Public sector decision-makers from 22 African countries participated in the four-day capacity building session
Smart Africa under its capacity building arm the Smart Africa Digital Academy (SADA) in partnership with Intel Corporation held a capacity building workshop on artificial intelligence, to empower African public sector decision-makers on emerging technologies to drive informed policymaking, foster the growth of the digital economy, and promote national competitiveness.
The workshop is part of the “Digital Readiness for Leaders” program spearheaded by Intel which targets policymakers responsible for designing, developing, and deploying emerging technology-based solutions. The session was held from the 15th to 19th March 2021 and engaged in technology considerations for security in AI and the importance of data. Government officials from 22 African countries participated in the four-day virtual event. “We have built a strong relationship with Intel Corporation over several years as an integral member of the Smart Africa Alliance. This partnership is premised on the understanding that digital growth should be underpinned by strong and informed decision-making. Capacity building for decision-makers is a critical element through which we build towards a single digital market for Africa,” said Lacina Koné, Smart Africa’s CEO / Director-General.
Artificial intelligence is deemed crucial to digital and economic transformation. AI could increase global GDP by $15.7 trillion by 2030, creating the need for policymakers to understand its benefits and risks to promote responsible AI that leads to sustainable economic growth.
This capacity-building session comes at an opportune moment when Africa is experiencing significant technology adoption amid growing interest by tech giants in the African market. “There is a need for enabling policies that will unlock investments into Africa’s tech sector and facilitate skills development mainly for Africa’s growing young population. Educating and empowering government leaders on emerging technologies to drive informed policymaking and expand digital readiness for all is of utmost importance,” said Sven Beckmann, Intel Emerging Markets Director for Government and Education. “We are excited to work with Smart Africa and look forward to our collaboration with government leaders for their digital transformation journey.”
This is part of series of capacity-building initiatives that will be carried out by SADA throughout the year with the ultimate aim to accelerate digital transformation on the continent.