From Kampala – Uganda oil wiki launch in 3…2…1…

We’re excited to be launching our latest oil wiki, the Uganda Oil Almanac, today at the Hotel Africana in Kampala, Uganda. Starting now, the first open source reference for the Ugandan oil industry will be housed on the website of the Uganda Radio Network (URN), at oil.ugandaradionetwork.com.

URN have taken ownership of the wiki and their journalists will be updating it regularly to keep pace with the latest developments in Uganda’s nascent industry. As such, the wiki is positioned to fulfill its role as a critical resource for journalists, civil society activists, government officials, and anyone else wanting to gain an objective and detailed look at the industry that will help shape Uganda’s future.

As a wiki, of course, the Almanac is never finished – what’s there now is the ‘seed’, so to speak, which will continue to expand and grow ever more comprehensive in the coming weeks and months.

For me, today’s launch represents the culmination of the past few weeks I’ve been in Uganda, helping build the wiki and write the articles that form its foundation (with invaluable support from OpenOil HQ in Berlin!), training six URN journalists in the fine arts of wiki writing, editing, and digital curation, and starting to spread the word about the new wiki to the vibrant civil society and media sector here in Kampala.

We’re hosting this event alongside our friends at Oil in Uganda, who made a launch at the venerable Hotel Africana possible. We’ll demonstrate the wiki in action and get the feedback of journalists from the country’s biggest newspapers, like The Monitor, and of leaders of Uganda’s religious community, civil society and government officials who are in attendance. They all have an interest in the responsible management of Uganda’s petroleum reserves and, by extension, the socio-economic welfare of all 34 million Ugandans. And they also have a stake in the well-informed debate about oil issues the Uganda Oil Almanac will help foster.

Today we’ll also get into a discussion about how to begin to extend the conversation about oil issues in Uganda beyond the elites, beyond the secretive chambers of decision-makers in government, and beyond the exclusive international private-sector.

The inaccessibility of information that reigns in so many oil producing countries – and in Uganda, even before it starts producing – is beginning to be chipped away. There are ways to make the industry’s benefits work for all, and Uganda’s oil wiki is a step in that direction.

Category: Africa, Blogs, OpenOil blogs, Uganda, Wiki · Tags:

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