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Mitchel Offiong, Postgraduate Researcher

Mitchel Offiong - Water They Up To: CWS in the Spotlight

In this week's 'Water they up to: CWS in the Spotlight' feature, we find out more about Postgraduate Researcher Mitchel Offiong.

What is your research about?

I am currently interested in applying computational methods to solve water challenges affecting the sub-Saharan region. In particular, I am using a hybrid machine learning model to predict failures in smart water taps deployed in some rural communities in The Gambia, Africa. So far, two research articles have been published to show some of the initial results. 

What is the most exciting part about your research?

The most exciting thing about my research is the ability to use information technology to solve water challenges. It is really exciting to be supervised by supervisors from both computer science and water engineering - even though it comes with some challenges. It is also exciting to be able to meet one of the core needs of mankind and to find a solution to some water challenges. 

When thinking about water, what place comes to mind first and why?

Arid and semi-arid regions come to my mind when I think about portable water. These areas experience water scarcity due to poor rainfall and very high levels of evaporation. Sometimes I wonder how people in these regions cope with this challenge i.e. how they get edible water, how they grow crops etc. This is common within many African countries and I am sure something can be done scientifically to solve this problem. 

Which movie or book character would you most associate with water?

I can associate Moses with water. In as much as I don't want to sound too religious, but I see the act of striking a rock to produce water as phenomenal. The people that Moses led at that time needed water, and he was inspired to strike the rock to produce water to the satisfaction of the people. In a way, water scientists today are 'striking' rocks to make sure water security is achieved.

View Mitchel's profile.

Date: 21 February 2022

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