Click the star to add/remove an item to/from your individual schedule.
You need to be logged in to avail of this functionality.


African digital futures 
Mohammad Amir Anwar (University of Edinburgh)
Michel Wahome (UCL)
Send message to Convenors
Economy and Development (x) Futures (y)
Neues Seminargebäude, Seminarraum 16
Saturday 3 June, -, -
Time zone: Europe/Berlin

Short Abstract:

African digital futures are not predestined but can be made and remade.This panel generate imaginaries of such futures, their materialities, actors, discourses, practices. Themes include but not limited to digital+..democracy, livelihoods, cultural production, environmental effects, social cohesion.

Long Abstract:

Grand narratives about digital technologies have painted both the utopian and dystopian African futures. These are best captured in the celebrated notions of Fourth Industrial Revolution or Artificial Intelligence for Development and the concerns and contestations that emerge from the interrogation of these ideas. The complex, grounded realities of such universalised visions force us to question whose digital futures are being created and what could be the likely outcomes. On the one hand, digital technology is expected to create fairer societies, advance UN Sustainable goals for Africa (e.g. poverty reduction, health care, literacy), but on the other hand, there are fears of the spread of misinformation, increased co-option into consumerist culture, widespread surveillance, and violations of various human rights. Still, African digital futures are not predetermined but can be made and remade.

In this session we anticipate the future where digital technologies are fully integrated into social life. There are no longer any prescriptions about how best these technologies can be used for development, no more calls to bridge digital divides, the fourth industrial revolution has come and gone, digital technologies are simply facts of life. If we project what we know now into the future, what use cases and issues can we imagine? We invite contributions that help generate imaginaries of African digital futures, their various materialities, actors, arenas, discourses, practices, and positionalities.

Some of the key themes include but are not limited to: digital+...democracy, livelihoods, cultural production, environmental effects, social cohesion.

Accepted papers:

Session 1 Saturday 3 June, 2023, -
Session 2 Saturday 3 June, 2023, -