Upcoming: new webinar on AGROVOC and the value of the Swahili content

FAO/Katarzyna Pankowska

Changing data landscape: AGROVOC and the value of the Swahili content

Date: 18th May 2022

Time: 4:00 pm EAT (GMT+3), duration 1 hour

Since the early 1980's, the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) has coordinated AGROVOC, a valuable tool for data to be classified homogeneously, facilitating interoperability. Available in more than 40 languages, AGROVOC is a multilingual and controlled vocabulary tool (thesaurus) that covers the areas of agriculture, food security and other FAO areas of interest. It facilitates access and visibility of data across domains and languages. 

In November 2021, Makerere University joined the AGROVOC Editorial Community to enhance its awareness and increase content in Swahili language. The Makerere University is one of the institutions in Uganda where Swahili is not only taught as a subject or language but also spoken. Established in 1922 as a technical school, the Makerere University is among the oldest and most prestigious English Universities in Africa. 

As  reported in UNESCO’s Africa Renewal in 2021, Swahili is among the ten most widely spoken languages in the world. The number of Swahili speakers, native and second-language speakers is estimated to be approximately 200 million. Having originated in East Africa, Swahili language speakers cover more than 14 countries. These include the United Republic of Tanzania, Kenya, Uganda, Rwanda, Burundi, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, South Sudan, Somalia, Mozambique, Malawi, Zambia, Comoros, and as far as Oman and Yemen in the Middle East. It is one of the working languages of the Africa Union (AU) and Southern African Development Community (SADC). It is projected to be used in all African nations by 2063. 

Programme for Capacity Development in Africa (P4CDA) is the South to South Secretariat Office of Global Open Data for Agriculture and Nutrition. Its mandate is to accelerate the achievement of food security and good health through nutrition by supporting the creation and use of Open data platforms and innovative technologies among member countries. The knowledge shared is sourced from open data platforms such as AGROVOC, that serves as a one stop shop, providing knowledge and links to information needed for reference. P4CDA works directly with farmers and farmer associations, academia, government, and private stakeholders in the agriculture sector identifying gaps and meeting the capacity needs in the ecosystem towards the achievement of food and nutrition security in communities.

The webinar

In collaboration with Makerere University and the Programme for Capacity Development in Africa (P4CDA), FAO is organizing a webinar about AGROVOC being edited in Swahili. This webinar will highlight the importance of deepening its coverage in Swahili. 

The event will be presented by Mr Onan Mulumba from Makerere University introducing the FAO-Makerere University collaboration on AGROVOC in Swahili; and Mr Felix Kariuki, who will present the application of AGROVOC in the Dairy Goat Farming working group.

Registration process

Participation in the event is free of charge and requires registration at the following link: