Director's Message

RMLA Advances

As you probably know, the BA has been promoting the Research Methods Library of Alexandria (RMLA) as a one stop shop for those who want to know more about designing research projects (Experimental and quasi-experimental design) and those who want to know more about the techniques of data collection and analysis from surveys to censuses. We are happy to say that we have succeeded in launching the RMLA, which today has lectures, courses, books and survey portal and which is endorsed by the Royal Society of Statistics in the UK and the American Statistical Association. Reviewed by hundreds of eminent statisticians, we are proud that a number of them are willing to be associated with our efforts and are donating their statistics books to the BA to also make these books available to those who would come to study in the Library in Alexandria (with adequate recognition to the donors).

The RMLA also includes a possibility of asking questions of others on the network, and this is backed up by a technical advisory committee of eminent experts in research design and in statistical analysis.  The RMLA is now developing a new tool to assist African researchers.  The Euclid matrix!

The Euclid Matrix is named after the most eminent of the permanent professors in the Ancient Library of Alexandria, Noting that Archimedes only came a visiting professor for a couple of years, during which time he gave us the Archimedean screw for Egyptian to raise water from the Nile to the fields for irrigating their crops.  Referred to locally as the “Tambour” the Archimedean screw is still in use in parts of rural Egypt to this day.  But Euclid gave us the magisterial treatise on “The Elements of Geometry”, which remains the only scientific work to be used continuously in all classrooms in the world a full 2200 years after it was written.  So it is in his honor that we decided to call the table of references that we intend to provide to all users of the RMLA. 

We have several courses on statistics and research design on You Tube available through the RMLA.  In fact what we plan to do is to construct this table using on the vertical side the topics of a basic course on statistics and research methods, and on the horizontal provide links to the videos of different professors explaining the same topic.  Thus if one found the explanation of one professor difficult, the other professor’s explanation of the same material may be more suitable.  We thus hope that we help those who need this help.

The RMLA is now found through a shortcut button on 20 websites and 7 links of 27 institutions throughout Africa and another 11 institutions from the rest of the world.

Ismail Serageldin
Librarian of Alexandria
Director of the Bibliotheca Alexandrina(BA)

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