[python-uk] ANNOUNCEMENT: Python West Midlands Evidence for Development Hackday, 26th May

Sarah Mount mount.sarah at gmail.com
Tue May 22 23:44:54 CEST 2012

Hi guys, just to remind you, only a few days left until PyWM on
Saturday. Please do register if you're coming, so John can keep an eye
on the numbers for lunch and so on.

All the best,


On Fri, May 11, 2012 at 1:32 AM, Sarah Mount <mount.sarah at gmail.com> wrote:
> Calling all FOSS contributors! This hackday is a little different.
> Python West Midlands is hosting a hackday to kick off a new open
> source project for a very interesting little charity called Evidence
> for Development(EfD). EfD wants to help people make better decisions
> about aid projects – at local and national level – by putting real
> data about the real situation in the hands of the people making the
> decisions.
> If you want to know if your aid programme is making a difference to
> the right people then you need to model the economy of your target
> village or district, before and after. Makes sense; simple science
> right? Problem is you can' afford a bunch of western econometricians
> crawling all over the place (cost too much, takes too long) and anyway
> their cash-based economic models don't work that well in a place where
> cash is only a small part of the economy (grow your own; harvest wild
> food; get paid in kind or cash or both for day labour; trade crops,
> labour or other goods; etc, etc). So EfD developed simple economic
> models that work in this environment, that can be learned and applied
> by locally trained people and that, are built to run on laptops. No
> reliance on big foundations' data centres.
> Last year EfD, in partnership with Chancellor College of the
> University of Malawi and The University of  Wolverhampton developed a
> Python/MySQL app to model local economies that is already in use in
> several countries in Southern Africa.
> This year the challenge is bigger – to build software that can model
> national and international economies. The model exists and works (it
> has a great track record of predicting famine effects from annual
> summary surveys of rural economies). But the only current
> implementations are proprietary, ill-supported and not extensible.
> Smells like open source spirit.
> So for this hackday we're going to have with us the two developers who
> led the IHM development last year (from Chancellor College in Zomba,
> Malawi) and the developers of the modeling methodologies from EfD
> (from Barnes and Surrey – exotic eh?). We'll have a pretty complete
> MySQL database schema to work on and we hope to finish the day with a
> simple demo scenario that downloads reference data about a
> geographical area (a livelihood zone) produces a spreadsheet template
> to capture information about that livelihood zone (what they grow
> there, what they eat, how they make a living) runs some local
> completeness reports and uploads the captured data for merging (with
> other livelihood zone surveys) to allow analysis of a national survey.
> *** Date ***
> 10:30 onwards, 26th May. Please sign up here for a (free) ticket:
> http://efdhacks.bitbucket.org/
> *** Location ***
> Thyme Software
> Innovation Centre
> Coventry University Technology Park
> Puma Way
> Coventry
> CV1 2TT
> Map: http://g.co/maps/4mj43
> Please sign up here for a (free) ticket: http://efdhacks.bitbucket.org/
> --
> Sarah Mount, Senior Lecturer, University of Wolverhampton
> website:  http://www.snim2.org/
> twitter: @snim2

Sarah Mount, Senior Lecturer, University of Wolverhampton
website:  http://www.snim2.org/
twitter: @snim2

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