Bookie, from Nigeria, is a postgraduate researcher in Development Policy and Management. Her thesis title is "The role of digital platforms in disrupting agricultural value chains in Nigeria".
On my background
After completing my master’s degree in Sustainable Agriculture and Food Security, I worked with the international development communications team at the Centre for Agriculture and Biosciences International (CABI) here in the UK.
It was during my time at CABI that I developed an interest in Information Communication Technologies for Development (ICT4D). I had the opportunity to work on some of CABI’s programmes which entailed using ICTs for agricultural and rural development in the global south.
Coming from a developing country where agriculture is the largest employer, I decided to build on my academic and professional background by pursuing a PhD in International Development Policy and Management with a focus on ICT4D.
On my research
My research focuses on understanding the extent to which digital platforms are transforming agricultural value chains in Nigeria.
Specifically, I am looking at agro-digital platform models which are new to the Nigerian agricultural sector, such as mobile and web applications, that provide various services along agricultural value chains.
On my motivation
When I decided to pursue a PhD, I was looking for a university with high academic standard and seasoned researchers in ICT4D.
The Global Development Institute (GDI) at The University of Manchester is currently in the top 1% of universities for development studies globally.
The GDI is also made of up world-renowned scholars in international development in general, and specifically in ICT4D research. When I started my search for universities, I looked at the research profiles and interests of academics within the GDI and I was pleased to discover there was a sub-discipline for ICT4D research (called the Centre for Development Informatics).
This gave me the confidence that the ICT4D research here at The University of Manchester was one of the best worldwide and I was sure that I wanted to be a part of this research community.
On my aspirations
Through my research, I hope to gain an in-depth understanding of the socio-technical impact of digital platforms within the context of developing country agriculture.
I also hope that my research findings will positively inform policy formulation that encourages the rapidly expanding agro-digital space in Nigeria, and that I will become a thought leader in ICT4D.