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ABOUT WABER CONFERENCE

The West Africa Built Environment Research (WABER) Conference was started in November 2008 through an initiative of the School of Construction Management and Engineering, University of Reading, UK. The University of Reading School of Construction Management and Engineering provided the seed funding for the first event which took place at the British Council in Accra, Ghana on 2-3 June 2009. Afterwards, the WABER Conference became an independent organisation and was subsequently registered in Ghana in 2011 as a company limited by guarantee. Our registered name is “West Africa Built Environment Research Conference”. WABER is the acronym for the first five words in our name and that is why we are known simply as WABER Conference. The WABER Conference committee provides the infrastructure and academic leadership for developing our activities and impact an organisation.

The original objective of the WABER conference was to provide a vehicle for the development of built environment research in West Africa through giving young researchers and early-career scholars an outlet for developing their research work and skills through constructive face-to-face interaction with experienced international academics and their peers; provide an outlet for people to discuss and disseminate their latest research work; and supply a platform for networking and collaboration among more senior academics. Today WABER has grown into a full-fledged conference hosting about 150 people at each conference and we have made significant impact in the West Africa region especially when it comes to helping early career researchers to develop their research work and skills; and also when it comes to facilitating knowledgeable interaction among built environment researchers.

When we started in 2008, we were the only conference of its kind in the built environment field in the region and it took much effort to bring the senior academics and doctoral researchers in the field together for the first event which took place in Accra in 2009. That first event made a major impact on the development of the built environment field in the West Africa region and formed a solid foundation for many positive developments including research quality. One of the developments we feel proud of is that through the WABER Conference, many built environment academics in the region got to meet each other and that opened the door for several possibilities including collaborative work, other conferences which others now organise, and new contacts for peer review and external examination activities.

We currently have researchers from more than 50 institutions on the African continent who participate actively in our WABER Conferences. Most of these institutions are universities and polytechnics in Nigeria and Ghana but our conferences consistently attract participants from other countries in Africa, Europe, Asia, Australia and the US. Our network of institutions and people has enabled us to pursue a number of initiatives including the development of a textbook on “Construction in West Africa” launched at the WABER 2012 conference in Abuja, Nigeria. Our WABER conferences have also enabled us to publish more than 700 research papers that are supplying some of the knowledge required to improve the construction sector and national economies on the African continent. In 2011, we visited and organised research seminars for lecturers and students in six polytechnic across Ghana and donated key textbooks to their libraries as a means of supporting learning and research in the built environment field. We also visited six leading universities in Nigeria in 2011 to interact with staff and students in built environment departments. More needs to be done in the coming years to further develop the built environment field and construction industry in Africa.

In 2013, we expanded our portfolio of activities which enabled us to make greater impact within the construction industry and contribute to the development of the wider higher education industry beyond just the built environment field. We started organising academic practice development workshops for lecturers in higher education institutions; and professional development workshops for practitioners in the built environment field and other professionals involved in the infrastructure projects. These workshops are organised through WABER Continuing Professional Education (CPE) Services.

Our values as an organisation are knowledge, interaction, people and leadership.

EVENTS ORGANISED BY WABER CONFERENCE SINCE 2009.

We have successfully organised more than 30 events since 2009 comprising of Academic research conferences, Academic practice development workshops for lecturers in higher education institutions, Continuing professional education workshops for built environment professionals, and Workshop for graduate research students. Through our events and the highly regarded resource persons we bring, almost 2000 people have been impacted and enabled to develop their knowledge and skills in their areas of work and interest. Below is a list of human development events we have organised and presented since 2009.

WABER CONFERENCES

WABER 2009 Conference, 2-3 June 2009, British Council, Accra,Ghana

WABER 2010 Conference, 27-28 July 2010, British Council, Accra, Ghana

WABER 2011 Conference, 19-21 July 2011, British Council, Accra, Ghana

WABER 2012 Conference, 24-26 July 2012, Abuja, Nigeria

WABER 2013 Conference, 12-14 August 2013, British Council, Accra, Ghana

WABER 2015 Conference, 10-12 August 2015, University of Ghana, Accra, Ghana

WABER 2017 Conference, 16-18 August 2017, University of Ghana, Accra, Ghana

WORKSHOPS, COURSES & SEMINARS

2013

1-day CPD course in construction procurement and supply chain management in infrastructure delivery, 15 August 2013, Coconut Groove Hotel, Accra, Ghana, Facilitated by Dr Ron Watermeyer

2015

3-day course on Teaching and Learning in Higher Education, UPSA, Accra, 11-14 August 2015, Facilitated by Prof Carmel McNaught

3-day course on Teaching and Learning in Higher Education, University of Ghana, 13-15 August 2015, Facilitated by Kristina Edstrom from KTH, Sweden

