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Case Study: How SCiO Empowers Scientists to Tackle Global Climate Challenges

· 5 min read
Marketa Chalupnikova

case study scio

SCiO, a Greek deep tech company, offers specialized bespoke services across the entire lifecycle of scientific data management. Their vision is to build solutions integral to the advancement of data-driven, collaborative science that addresses most preeminent global problems related to climate, food, the environment and their effects on human health and well-being. To achieve this, SCiO leverages a broad range of technical and methodological expertise in the area of Big Data Analytics, towards providing services that morph data into meaningful answers.

CSO: Climate Security Observatory Platform

One of the SCiO’s important project is the development of Climate Security Observatory. CSO is implemented by the Climate Security Research team of Alliance Bioversity & CIAT.

It’s a powerful decision-support tool designed to aid stakeholders in understanding and addressing climate-related security risks. They look at how climate change worsens conflicts, find out where the most vulnerable areas are, and determine who needs the most help. Then, they come up with ways to stop this cycle.

CSO aggregates, processes, and analyzes data from various sources, spanning over 20 years, to understand the current climate security landscape comprehensively, with qualitative and quantitative analyses at the country level.

cso platform

Growing Global Impact

The Climate Security Observatory currently includes detailed country profiles integrating conflict and climate data from 13 countries across Central America, Africa, and South Asia.

The Climate Security research team is partnering with local groups in these areas to hold workshops and help people understand and use the platform better. Given that a significant portion of these countries are Spanish and French speaking, they decided to localize the platform to both languages.

In the next few years, they plan to extend the platform's impact by adding more country profiles and new languages to match the diverse languages spoken in these regions.

cso coverage map

Planning to localize the CSO platform

Panagiotis Zervas, COO of SCiO, mentions that localizing software is always a time-consuming and costly process.

“The main challenge we were facing was the synchronization of several different actors (e.g., translation experts and developers), with very different backgrounds. Furthermore, we needed to have a way that could work both asynchronously and fast, while ensuring high quality outcome. Tolgee helped us to establish a simple, yet thorough process that can easily establish a “source of truth” for the localization part of a project. Furthermore, Tolgee allows easy connection of the translation outcomes with our CI/CD pipelines, leading to fast and reliable deployments of our projects.“

cso project in tolgee localization platform

In SCiO, the main requirements for the localization platform for the CSO platform were the following:

  • Support for translating the existing content into multiple languages to cater to the needs of multiple target audiences.
  • To provide user-friendly interfaces for making it easy for users to collaboratively translate the existing content to the language(s) of reference.
  • Integration endpoints supporting industry-accepted design principles.

“From a project management perspective, the main challenge is to avoid having a time-consuming process that requires careful monitoring, e.g., managing the translation process, coordinating with translators and localization teams etc., leading to delays and poor quality of the translated process. In addition, having a tool that is compatible with the project’s existing technology stack is essential to the success of the project. Tolgee has managed to excel in both aspects, making it a vital element of the overall architecture.”

Translating CSO to Spanish & French

The Climate Security Research team at Alliance Bioversity & CIAT includes native Spanish and French speakers, who carefully did all the translations of the platform. If any text was missed during the translation, the platform developers used machine translations as a backup. Then, other skilled native speakers in the Climate Security Research team checked these machine translations to make sure they were accurate.

nigeria page in french

“Having a central reference tool where multiple users can join and translate content is a major shift from the old-school approach of sharing spreadsheet files where mistakes are difficult to avoid.“

After translating the platform, they observed a significant uptick in platform visitors from Spanish and French-speaking countries compared to the initial version, which was exclusively available in English. Specifically, there was a notable 30% surge in both the number of visits and the average duration spent on the platform.

SCiO doesn't stop only with the CSO Platform

SCiO is currently supporting the Ethiopian Digital AgroClimate Advisory Platform (EDACaP), aiming to translate it from English to Ethiopian language using Tolgee. In collaboration with the Ethiopian Ministry of Agriculture and local research centers, it serves as a decision support system for farmers, policymakers, and researchers, leveraging historical data to optimize yield and production.

Localization Best Practice Revealed

As we wrapped up, we asked Panagiotis one last question: If you had to choose one, what would you say is the most important software localization best practice?

A clear process that allows translators to provide their translations in a CI/CD philosophy. Organizing the translations in stages and connecting them with the actual CI/CD pipeline of a product leads to quicker and error-free deployments.

Tolgee for Open-Source

As open-source fans, we would love to support the open-source ecosystem, so our Business plan is free for all open-source projects like CSO. To get this offer, reach out to us by email or by DM in our Slack community.

“We would highly recommend Tolgee to other developers or development teams, because of how easy it is to use and integrate with available stacks. The support of the team was phenomenal. Incredible speed in response and very quick and precise fixing of issues.”

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