Students make sense of public opinion stats

05 March 2007

Four intensive weeks of juggling and teasing out statistics ended on 16 February when the 2007 Afrobarometer Summer School drew to a close.

A group of 25 students, from NGOs and universities across the continent, spent the four weeks at UCT, where they were taught how to analyse public opinion, using statistical tools.

They used data from Afrobarometer Round 3 surveys, which was captured in 18 countries, to develop their own research papers in areas like political trust, gender equality and government performance.

"The course serves to increase the pool of people in Africa, who have no statistical knowledge at all, to interpret the Afrobarometer data," says Associate Professor Robert Mattes, director of the Centre for Social Science Research (CSSR) at UCT and co-founder of Afrobarometer. The CSSR is the supporting unit and host.

A Norwegian Agency for Development Co-operation (NORAD) grant to the value of $350 000 funds the course for 2006 and 2007.

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