The East African School of Library and Information Science (EASLIS) under College of Computing and Information Sciences (CoCIS) hosted the public defense of PhD candidate Nina Olivia on Tuesday, 19th November 2019. The candidate who successfully defended her Ph.D was supervised by Prof. J.R. Ikoja-Odongo and Assoc. Prof. Ruth Nalumaga and her opponent was Prof. Charles Rwabukwali.

Her research topic was on “Indigenous Knowledge Utilization Strategies for HIV Prevention in Uganda: A Study of Secondary School Adolescents in Kampala District.”

HIV/AIDS remains a global threat especially amongst young people in the Developing world. Several preventive options have been fronted, most especially informed by biomedical facts, but HIV prevalence still remains high. In circumstances of ethnic diversity, the use of Indigenous Knowledge (IK) generated in one’s cultural context is one of the avenues being exploited by Uganda’s Ministry of Education and Sports (MoES) to guide adolescents in secondary schools on healthy information choices on HIV prevention.

However, there was insufficient information on the implementation of this approach, especially IK content, and how it is sought and used in the school setting. This study assessed use of IK in HIV prevention, among adolescents in ten secondary schools in Kampala District. Wilson’s model of Information Behavior and Social Network Analysis formed the conceptual anchors for the study.

The objectives were; examining IK use in the existing HIV/AIDS school initiatives, documenting IK content used by adolescents for HIV prevention, analyzing adolescents’ information seeking and to propose a model for enhancing IK use in secondary schools in Uganda. Concurrent mixed methods research design was adopted with a study population of 578 respondents. Over all 399 survey respondents participated with 46.6% males and 53.4% females, while a total of 179 key informants engaged in 39 key informant interviews and 20 adolescent single sex focus group interviews.