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EXPLORING AFRICA'S DIGITAL REVOLUTION AND PROSPECTS OF DECENT JOBS FOR YOUTH
(Afe Babalola University)
Paper long abstract:
Digital transformation is a paradigm shift in organizational processes designed to add more value to products and services delivered to customers. It embraces a radical rethinking of how an organization applies technology, human capital and processes to fundamentally change business performance. A study by MIT Sloan Management Review and Capgemini Consulting (2013) reveals that business entities face a new digital imperative: adopt novel technologies effectively or face prospects of competitive obsolescence. The potential of digital transformation on business entities across the world is huge, reshaping every aspect of the modern enterprise. The United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) (2017) examines the evolution of the digital economy and its implications for trade and development. Findings reveal the digital economy is witnessing an exponential growth around the world: the global production of Information and Communication Technology (ICT) goods and services accounted for an estimated 6.5% of global Gross Domestic Product (GDP), with some 100 million people employed in the ICT services sector alone. The digital economy in Africa holds considerable prospects for economic growth and development. It provides not only opportunities for increased job creation and data for actionable agenda, but also accelerating access to quality, basic services, improving transparency and accountability of governments through e-services to improve all areas of public and basic service delivery. The economic impact of digital transformation in Africa is significant and rising, with mobile technologies and services generating 6.7% of Africa's GDP in 2015 and contributing about US$150billion of economic value. The digital economy in Africa holds considerable potential for youth employment. Against the backdrop of its young and dynamic labour force, as well as its untapped markets; the digital revolution presents unprecedented opportunities. However, in order to maximize the potential of the digital economy for youth employment, policy makers need to upgrade digital infrastructure, deepen partnerships with the private sector and the global community for the mobilization of resources critical for digital transformation in Africa.
Youth employment, knowledge and the labour markets; knowledge and society [initiated by Edukans with INCLUDE, ISCTE-IU Lisbon and Advance Afrika (Kampala, Uganda]]