African Maths Initiative Blogs

Experiences in an Interdiscplinary Field Research.


Wilson taking the team through one of the brain storming sessions.

Wilson taking the team through one of the brain storming sessions.

Over the past two weeks, I have been involved in a research that is still ongoing and I just find it amazing. We are trying to find out different farming systems and feeding modes amongst smallholder farmers. This is focusing on Trans Nzoia county and its first phase is to last for the next 9 weeks. We have actually learnt a lot from representatives of various fields whereby we have developed questionnaires and practising on the usage of Open

Data Kit collect to collect data. We expect to effectively implement its usage which at the end will help us have consistent, realistic and effective data as per the objective.

Most individuals have got a wider understanding of the term “research”. This research would be contributed by researchers drawn from different backgrounds, disciplines and experiences. I have come to realize that independent of the above mentioned, one can be able to learn from other disciplines upon collaboration in any field of a research. A period of two weeks has turned my earlier understanding of this term into a very different perceptive.

Working with a diverse team in terms of discipline and culture has been an eye opener. Socializing with (GIS) Geographic Information System, Political Science, Mathematics, Soil Science, Biological Engineering and International Agriculture has actually confirmed that as an Agribusiness student I have a lot to learn from the team. In addition, the team is a representation of different institutions which include Kenya Agriculture and Livestock Research Organisation, Cornell University, Maseno University, University of Eldoret, Rongo Universty College and African Maths Initiative (AMI).

Given that every team member is interested in learning from different disciplines, it has been an interactive period of which we expect intense interactions as time goes by. Learning on how to plan and execute research related activities is what drives the team towards liking the collaborative nature of the research.

We are also working in a muliti-cultural setting. This has enabled us to learn from persons of different cultures. This has actually created a sense of cohesion among the team members. The experience is getting better each day and we hope to learn from each other more in both informal and formal interactions.

By Jairus Masayi

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