic Agyei Dankwah (University of Health and Allied Sciences)
    • 9:30 AM 9:40 AM
      Experience with an online course on peer review and open publishing 10m
      Speaker: Prof. Richard Heller (Peoples-Praxis)
    • 9:40 AM 9:50 AM
      Helping young professionals to thrive 10m
      Speaker: Dr Francis Ohanyido (West African Institute of Public Health (WAIPH))
    • 9:50 AM 10:30 AM
      Breakout Session
      Conveners: Dr Dominic Agyei Dankwah (University of Health and Allied Sciences), Prof. Elsie Kiguli-Malwadde (AFREhealth | ACHEST), Dr Modibo SANGARE (MRTC/FMOS/USTTB), Omo Oaiya (WACREN)
      • 9:50 AM
        Capacity building required and how to develop this 40m
      • 9:50 AM
        New publishing and reviewing options 40m
      • 9:50 AM
        Research agenda to be pursued in the area 40m
      • 9:50 AM
        Supporting environment that is required 40m
    • 10:30 AM 10:55 AM
      Report Back and brainstorming on Open publishing in Africa 25m
    • 10:55 AM 11:00 AM
      Closing: Next steps with Open publishing of public health in Africa 5m