Les Dépêches de Brazzaville (LDB): You regularly publish the results of your research on the development of digital technologies in French-speaking Africa. How do you assess the topic proposed by the JNDA? “Leveraging Digital Growth in Africa”?
Ms Alain Kiyindou (Ms AK): I have published many books analyzing the link between digital and development, and I have always emphasized the fact that digital is a real lever for development, shared by many international institutions. In addition, the African Union states that « digitalisation creates jobs, fights poverty, reduces inequalities, facilitates the supply of goods and services and contributes to Agenda 2063 and the Sustainable Development Goals. “
The JNDA system allows me to share my many years of experience as a digital specialist and the knowledge gained from numerous digital development evaluation reports in various African countries.
The idea I often defend is the need to move towards national policies, sub-regional or even regional policies, or at least harmonization, because, as you know, the digital problem is a global phenomenon that transcends borders. For example, we cannot stop the scourge of cybercrime by national means alone. The second idea I intend to develop is that Africa needs to start fully developing advanced digital technologies.
This means thinking about the development of data, computer infrastructure and, above all, skills, especially artificial intelligence. In any case, the diaspora has an important role to play: mediator, but also vigilant, as it is in two spaces and can better compare and understand key orientations.
LDB: How are you taking steps to promote digital practices in Congo, your country of origin?
Pr AK: Congo is the country that created me, shaped me, in short, made me the kind of expert I am. Sure, it’s hard to be a pope at home, but we always keep gratitude for the country that shaped us. It may seem pretentious to show what we are doing, but it would not be an exaggeration to say that I could always give my expertise whenever I needed it.
For example, next month I will be attending the Osian International Trade Fair in Brazzaville, where the digital issue will be discussed again. The most important struggle is teaching, and I admit that I am disappointed that the Marien-Ngouabi University authorities did not accept the cooperation project proposed by the University of Bordeaux Montaigne, in particular by awarding a double degree that could have allowed some of our students to continue their studies at Bordeaux Montaigne.
The difficulties we have encountered in implementing this project, which we have been able to accept at the University of Bordeaux in Montaigne, remain incomprehensible to me, but it has not affected my desire to continue to contribute to the education of our young compatriots, mainly the digital domain.
Following the coordination of UNESCO’s assessment of Internet universality indicators in Benin, Nigeria and Côte d’Ivoire, I proposed that Congo be added to the list of other countries that will benefit from the system in place. place. If this project is implemented, it will be an opportunity to diagnose the development of digital technology in Congo and to start a real consultation on what we want to do with this tool, because digital technology is a problem, a challenge, but also a challenge. risk.
LDB: What is your news?
Pr AK: My news is this wonderful work on digital assessment in Côte d’Ivoire, which we are doing with the support of the Minister of Digital Economy, Telecommunications and Innovation and this investment in the promotion of artificial intelligence in Africa.
With the establishment of the African Artificial Intelligence Research Center, Congo has distinguished itself as a pioneer in this field, and I can only be proud of that, as I am constantly emphasizing all the benefits that Africa can derive from this technology.
It is in this context that 2 April. We will hold an exclusive presentation session in Paris, “Artificial Intelligence, Contribution and Challenges for Africa”, published by Editions Plus.
The specifics of this work are to cross the views of researchers, institutions and professionals in the field of artificial intelligence. Therefore, we will take the opportunity to present this work and discuss this very important issue with the public.
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