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Africa’s solarized digitalization agenda in the time of coronavirus

The COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted the necessity for the digitalization and sustainable development of African economies.
The seventh session of the Africa Regional Forum on Sustainable Development convened earlier this month with the theme “Building forward better: Towards a resilient and green Africa to achieve the 2030 Agenda and Agenda 2063” and to promote the economic, social and environmental dimensions of sustainable development.Amina Mohammed, deputy secretary-general of the United Nations, pointed out that developing a just, fair economic model that embraces green and renewable energy, resilient infrastructure, and digitalization — while protecting natural resources by broadening partnerships for science, technology and innovation — could unleash the region’s green potential and fuel economic transformation. UNECA’s digital agendaAccording to a paper titled “Harnessing Emerging Technologies: the cases of Artificial Intelligence and Nanotechnology,” which was provided by Victor Konde — scientific affairs officer at the United Nations: “The global pandemic caused by [COVID-19] has highlighted the importance of technology and innovation in developed countries. […] Digital technologies have transformed how people work, interact and access services.” It also highlights the “interest in the role of emerging technologies in driving Africa’s transformation” and in achieving the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals.As the document states, the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa, or UNECA, conducted profound policy research and “provided policy advice to member States on several emerging technologies, such as blockchain, artificial intelligence and nanotechnology.” The paper continues:“The digital economy is unpinned by several key technologies, some of which include artificial intelligence (AI), cloud …
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