2 Day course on Construction Procurement and Supply Chain Management in Infrastructure Delivery , 13-14 August 2015, ISSER Conference Complex, University of Ghana, Legon, Facilitated by Dr Ron Watermeyer

Teaching and Learning in Higher Education Course, 12-14 November 2015, Ghana College of Physicians and Surgeons, Accra, Ghana, Facilitated by Prof Carmel McNaught

Teaching and Learning in Higher Education Course, 16-18 November 2015, KNUST, Kumasi, Ghana, Facilitated by Prof Carmel McNaught

3 day staff development training in Teaching and Learning in Higher Education, 23-25 November 2015, GIMPA, Accra, Ghana, Facilitated by Prof Carmel McNaught

2 – day in-house training programme on “Academic research and publications’’, 26-27 November 2015, Zenith University College, Accra, Ghana, Facilitated by Prof Sam Azasu

2016

1-day workshop on Supervising research students and examining dissertations, 8th March 2016, Accra, Ghana, Facilitated by Prof Carmel McNaught

Introduction to University Teaching and Learning, 9-11 March 2016, Central Hotel, Accra, Ghana, Facilitated by Prof Carmel McNaught

3-day course on Teaching and Learning in Higher Education, 14-16 March 2016, Ho Technical University, Ghana, Facilitated by Prof Carmel McNaught

3-day course on Teaching and Learning in Higher Education, 21-23 March 2016, University of Health and Allied Sciences (UHAS), Ho Technical University, Ghana, Facilitated by Prof Carmel McNaught

3-day workshop on Teaching and learning in higher education, 14-16 March 2016, KNUST, Kumasi, Ghana, Facilitated by Dr Amy Burge, Institute for Academic Development, University of Edinburgh, UK

1-day workshop on Supervising research students and examining dissertations, 17 March 2016, KNUST, Kumasi, Ghana, Facilitated by Dr Amy Burge, Institute for Academic Development, University of Edinburgh, UK

2-day workshop on Teaching and learning in higher education, 22-23 March 2016, Koforidua Technical University, Koforidua, Ghana, Facilitated by Dr Amy Burge, Institute for Academic Development, University of Edinburgh, UK

1-day workshop on Supervising research students and examining research projects, 24 March 2016, Koforidua Technical University, Koforidua, Ghana, Facilitated by Dr Amy Burge, Institute for Academic Development, University of Edinburgh, UK

Senior Academics Professional Development Programme, 30 March – 1 April 2016, Central Hotel, Accra, Facilitator: Prof Gina Wisker, University of Brighton

1-day workshop on Writing for Academic Publication, 6 April 2016, Central Hotel, Accra, Ghana, Prof Gina Wisker, University of Brighton

2017

Construction Law Seminar, 26-27 April 2017, British Council, Accra, Ghana, in collaboration with Pinsent Masons and Bentsi-Enchill, Letsa & Ankomah – Resource persons were: Rob Morson, DKD Letsa, Rockson Dogbegah, Justice Gertrude Torkornoo

Construction Law Seminar, 14-15 August 2017, British Council, Accra, Ghana, in collaboration with Pinsent Masons and Bentsi-Enchill, Letsa & Ankomah – Resource persons were: Rob Morson, Rob Wilkins, DKD Letsa, Elizabeth Ashun, Rockson Dogbegah, Dr Ron Watermeyer

Infrastructure Procurement and delivery management workshop, 17-18 August 2017, British Council, Accra, Ghana, Facilitated by Dr Ron Watermeyer (Director of Infrastructure Options (Pty) Ltd & Chairperson of the ISO Technical Sub-committee on Construction Procurement

Academic Writing and Publication Workshop, 18 August 2017, University of Ghana, Accra, Ghana – Facilitated by Prof Jason Shaw (Hong Kong Polytechnic University, Hong Kong) and Prof Will Hughes (University of Reading, UK)

Workshop for Research Supervisors, 18 August 2017, University of Ghana, Accra, Ghana – Facilitated by Prof Jason Shaw (Hong Kong Polytechnic University, Hong Kong) and Prof Will Hughes (University of Reading, UK

2018

Construction Law Seminar, 25-26 April 2018, British Council, Accra, Ghana, in collaboration with Pinsent Masons and AB & David Africa – Resource persons: Rob Morson, David Ofosu-Dorte, Ferdinand Adadzi, Rockson Dogbegah, Justice Gertrude Torkornoo, Dr Ron Watermeyer

Workshops for Lecturers in Higher Education Institutions, 3-10 July 2018, British Council, Accra, Ghana – Resource persons: Prof Carmel McNaught and Prof David M. Kennedy

Workshop for Graduate Research Students, 6 July 2018, British Council, Accra, Ghana – Resource persons: Prof Carmel McNaught and Prof David M. Kennedy