New talent shaping the information society
Africa is in the process of joining the information society, but can it also be a powerful force in shaping it? With the rise of China as an economic superpower we have seen the rise of the Chinese Internet. Now more pages are published in Chinese than any other language in the world. Most importantly, the Internet space in China is not the same as seen elsewhere. They have created their own version that meets the needs of their own culture. Can and will Africa do the same?
Will the continent remain a simple consumer, digesting millions of mobile phones and burning billions of minutes, or can it also produce its own technologies? How will Africa join the global village and contribute to both its local and international development? How is this process reflected in the rise of local industries and what do they look like? Is this part of the same culture seen elsewhere or does it have unique traits and character? Who are the individuals shaping this process and what is their vision for the future? What does this mean for the development of the continent and the information society as a whole?
More specifically, my research focuses on emerging software culture in Africa’s greatest cities. I spend considerable time with young programmers and entrepreneurs working to develop platforms, applications and software services. The aim is to understand this process from the bottom up, to embed myself amongst the members of this community and to learn from their perspective. I also look at the structures of different organizational approaches and compare them. I place my work in a larger context in which software culture acts as an important agent in the development of a true African information society.
See my 2009 research: Rise of Bukoto St. and the emergence of software culture in Kampala, Uganda
East Africa, Uganda, Kampala, Kenya, Nairobi, Information Society, Information Services, Software, Application, Programming, Code, ICT, Internet, Computer, Mobile, Developer, Entrepreneur, Incubation, Start up, Venture Capital.
If you have thoughts, questions, ideas or contacts please feel free to contact me!
See an article calling for more research:
Lack of research widening digital divide, Uganda ICT minister says