Training & engagement

One of our key objectives is to facilitate collaboration, training and capacity strengthening in emerging infections research. We facilitated a number of training and engagement activities to ensure that the Platform design supported researchers in Ebola-affected countries to make best use of the data assembled.

IDDO's first group of trainee data managers from Liberia and Sierra Leone in 2018
IDDO's first group of trainee data managers from Liberia and Sierra Leone in 2018

Our focus on training and capacity strengthening supported the development of data managers, researchers and policy makers in Ebola-affected countries to curate and analyse Platform data to produce new evidence for policy impact. These collaborators, trainees and fellows have provided critical input into the Platform Research Agenda, data management process and governance framework. In addition to the information below, an Engagement Activities Log is also available, providing a comprehensive list of all Platform engagement work.

As an exemplar of good practice in data governance, the Ebola Data Platform was presented at the World Health Organisation Health Data Governance Summit in June 2021 by Laura Merson, and in September 2021 by Mahamoud Sama Cherif. The platform was named in the World Health Organization Ebola/Marburg Research and Development Roadmap as a “model for collecting, standardizing and sharing clinical data under the authority of local leadership”. Experiences gained in developing the platform informed the UK Collaborative on Development Research (UKCDR) guidance titled Four Approaches to Supporting Equitable Research Partnerships. You can read the report and ‘Case Study 9’ about the Ebola Data Platform here.

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Activities to date include:


September 2022 - Ridha Chahed of Tunisia completed a Master Semester project titled Predicting Ebola diagnosis and outcome using machine learning: A retrospective cohort study on the 2014-16 West African epidemic. The project, which used the Ebola Platform data, was a part of the EPFL African Exchange Program.


May 2022 – Mavis Amoa-Dadzeasah and Christabel Lemukong Ngufor undertook their Masters in Mathematical Sciences at the African Institute for Mathematical Sciences, Cameroon. IDDO supported Mavis and Christabel’s studies by co-supervising their Masters' theses which involved analyses of data from the Ebola Data Platform to better understand indicators and determinants of mortality in Ebola patients.


April 2022Trokon Yeabah is a Data Manager at the National Public Health Institute of Liberia with experience in managing fatalities data during the Ebola outbreak in Liberia. He initially joined IDDO in 2018 as a Data Curator  and completed data management and science training at the University of Oxford. He  returned to IDDO in 2022 to complete a 12-month WHO TDR Clinical Research and Development Fellowship. Trokon worked to further develop his skills in data management and clinical research, and focussed his time on COVID-19 and Ebola Virus Disease research, developing expertise in study design, statistical analysis, R programming, grant writing and research operations.  


2021 - Idriss Cabrel Tsewalo Tondji completed the African Master of Machine Intelligence at the African Institute for Mathematical Sciences in Cameroon with a data science thesis using the Ebola Platform. His thesis, titled Distributed collaborative learning for Ebola diagnosis: a real world benchmark was supported by the EPFL African Exchange Program.


2021 - John Kamwina completed his PhD studies at the University of Kinshasa in the Democratic Republic of Congo with the support of the EPFL African Exchange Program and the Ebola Platform.


Photo of Dr Kwame Oneill

January 2020Dr Kwame Oneill has joined IDDO as the Platform’s next Fellow supported by the Special Programme for Research and Training in Tropical Diseases (TDR) hosted at WHO. A clinician and District Medical Officer based at the Sierra Leone Ministry of Health and Sanitation, Kwame was with IDDO for a 12-month training programme based at the University of Oxford. He focussed on developing skills in data management, clinical research, data governance and biostatistical analysis.


September 2019  Dr Sulaiman Jalloh, a clinician from Sierra Leone who recently completed his studies on the Masters in International Health and Tropical Medicine at Oxford University, had a placement as a Research Intern with IDDO until March 2020. Sulaiman focussed on developing skills in systematic review, data extraction and data analysis to create a core outcome set for Lassa fever clinical trials while supporting the launch of the Ebola Data Platform. Sulaiman is a staff member at the Sierra Leone Ministry of Health and Sanitation.


August 2019 – In collaboration with the University Gamal Abdel Nassar Conakry, IDDO delivered a one week training in research methods for 35 of the University’s clinical assistants. These assistants are responsible for supervision of research theses by medical students. Funding was provided by the Special Programme for Research and Training in Tropical Diseases (WHO/TDR).


September 2018 to March 2019 – Wahdae-mai Harmon, a clinician and researcher from Liberia, undertook a six month internship at IDDO following the completion of her Masters in International Health and Tropical Medicine at Oxford University. Wahdae-mai received training on systematic review, reference software and screening tools, and implemented these skills to assemble global evidence on clinical outcomes in Ebola and viral hemorrhagic fevers.


November 2018 – IDDO hosted three data management trainees from Liberia and Sierra Leone for a one-month training collaboration. They were based at the IDDO office and completed intensive training with our data team. They developed skills in data curation, data standards, statistical programming, informatics and data security. They also had the opportunity to participate in local and national events including the 2018 Better Science through Better Data event in London. They are now part of the Ebola Data Platform Secretariat. Their skilled input supported the curation of Platform data as a part of our Ebola data team. 

Fayiah Tamba is a lecturer in statistics at the University of Liberia and Researcher at the National Public Health Institute Liberia

Trokon Omarley Yeabah is a data manager at the National Public Health Institute Liberia.

Musa Martin Feika is a data manager and administrative officer in the Directorate of Health Security and Emergencies, Sierra Leone Ministry of Health and Sanitation.


December 2017–18Mahamoud Sama Cherif, a clinician and clinical researcher at the University Gamal Abdel Nassar Conakry, Guinea, undertook a 12 month Clinical Research and Development Fellowship based at IDDO. This opportunity, funded by the Special Programme for Research and Training in Tropical Diseases (WHO/TDR) included training and mentorship in data management, clinical research and biostatistical analysis.


January 2018IDDO hosted a workshop on Improving Research Data to Inform Better Treatment of Poverty-Related Infectious Diseases in Nairobi, Kenya. The workshop was attended by more than 50 data managers, biostatisticians and researchers, primarily from sub-Saharan Africa. The activity was supported by funding from the British Council and the Newton Fund Researcher Links scheme.


August 2017Julius Gilayeneh, a physician from Liberia, undertook his Masters in International Health and Tropical Medicine at Oxford University. Julius’s academic supervision was provided by IDDO and he conducted his thesis with the support of IDDO on the use of Ebola evidence to inform the development of treatment guidelines during the 2014–16 West African Ebola outbreak. Following the completion of his Masters, Julius undertook a six-month internship at IDDO to develop research management, ethics and governance skills.