Posted by Dr. Eric Vance -- Sun, 05/17/2015 - 6:00am
Yesterday I figured out my purpose and role for this trip. My purpose is to strengthen and grow the LISA 2020 Network. My role is to be a collaborative statistician who makes observations and asks questions to understand the problems, brainstorms methods to solve the problems, and helps implement solutions.
To be an effective, collaborative, traveling statistician one must be flexible. What I mean by “flexible” is not being annoyed by differences between one’s experience and one’s expectations.
Posted by Dr. Eric Vance -- Fri, 05/15/2015 - 3:58pm
I’m in Africa again, for the second time this year and my eighth time overall. With me is rising 3rd-year Statistics Ph.D. student Adam Edwards. He will be staying in Tanzania for 6+ months helping the Sokoine University of Agriculture Laboratory for Interdisciplinary Statistical Analysis (SUALISA) grow and become sustainable. The SUALISA is the 2nd statistical collaboration laboratory (stat lab) in the LISA 2020 Network. The first was the LISAC (Laboratory for Interdisciplinary Statistical Analysis and Collaboration) at Obafemi Awolowo University in Ile-Ife, Nigeria.
Posted by Dr. Eric Vance -- Sun, 01/18/2015 - 10:49pm
There are many tribes in Nigeria. The dominant three are the Yorubans of the Southwest, the Igbo of the Southeast, and the Hausa of the North.
Posted by Dr. Eric Vance -- Sun, 01/18/2015 - 4:37pm
In the morning of my first full day in Nigeria 10 days ago, I had a strange thought. I kept quiet about the thought so as not to disrespect Olawale, the First LISA Fellow, or to scare Ian, the LISA Ambassador. That first day I thought, “OMG, I can’t wait to be back home already!”
At the time I didn’t know why I was thinking that. I wasn’t nervous about being in a developing country in Africa. I was excited about the purpose of the trip to work on building the network of LISA 2020 stat labs. I had no reason to feel that way.
Posted by Dr. Eric Vance -- Sat, 01/17/2015 - 5:02pm
Last night Dr. Olubusoye came over to my guest lodge again for further conversation. We talked about plans and next steps, why he likes the vision of LISA 2020, and the challenges he expects a stat lab to face at the University of Ibadan (UI).
Posted by Dr. Eric Vance -- Sat, 01/17/2015 - 2:47pm
Yesterday was highlighted by a courtesy visit to meet the Dean of the Faculty of Science, my university-wide seminar on “LISA 2020: Sharing Experience of Virginia Tech with the University of Ibadan,” and a reception following the seminar.
Posted by Dr. Eric Vance -- Thu, 01/15/2015 - 7:18pm
My first day at University of Ibadan (UI) went very well today. UI is about an hour and a half drive from OAU, which Olawale made without too many troubles.
Posted by Dr. Eric Vance -- Wed, 01/14/2015 - 6:25pm
This morning I was running late. I had just finished cooking my eggs when Olawale arrived at Ian’s house with a honk of his horn. Never be in a rush in Africa. I continued washing the pan and the chopping board, and then went into the living/dining room to sit down and eat my four eggs, chopped onion, chopped red round pepper, and slice of packaged cheese leftover from the Newark Airport United Club last week. Olawale came in and noticed I was eating while I noticed he was anxious to leave immediately.
Posted by Dr. Eric Vance -- Tue, 01/13/2015 - 7:36pm
Yesterday I was frustrated by my lack of activity as an honored guest at Obafemi Awolowo University. I met the Dean of the Faculty of Science and the other Heads of Departments (HODs) and I met with the former HOD of the Department of Mathematics.
I wondered if there was anything I could do to increase the pace of activity so that my presence here these three days would be more useful to Olawale, Ian, and the Laboratory for Interdisciplinary Statistical Analysis and Collaboration (LISAC-pronounced Lye-Sack). I had one idea.
Posted by Dr. Eric Vance -- Mon, 01/12/2015 - 7:32pm
Today was a very frustrating day of indeterminate waiting, punctuated by bursts of incredible productivity, much like my experience of the internet here at Obafemi Awolowo University (OAU). Today Ian and I endured lots of waiting, not really sure what we were waiting for, when in fact we actually weren’t waiting for anything. It’s like me waiting for the internet stick to work, when in fact the local internet tower is down and won’t be back up until I stop waiting on move on to something else.