Making use of DIGI-FACE: Discovering, Using and Improving the DIGI-FACE platform together

In order to support the Centres of the African Excellence Programme’s in the autonomous and decentralised operation of the jointly developed DIGI-FACE platform, a 1.5-day DIGI-FACE training course was held after this year’s DAAD African Excellence Programme network meeting, in which 26 representatives and staff members from DAAD Centres participated actively and full of motivation. The training was intended for all interested Centre Coordinators already in Accra during the DAAD network meeting. Diverse participants from different universities came together and shared their experiences in managing the DIGI-FACE platform in their Centre.

The official group photo of the training participants during the DIGI-FACE training at the Fiesta Royal Hotel in Accra (Source: University of Kehl, 29.09.2023)

The training was conducted by the DIGI-FACE Coordination Team led by Prof. Dr. Ewald Eisenberg and Prof. Dr. Paul Webb. In addition to DIGI-FACE facilitators on-site, much expert knowledge from the librarian, IT developers, and web design was included in the training via video calls. Prof. Dr. Ewald Eisenberg started with a little introduction and highlited the relevance of this training session before Ms. Elisa Adams explained again the different roles in the operation of the DIGI-FACE platform. DIGI-FACE is a complex project with many stakeholders and the multifunctional DIGI-FACE platform consists of different functions based on different systems. In order to keep in touch and establish meaningful connections, the DIGI-FACE Coordination Team really need to know who works at your Centre in which position. In Ms. Elisa Adams‘ session, participants were given an overview of how they can see their own roles and rights and how their Centre of Excellence currently manages DIGI-FACE. In addition Dr. Eldridge van der Westhuizen presented new technical modifications to the platform. For example, the new registration process and the new conference tool to support the booking office of academic events.

Through many practical demonstrations, the participants worked directly in the platform and learned to understand the DIGI-FACE content management system based on WordPress and the new modifications

Achieved Main Goal: Enablement and empowerment of Centre Coordinators at the participating universities of the African Excellence Programme (in their role as multipliers) to maintain, administer and make use of the DIGI-FACE Platform.

The experienced DIGI-FACE Facilitator Mr. Michael Kongo (CCAM) illustrates in a live demo the upload possibilities of scientific publications on DIGI-FACE (Source: University of Kehl, 29.09.2023)

On Friday, Prof. Dr. Paul Webb presented the possibility of use and scenarios. Ms. Maretha Allwright (DIGI-FACE Librarian Expert) took the participants through the completed DIGI-FACE publication tool, demonstrated its use, and took the participants into the current challenges of the open science community and the standards needed to expand research at the Centres of Excellence. Exciting initiatives such as Sherpa Romeo and Research4Development were presented. There will be more courses on this shortly. The day also showed how DIGI-FACE as a platform can increase the visibility and reach of the Centres of Excellence, but also for individual researchers, teachers, alums and students. In a joint reflection round, the Centres collected follow-ups and developed ideas on their own team and role structures in which their Centre should use the DIGI-FACE platform and what is required for this. Recommendations for future DIGI-FACE services were also developed.

The course materials of the Training are stored in an created Moodle course for this Centre Admin Training. All participants of the training can access them. If other interested staff members from your Centre of African Excellence are interested in these documents, please feel free to contact us ( and we will enrol you!

For those involved, including the DIGI-FACE team, it was a full programme! But it was a unique opportunity to expand the use of the DIGI-FACE platform in your Centre further for your visibility in the world wide web and daily management of your activities. Our DIGI-FACE team would like to continue providing close support in the future so that you can use all services effectively for your daily work in your university.

Personally, it was a lot of fun working with you. Our DIGI-FACE team enjoyed it – we all learned a lot! 🙂 Let’s make even more use of our DIGI-FACE platform together.

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