CCM Trains Officials from MMDAs on Geographical Information Systems

The Centre for Coastal Management (CCM) in conjunction with the Department of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences is holding an intensive training course on Geographical Information Systems (GIS) for selected officials from some government agencies, Metropolitan, Municipal and District Assemblies (MMDAs) at the University of Cape Coast (UCC). GIS is a computer system built to capture, store, manipulate, analyze, manage and display all kinds of spatial or geographical data. The five-day training programme is aimed at building the capacity of participants on GIS and the need to improve sustainable development of coastal environment. Some of the topics to be treated at the workshop are Introduction to GIS, Developing Effective GIS Teams, Global Positioning System, Effective GIS Leadership and Communication. Giving an overview of the USAID/UCC Fisheries and Coastal Management Capacity Building Support Project, the Director of the Centre, Prof. Denis Aheto, noted that the project was to support government to achieve its middle-income development goals of poverty reduction, food security, sustainable fisheries management and coastal biodiversity conservation. He said CCM has been providing capacity building, research, and extension in coastal and fisheries management beyond the confines of the University. Annually, he said, CCM, through the support of USAID, trains personnel in areas as coastal governance, marine affairs, fisheries management, amongst others. The Director of CCM used the opportunity to introduce participants to FishCoMGhana, a platform which provides information on relevant data through the internet to support fisheries and coastal resource management and research in Ghana. He explained that FishCoMGhana serves as a one-stop shop for accessing historical data rescued from various sources and also contains social and scientific information, including new field observations and experimental results on inland, marine and coastal fisheries, as well as other resources in Ghana. He said as part of measures to curb the menace of dissertation malpractices among students, all the public universities have agreed to put all theses by their students on the online platform. That, he pointed out, would reduce the incidence where students go to other institutions to copy the works of their colleagues and present them to their supervisors as the originators of the works. In his opening remarks, the Dean of the School of Biological Sciences, Prof. Justice K. Sarfo, urged participants to make good use of the knowledge they would acquire during the week-long workshop to transform operations at their workplaces. The Head of the Department of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences, Dr. Noble Asare, stressed the need for officials of the MMDAs to keep data for future development of their assemblies.