- CyFy Africa, 2018: The Conference on Technology, Innovation and Society
- May 11 2018
Observer Research Foundation has the pleasure of partnering with The Regional Council of Tangier-Tetouan-Al Hoceima and The Ministry of Industry, Investment, Trade and Digital Economy, Kingdom of Morocco, to convene the inaugural edition of CyFy Africa as a gathering on Technology, Innovation and Society in association with Observer Research Foundation, New Delhi, India. With the auspicious blessings of his majesty, King Mohammed the sixth, we are certain that the debates that we have here will usher in change that is progressive in its vision and enduring it is influence.
Read the address by ORF Chairman Sunjoy Joshi here.
Read the address by ORF President Samir Saran here.
CyFy was launched in 2013 just as the transformative potential of digital technologies in governance was first starting to unfold. As India’s most successful technology platform, CyFy has brought together governments, technology giants and local communities to discuss how this potential can benefit our societies. Over the past five years, the importance of these debates and CyFy has only grown.
Simultaneously, there has been a realisation that the voices and aspirations of the emerging world in the technology and innovation space remain unfulfilled. Over the next two days, nearly 150 speakers and delegates with many other attendees will gather here in Tangier to correct this disparity, and will help shape the conversations on technology that will define our communities in the near future.
Alongside the economic opportunity of cyberspace and critical issues of privacy and inclusive access, we will discuss how Asia and Africa will rely on artificial intelligence and robotics to reshape their societies. It is our ambition that the conversations that take place over the next two days will catalyse normative propositions that take into consideration diversity — of cultures, capabilities and demographics.
We are happy to note, that of the 40 countries represented here at CyFy, a majority of them belong to developing nations from Asia and Africa.
We will discuss how the private sector and civil society can collaborate with governments in Asia and Africa to provide universal digital access. Towards this end, nearly half of all participants here today belong to the private sector, a quarter come from civil society, academia and press, and key government representatives make up almost twenty percent.
To ensure that the security risks emerging from new technologies do not disrupt their potential, we have brought together global technology companies, leading international institutions and security practitioners to ideate solutions for cybersecurity.
We will address how innovation led economies must create new opportunities for our burgeoning young. CyFy is especially conscious that innovation and economic growth must also benefit women and marginalized sections of the society. More than 40 percent of all speakers and delegates here today are under the age of 35 and a similar percentage are women – many of whom have either founded their own ventures, or occupy key leadership positions in the technology sector.
At a time when technology is at the centre of political upheavals, platforms like CyFy help us take stock of the challenges, explore new ideas, shape progressive narratives and ultimately leverage digital opportunities to build strong and resilient communities. We look forward to rich discussions on these vital issues.
Speaking on the eve of the event, Dr. Samir Saran, President ORF and Chair of the CyFy, hailed the diversity of participation at the conference and the confluence of expertise from the emerging world and from the shores of the Atlantic. The engagements at the conference will foster cooperation and create a network of experts who will drive technology focussed solutions in the future. Mr. Sunjoy Joshi, Chairman ORF expressed his delight at this new and promising partnership which is the first step towards breaking new ground in Afro-Asian cooperation. He further stated that it has been ORF’s endeavour to foster global platforms that will respond to the challenges and opportunities of the 21st Century.
The event is curated by Ms. Danielle Kaymebe, Ms. Megan Cress, Ms. Sonali Mittra and Mr. Bedavyasa Mohanty each of whom are deeply engaged with technology and technology policy.