Open AIR participated in and hosted a number of events in 2020, the majority virtual of course. The highlight was the 2020 We Robot conference, an annual international event hosted on this occasion by Open AIR’s Canada hub, the uOttawa Centre for Law, Technology and Society. Open AIR was honoured to receive the award for best paper, for “Narratives of AI in a Gendered and Racialized World: Emergence on the African Continent” by Laura Foster, Bram Van Wiele and Tobias Schonwetter. This was the first time that the We Robot conference was held outside the United States and it was the first to include voices from developing countries, in both Africa and South America.
In addition, in May 2020, Open AIR Steering Committee member Caroline Ncube spoke, alongside the AfCFTA Secretary General, on a panel about how AfCFTA could stimulate an inclusive and developmental post-COVID-19 economic revival. This was an honour, and an important opportunity to highlight intellectual property matters in the context of the AfCFTA.
Also, our Egypt hub A2K4D hosted its Tenth Annual Workshop, our Kenyan hub CIPIT started a podcast, and a number of our NERGs and QES Fellows presented at conferences around the world. These are just some of the network’s achievements over the past 18 months.
Following is a small selection of the nearly 50 events of various kinds in which Open AIR network members have participated during the reporting period.
Bontle Monnya, Caroline Wanjiru Muchiri, Nan Warner and Farah Ghazal
A2K4D Tenth Annual Workshop: Beyond Covid-19: Data, AI and the Future of Work – Global Issues and Local Challenges, Webinar 3: “New Technologies and Open Innovation: The Voice of Young African Scholars”
Caroline Ncube & Chijioke Okorie
World IP Day 2020 Podcast “Green Innovation and IP in Africa”
Thomas Mboa Nkoudou
Science ouverte & la décolonisation des savoirs: Afrique-Haïti
Thomas Mboa Nkoudou & Chris Armstrong
Africa Makerspace Virtual Gathering 2020 participants: “The Role of Makerspaces in Addressing COVID-19″
Dianah Ajuna Byaruhanga
EU: Africa – The Post Crisis Journey panel: “Cybersecurity”