The world has changed in 2020 and while organizations could do without a technology before the whole COVID-19 pandemic, now technology and digitalization are a must-do that no organization can afford to ignore.

Professional communities around the globe are struggling. While in-person events are still the best way to bring people together to build solid relationships, organizations across the world may not be able to host in-person events anytime soon and they need to find new ways to provide value to their communities. 

In this sudden new time of 'social distancing', everyone is stumbling through the motions in a daze. Connecting and engaging with your community is more important than ever. During this difficult time, it is imperative that members of a community come together to help one another. But how do you enable your community to thrive?

Key takeaways:

  • The impact of COVID-19 pandemic on professional communities in Africa
  • Strategies on how to grow and maintain your professional community
  • How to manage your community through digital
  • The importance of digital communication during crisis


12:00 PM - 1:00 PM


  • Sue George (Operations Manager at The South African Affiliate for the International Association for Impact Assessment)

    Sue George

    Operations Manager at The South African Affiliate for the International Association for Impact Assessment

    Sue has had an evolving career path, and still continues to cross new bridges every day. She started her working life as an Architectural Technician, then worked as a statutory Town Planning Administrator for 15 years. For 10 years thereafter, while working as an Integrated Environmental Management Professional, during which time she was the President of IAIAsa, she decided to refocus her attention on Knowledge Sharing and facilitating Continuous Professional Development in the Environmental Management sector.

    The five years spent as the IAIAsa Operations Manager have seen her efforts consistently focussed on growing and developing the membership of the Association, through working with the respective executive committees each year, and continuously striving to improve the service offering and benefits to members of the professional association.

    Enabling professional skills, and encouraging good practise in Integrated Environmental Management is the best way to contribute to “Sustainable development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs. (Bruntland Commission)

    Sue firmly believes that we will all have to upskill our technological abilities, and provide better platforms for online collaboration if we are to retain our members interest and ability to engage going forward.

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  • Mpho Mamabolo (General Manager at AfricaBio)

    Mpho Mamabolo

    General Manager at AfricaBio

    Mpho is the General Manager for Research & Strategy at AfricaBio. Previously, she served as the Manager of Health Strategic Technology Area at the Technology Innovation Agency (TIA).

    She previously worked as a research scientist/ molecular biologist at the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR Agricultural Research Council (ARC), and at the National Institute for Communicable Diseases (NICD). Mpho holds a Masters degree in Veterinary Science and is in the process of concluding her PhD studies in Microbiology.

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  • Dr. Daniella Munene (Chief Executive Officer at Pharmaceutical Society of Kenya)

    Dr. Daniella Munene

    Chief Executive Officer at Pharmaceutical Society of Kenya

    A pharmaceutical professional with over 12 years experience in strategic planning, business development, team leadership, and management of key stakeholder relationships in health.

    Over the course of her career, Daniella has focused on quality management systems for the health supply chain, as well as organizational regulatory compliance.

    Armed with a strong passion for equitable health for all, Daniella is involved in policy recommendations and idea mobilization in the pharmaceutical sector, towards attainment of universal health coverage.

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  • Jacob Mwangi (CEO of Architectural Association of Kenya)

    Jacob Mwangi

    CEO of Architectural Association of Kenya

    Jacob is the Chief Executive Officer of the Architectural Association of Kenya – a premier association representing seven built environment professions – architecture, quantity surveying, engineering, town planning, landscape architecture, environmental design and construction project management.

    He has been actively engaged in the formulation and implementation of the organization’s strategic objectives and which have resulted in a stronger and active research and advocacy, membership services and public communication functions.

    He is also a firm believer in technology as an important contributor to the organizational growth especially during this period.

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  • Eric Schmidt (CEO & Co-Founder of EventBank)

    Eric Schmidt

    CEO & Co-Founder of EventBank

    As CEO of EventBank, Eric L. Schmidt is focused on delivering cloud solutions that transform the way professional communities enable and enrich relationships. EventBank has office in 10 countries and clients in over 50. Eric’s focus is to continue building the best product for EventBank’s clients and expanding the company’s presence in emerging and developing markets around the world. Over the last 18 years, Eric has founded and incubated several companies from the ground up; including China Entrepreneurs which was the top community organization for more than 50,000 entrepreneurs, hosting more than 100 conferences annually.

    Eric was an elected member of American Chamber of Commerce in China's Board of Governors for three years (2017, 2018 & 2019) and is recognized as an authority on digital transformation and business in Asia. He has been featured in media such as The Wall Street Journal, Financial Times, Baron’s, BBC, CCTV, China Daily, and numerous other outlets.

    Eric once traced Marco Polo’s route from Beijing, China to Venice, Italy, 100 days by bicycle – he was appreciatively sponsored by Nike and Philips. He also previously lived in China (17 years) and Guatemala.

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