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Donato Longes

MSc in Information Technology Management, IT Carlow

Donato works as a senior IT officer in local government in Uganda. In 2020, he received an Ireland Fellows Programme award to study Information Technology Management at IT Carlow. 

I chose the Master of Science in Information Technology Management at IT Carlow because I wanted to advance my capacity to understand and design strategies to address ICT issues in pastoral communities, which has always been my dream.

Already I believe that my knowledge has been enhanced, not only in ICT academic studies, but in all aspects of social, cultural, and economic technology too.

The exposure to different technologies at IT Carlow has been mesmerising and I hope that this will be of benefit to my career when I return to Uganda. Since commencing my fellowship, my academic writing skills have drastically improved and I feel like I have also really enhanced my leadership and governance skills.

When I arrived in Ireland, the first thing I had to adjust to quickly was the cold weather and the food! It is very unfortunate that the COVID-19 pandemic has changed the way things are done globally as most governments have issued stringent measures to keep the virus at bay. With this in the background, it has been difficult for me to fully live my experience in Ireland. 

Despite this, I must say the level of organisational and cultural set-up of the Irish people is epic. I can relate it with my country as the people here are very friendly and I settled in quickly. The other thing I like is the beautiful buildings and countryside. I especially like the way the old buildings, such as the churches, have been preserved for the younger generations to see. It depicts how the people in Ireland are attached and cherish their roots, and are ready to preserve their cultural heritage.

The theoretical and practical knowledge that I have gained through my studies will open avenues for me to share my new knowledge through participating in development processes and exchanging ideas with stakeholders involved in ICT all over Uganda. In this way, I can support decisions that will contribute towards development both at district and national levels. I will also be better placed to integrate and handle complex situations involving information communications and technology.  

My research topic is “Assessing the utilisation of technology and the social-economic impact”. This topic was inspired by the fact that mobile communications has profoundly driven economic development in developed countries. Many developed countries attribute their fast-growing economies to their adoption of evolving technologies i.e. increased access to information, global connectivity, and expanding market access.

I hope to contribute to the integration of innovation and technology to the livelihoods of all the pastoral communities in Uganda and hopefully to other pastoral communities within East Africa. By integrating technology in their way of life, I hope to promote the role of ICT in fostering sustainable development.

In line with my academic ambitions, I see myself pursuing a Ph.D. in ICT, but the immediate goal is to complete my MSc in Information Technology Management to enable me better understand my childhood passion of the linkage and the critical role played by ICT in accelerating development in pastoral communities.

Studying in Ireland has been a great opportunity and I wish to extend my sincere gratitude to the Government of Uganda and the Government of Ireland for the continued support in building capacity development in Uganda. I believe through this support we will be able to contribute towards training leaders that will foster sustainable development.