THE FIRST AI4D IMPLEMENTATION COMMITTEE WORKSHOP
The first implementation Committee Workshop was held in Somone, Senegal, from 29th November 2022 to 1st December 2022 at the Royal Horizon Baobab Hotel. The workshop received many participants from African projects of Anglophone to Francophone regions funded by the IDRC and Sida under the AI4D Africa program. The International Development Research Centre (IDRC) invests in knowledge, innovation, and solutions to improve the lives of people in the developing world and Sida is the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency under the Swedish Ministry for Foreign Affairs. The workshop was mainly organized by the Canada-based organization, known as FDR; FDR is a research, evaluation, training, and data/knowledge management social enterprise.
Tanzania’s “AI4D Africa’s Anglophone Multidisciplinary Research Lab” Project was represented by its Principal Investigator (PI), Dr. Ally Nyamawe, and Co-PI, Prof Shubi Kaijage. This project is a collaboration between two public academic institutions in Tanzania, i.e., the University of Dodoma (UDOM) and Nelson Mandela African Institution of Science and Technology (NM
AIST); aimed to establish a multidisciplinary AI4D laboratory that fosters research, training, innovation, and internationalization. The lab will bring together academia, industries, and public institutions in Africa to develop research-based AI solutions that can contribute to addressing societal challenges in an equitable and gender-responsive manner.
Mainly, the workshop aimed to lay the foundations for the collective development of a medium and long-term future of the AI4D Africa program. Moreover, the workshop focused to increase collaboration across AI4D Africa and impart partners with a better understanding of the AI4D program and its position in it. During the workshop, members were taken into a deeper understanding of potential futures within which AI4D Africa is operating followed by the dynamic session on the future for AI4D, refining the AI4D scenarios and uncovering the root causes of the future, AI in Africa 2050. The participants in workgroups had to define several categories concerning the AI, say present conditions, future conditions, what needs to be changed, what is already happening, and which essential features need to be kept for the future.
Moreover, the workshop designed the AI4D Africa Phase II, by collaboratively laying the groundwork for the development of a proposal for phase II. The participants were made to work in sessions that built the collaborative vision of AI4D Africa 2030.
Then the session was concluded by several invited organizations sharing information and updates on AI4D African initiatives and activities before each participant narrated how their thinking has been changed from interactive workshop sessions of 3 days.