IAS at the University of Ibadan Research and Development Fair 2017

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This year’s University of Ibadan Research and Development (UIRESDEV) Fair took place 8-9 November at the International Conference Centre, University of Ibadan. The theme of the fair was ‘Informing Policy with Evidence-Based Research and Innovation’. Faculties, institutes, and centres in the University of Ibadan community were all provided with display spaces where they could put up for the public materials exemplifying their contributions to policy development in Nigeria.

Our Institute’s booth on the expansive fairground brought together the multivalent elements of the ten disciplines within which we do scholarship, research and pedagogy in African Studies. We also drew attention to some of the specific ways in which we have impacted policy in Nigeria as regards the women’s movement, the relations between the African homeland and its diasporas, the integration of traditional African medicine into the mainstream architecture of healthcare delivery, and the inclusion of the paradigms of indigenous knowledge and practice in the sustainable development agenda.

The IAS stand was a major centre of attraction at the fair. We had packages of traditional medications on sale as well as a boiling cauldron of herbal medicine for malaria treatment, from which guests at the fair drank measures. We had a troupe of drummers, led by Seun Omisakin, an MA student in our African Music unit, to entertain visitors. An array of documentary evidence of our policy-oriented research output was on view at our booth, and staff and students were on hand to interact with visitors and converse with them on the development and prospects of African Studies at IAS-UI.

We were able to demonstrate to guests and visitors the different ways in which the specialized organs of IAS-UI over the years have rendered services to researchers both within the University community and beyond. We emphasized particularly the fact that our fellows’ outreach has a catchment that draws from decision-makers in the public and private spheres, both on a local and transnational scale, in all areas of endeavour that impinge on African cultures and societies.