About the 5th ISIbalo Conference of African Young Statisticians

Dates and VenueThe 5th ISIbalo Conference of African Young Statisticians will be held in Pretoria from the 13th to the 17th June 2016. As Stats SA moves to its new home, state-of-the-art premises in Salvokop near Freedom Park in Pretoria, the conference will be the first to utilise the new state of the art conference facilities of the new home of Statistics South Africa
In 2009, South Africa hosted the 57th Session of the International Statistical Institute (ISI). The ISI is a prestigious professional body of statisticians worldwide. Hosting the ISI Congress for the first time on the African continent, South Africa asked itself a question that remains relevant to this day: What value will South Africa and Africa yield in hosting this conference?Painfully aware of the limited participation of African scientists in the statistical fraternity circles and their limited contribution to research and scholarly knowledge, and also painfully aware of the demographics of the African statistical community, the ISIbalo African Young Statisticians Programme was born.This attempt to build capacity of Africa’s youth in statistics and related disciplines that influence statistical development and evidence for policy making and planning began in 2008 with the 1st ISIbalo Conference of African Young Statisticians. The years since then have seen active participation of African young statisticians who congregate in Pretoria every two years to present scientific papers in a variety of theoretical and official statistics.
Eight years later, as we prepare for the 5th ISIbalo Conference of African Young Statisticians, we ask ourselves the same question as we did in 2009 and more:
a) As South Africa hosts the 28th International Population Conference of the International Union on the Scientific Studies of Population (IUSSP) in 2017, will African demographers, population scientists, official statisticians and population & development practitioners hold their own at the conference in 2017? c) As the global community wrestle with notions of big data and the data revolution for Sustainable Development Goals and National Development Plans in this century, are we building the right capacity in our young professionals to meet these challenges going forward?
b) Have we sufficiently built the capacity of young statisticians to make a meaningful contribution to the study of population on Africa? d) Are we pacing ourselves relative to the ongoing and even rapidly growing methodological discourse?