Redlands, California—Smart mapping leader Esri announced an agreement between Esri Eastern Africa Limited and the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia to install free Esri geospatial software at more than 30 Ethiopian public universities.
Under the terms of the agreement, the universities will enjoy high-speed fiber-optic Internet access to Esri’s award-winning geospatial platform ArcGIS, including mobile and web applications, online training courses, global datasets, and teaching resources.
The implementation will be overseen by the Ethiopian Education and Research Network (EthERNet) with the assistance of Addis Ababa University and Esri partner PanAfrica Geoinformation Services. EthERNet will serve as a central hub for providing support and training to all universities. In future phases, all major Ethiopian public universities will be connected to EthERNet.
"This advanced university GIS hub will allow Ethiopia to leapfrog other African nations in terms of access to the latest GIS technology," said Jack Dangermond, Esri founder and president. "Moving from purely desktop GIS functionality to distributed Web GIS will help Ethiopia facilitate faster collaboration among researchers and learners across the country."
Dr. Kaba Urgessa, Ethiopia state minister of education, spoke at the fourth annual on September 27, 2016. In his presentation, Urgessa underscored the importance of this donation and of geoinformation to his country’s alignment with the United Nations 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.
"This is a great step that the Ethiopian government has made," said Judah arap Bett, managing director, Esri Eastern Africa. "The initiative will create a geoenabled community in the near future. We echo our support and partnership with EthERNet and the universities in Ethiopia to make this vision come alive."
For more information about Esri education initiatives, please visit esri.com/industries/education.