AFRIDIC

The African Development Informatics Conference is a platform for academics, practitioners and other stakeholders in ICT4D to showcase their research findings or innovations. ICT4D (Information and Communications Technologies for Development), in its broad sense, includes initiatives aimed at bridging the digital divide and aiding economic development by ensuring equitable access to up-to-date communications technologies. It also includes ICT-led interventions towards the attainment of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)

Background

With the adoption of the Sustainable Development Goals, the world has positioned itself in improving the livelihoods of people mainly in developing countries. That can hardly be achieved without the production, dissemination, adoption and use of knowledge. Research and Innovation are key enablers of that production, dissemination, adoption and use of Knowledge for the achievement of the sustainable development goal (SDG). As argued by Mukerji & Chauhan (2020, p1), “Academic conferences play an important role in creation, consolidation and dissemination of knowledge in emerging areas of research.” They shape the evolution of any research area or a discipline by contributing towards building a shared understanding of domain (Lanamäki & Persson, 2016). Such academic conferences are hence needed for the achievement of the SDG.

Information and Communication Technology for Development (ICT4D) tools and services, also known as Development Informatics, represents one of the key domains for the achievement of the SDG. ICT4D tools such as Mobile phones are close to ubiquitous in developing countries; Internet and broadband access are becoming commonplace (Heeks, 2018). Hence, ICT4D tools and services are considered as the fastest, broadest and deepest technical change experienced in international development. They have an effect (and impact) on every development sector – supporting the work of hundreds of millions of farmers and micro-entrepreneurs; creating millions of ICT-based jobs; assisting healthcare workers and teachers; facilitating political change; impacting climate change; but also linked with digital inequalities and harms – with the pace of change continuously accelerating (Heeks, 2018; Heeks & Krishna, 2016; Imran et al., 2016).