Paradigm Initiative builds ICT-enabled support systems and advocates for digital rights in Africa.
Paradigm Initiative (PIN) has produced an annual report on the status of digital rights in Africa since 2016, and from 2019, the report is now complemented by a short film. The report focuses on technology policy on the continent and how citizens – especially, marginalized groups – navigate the climate of fear created by governments. With a specific focus on one of these groups, PIN led research on the digital gender gap in Nigeria in 2017, engaging policymakers on an action plan to close the ICT gender gap. The Feminist AI Research project presents an opportunity for us to bring these two research streams together to explore the impact of Artificial Intelligence on under-represented groups across African countries, with a specific focus on how policy proposals impact their lived experience. PIN’s work will look at bias in new technologies and how citizens can engage with policy processes that would deepen bias without the caution of various stakeholders.
A digitally inclusive community is imperative for sustainable development, equity and prosperity across Africa and as conversations around AI become increasingly embedded in all areas of life, governance and the economy, bias, inequalities and challenges persist. Underserved communities continue to be neglected as a result of the absence of models with low/no entry barriers that empower them with participation opportunities. With Paradigm Initiative’s programs, we seek to ensure digital inclusion and protect digital rights across Africa by connecting underserved youth to digital opportunities, promoting a positive rights environment and supporting public policy towards Internet Freedom in Africa. We will build on this to support advocacy around rights and inclusion as AI debates – and targeted policy proposals – continue in Africa.