Interview with Oguta Job Francis from Busitema University, Uganda
How do we find a cheaper alternative to produce enough quality food to feed the world? Read through Job Oguta’s responses on the impact of his research on SDG Goal 2 – Zero Hunger, and the invaluable contributions scientists like Mr. Oguta are making to the African continent.
Can biotech crops improve soil health?
The Uganda’s most competitive essay challenge focused on biotechnological aspects. In the year 2017, 5th Annual national biotechnology essay contest was organised under the theme; ‘can biotech crops improve soil health?’ and this very essay was number 8 in the University Category.
Cite as: Job Francis, O. J. (2019, November 9). Can biotech crops improve soil health? https://doi.org/10.31730/osf.io/vzbdg
Oguta Job Francis
B.Sc. in Fisheries and Water Resources Management at the Busitema University, Uganda
How did you learn about AfricArXiv?
I attended a workshop hosted by Dr. Kizito Omala, which focused on Research reproducibility and openness, from which I decided to start off with a research paper.
Have you previously shared results on other preprint or institutional repositories?
Yes I have, I shared a preprint on OSF; “A research on the possibility to use black soldier fly larvae as Nile tilapia feed or a component in the feed”.
Job Francis, O. J. (2019, June 13). Black soldiers fly larvae as the major protein component for Nile tilapia feeds. https://doi.org/10.31219/osf.io/4uxsz
How is your research relevant to the African context?
I don’t take for granted the effort of the United Nations through the SDGs to reach a Zero Hunger world within a decade or two. The ability to find a cheaper alternative to produce enough quality food to feed the world will be a dream come true. Africa still remains the most vulnerable region of the world due to many factors.
What challenge were you setting out to address when you started this work and what are the discoveries that have led you to your current results?
Even though the majority of the African population are into farming, most farmers in the poorest parts do not own lands thus practice subsistence farming, therefore remain poor because they do not sell their produce.
I refer to over-dependence on capture fisheries other than aquaculture with excuses of cost for seed and feeds, yet we can acquire locally and environmentally friendly feeds. The question to me was: how do we welcome the necessary evil? The research paper answers the question much better.
How do you envision research communication in Africa?
In my perception, generally undergraduate research is not taken seriously. The challenge so far is that most people don’t give feedback on what they discover in my writings, even though my article has been viewed 61 times on AfricArXiv. It will be a pleasure if somebody spoke about how they perhaps find my articles and where I can improve.
We are not yet on the road, very few people are in research and even when we publish, very few people find time to read through research articles. I hope one day we get there and show the world the way to go.
Thank you for the interesting conversation. Mr. Oguta is working to provide solutions to food security in Africa. To achieve Zero Hunger, we need to explore cheaper alternatives to produce enough quality food for the population. Undergraduate research in Africa needs more appreciation and attention than it is currently experiencing.
Do you have any thoughts or questions for Mr. Oguta? You can leave them in the comment box below.
Editors: Johanssen Obanda (text) and Priscilla Mensah (image)
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