Internet technology in emerging markets has received far less attention but has major implications for economic growth and social progress. We recently studied the impact of the Internet on what we call “aspiring countries,” defined as having the economic size and dynamism to be significant players on the global stage in the near future and achieve levels of prosperity approaching those of the advanced economies. “Internet entrepreneurs in aspiring countries are often also social entrepreneurs, in that they create the ecosystem that allows individuals, enterprises, and governments to play a bigger role in the Internet economy.” According to Voices , Internet entrepreneurs in aspiring countries are often also social entrepreneurs, in that they create the ecosystem that al
It’s been four years since Microsoft launched its 4Afrika Initiative. The 4Afrika continues to deliver on its promise to develop affordable access, skills and innovation on the African continent. The 4Africa initiative has now joined forces with Wollo University and Tulane University to launch a new AppFactory Academy in Ethiopia . This initiative will enable the IT graduates and related computing discipline graduates at Ethiopia’s Wollo University to access a six-month internship, where they will work on real-world software development projects with senior software engineers. In a press release to Ventureburn, Microsoft 4Afrika said on completion of the internship graduates will be able to design, implement and deploy cloud-enabled, mobile and IT solutions in various sectors. T
A "solar revolution" is coming to Africa, comparable in scale and importance to the rapid surge in cellphone use on the continent two decades ago, predicts the head of the International Renewable Energy Agency (Irena). This is being accelerated by the fast-dropping costs for solar power, combined with plenty of sun in a continent that has more than half of it’s population not connected to electricity, meaning solar has huge potential in Africa. New reports show that Africa’s electricity problems continue to limit the continent with only 40% of Africans enjoying reliable power supply. The continent gets 117% more sunshine than Germany, which today has the highest installed solar power capacity. Both grid-connected solar power and off-grid solar energy now offer cost-competitive means to
The World Bank Group launched XL Africa, a five-month business acceleration program designed to support the 20 most promising digital start-ups from Sub-Saharan Africa. Start-ups will receive mentoring from global and local experts, learn through a tailor-made curriculum, increase their regional visibility, and get access to potential corporate partners and investors. With support from prominent African investment groups, XL Africa will help the 20 selected start-ups attract early stage capital between $250,000 and $1.5 million. The Vice President for the Africa Region at the World Bank says Digital start-ups are important drivers of innovation in Africa. To scale and spread new technologies and services beyond borders, they need an integrated ecosystem that provides access to regional m
How is innovation in Africa different from innovation in Silicon Valley? How can this kind of innovation in Africa be encouraged? The Africa Tech Summit is fast becoming the marquee technology event on the continent. It brings together more than 200 tech leaders, investors, entrepreneurs, governments, trade bodies, media and leading ventures to drive investment and business between Africa and Europe. Organised by Appsafrica, the summit aims to bring together leading tech companies, investors, and entrepreneurs to explore key sectors in the continent to drive investment and business between itself and the rest of the world. The fact that the African continent will have 700 million smartphones within five years is going to be game changing. From edu-tech to health-tech to ag-tech,...