Introducing The Carpentries Communications Manager, Oscar Masinyana

The Carpentries welcomes Oscar Masinyana, Communications Manager

We are pleased to welcome Abdul-Malik Sibabalwe Oscar Masinyana to The Carpentries Core Team! Oscar is our new Communications Manager and has extensive experience in academic and literary publishing, writing, translating and editing. We asked Oscar to share a bit about themself, read on to learn more!

My name is Abdul-Malik Sibabalwe Oscar Masinyana (he/him/they/them), and you are welcome to call me by any of these names. Most people call me Oscar. I am based in Johannesburg, South Africa, and it is such a pleasure to join The Carpentries community as a member of its Core Team.

I look forward to contributing meaningfully to the work that The Carpentries community has achieved and continues to do through the collaborative endeavors of its Instructors, Trainers, Lesson Developers and Maintainers, Curriculum Advisors, Coordinators, as members of Committees for specific tasks and interests, and of course its Executive Council that provides the whole community with strategic and organizational direction.

Significant aspects of the work that The Carpentries does overlaps in meaningful ways with aspects of my previous work as the Head of Researcher Services and Networks at Taylor & Francis’ Africa academic publishing programme, as well as my prior role as the Reading Communities Manager at Paperight. Through engagements with researcher, publishing industry and librarian communities as well as government, science councils and funder organizations on the African continent, I have had various opportunities to reflect on the principles and aims of the open scholarship movement and its impact on research output and the broader society.

I was easily drawn, therefore, to The Carpentries’ stated mission: “We teach foundational coding and data science skills to researchers worldwide.” With individual and institutional members distributed across the Global South and North and across subject areas, this is a testament to the success of the organization’s model of providing instructional workshops through tiered institutional membership schemes to support and expand the aims of the open scholarship communities by empowering researchers with the requisite skills in coding and data science and embedding this knowledge in their institutions and communities of practice. I wanted to be involved in amplifying these past and future efforts and to help build on the organization’s successes for the benefit of the broader open scholarship community.

Moreover, I am drawn to this community’s core values that include a commitment to always be learning. As someone who has always pursued as many opportunities for learning as possible, this core value really resonated with me. Just last month on 18 April 2023 I graduated with my 4th degree, a Bachelor of Laws (LLB) from the University of the Witwatersrand. My previous degrees, a Bachelor of Arts (BA) in Film and Media Production (2005), a BA Honors (2007) and a BA Masters (2014) in Linguistics were obtained from the University of Cape Town. In Linguistics my research interests centered on the sociolinguistic study of isiXhosa and the general promotion and development of African indigenous languages. It is wonderful, then, to be in a community where this commitment to exploring new areas of knowledge is embraced and the learning environment is also made a safe space by adherence to a code of conduct that expressly creates “a welcoming and supportive environment for all people, regardless of background or identity.”

I look forward to continuing my learning journey with all of you as members of this community, and I look forward to jointly welcoming into our community more researchers and members from around the world to join us in various available capacities and perhaps in capacities we are still to conceive as The Carpentries.

As the Communications Manager for our community, please feel free to leave a comment or reach out to me in the comments section below or

I look forward to engaging around our past and future projects and to sharing ideas with all of you.

I will also be reaching out to as many of you as possible, but for now I want to reiterate how excited I am to be here, with you, to take the mission of The Carpentries forward. Long may it live.

Dialogue & Discussion

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