Together Around the World

11/11/20 Pratt School of Engineering

Bass Connections teams continue to engage globally despite pandemic

Duke International Education Week
Together Around the World

Duke celebrates International Education Week (November 9-13, 2020), reflecting on how the university’s global reach has continued despite limits on travel due to the pandemic. With 18 Bass Connections project teams and two student research teams conducting international research this year, and many more teams with students participating remotely from around the world, teams have had to adapt their research methods and find new ways of developing relationships with international partners.

This effort has included working collectively to develop research protocols that enable partners to collect data that is then shared and analyzed by teams here in Durham. Many teams are also regularly engaging with partners via Zoom as well as conducting field interviews online. While this shift is not without challenges, it has also provided teams with new opportunities to conduct field research at a lower cost and to increase engagement with global partners throughout the year – not just when the academic calendar permits physical travel.

In this team profile, students from the Healthcare Provider Education to Reduce Epilepsy Care Disparities in Uganda project team describe how they have developed relationships with partners at Makerere University in Uganda and conducted field interviews via Zoom. They are working to develop an improved epilepsy education program for Ugandan clinicians that takes into consideration the country’s healthcare infrastructure and sociocultural context.

Likewise, the Earthquake Early Warning in Nepal project team continues to work with partners at the Tribhuvan University Institute of Engineering (IOE) in Nepal to develop innovative seismic sensing technologies capable of early detection of a possible earthquake, while also considering the behavioral and policy landscape for any such system.