As we stand at the threshold of the generative AI revolution, it will be critical to take early steps to harness the power of AI to improve economic capabilities for regions like Sub-Saharan Africa. AI will be critical to Africa’s future socio-economic growth, enabling current and future generations of Africans to live in a more prosperous, healthy, secure, and sustainable world.
AI is expected to enhance productivity and job outcomes across a wide variety of Africa’s sectors, while also improving creative processes and generating new leapfrogging opportunities. Sectors such as agriculture, retail, and manufacturing have the potential to move up the value chain as companies begin to produce more complex and valuable products and services enabled by AI. Workers themselves would also benefit from having mundane tasks automated, leaving them with more time for other exciting and essential work.
Despite these promises, there has been limited research focused on Africa regarding several key AI-related topics, creating a need to conduct deeper research to understand the local impact and inform decision-making.
Access Partnership is proud to present a working paper to take stock of what we currently know (and don’t know) about the potential societal and economic impacts of AI in Africa and provide the foundation for a discussion with key stakeholders across the government and business sectors to chart the way forward. This paper covers the potential benefits of AI for Africa, myths and risks associated with AI, and brings together ideas into a concrete set of policies and actions African governments could consider to drive broader adoption of responsible AI.
We invite thoughts from readers as we continue to build a deeper analysis of the opportunities and challenges for AI in Africa.
Please access the report here.