Keynote Talk: AI at Africa's Crossroads: Extractive or Generative Future?


Ron Eglash
School of Information, University of Michigan


In African traditions, the crossroads is where the trickster makes his/her appearance. Eshu, Legba, Anansi and others create complexity when our decisions fold back on themselves. AI has created yet another crossroads, and again the trickster brings surprises. What might have seemed like Africa’s worst challenges-“underdeveloped” from the colonial perspective-could be the basis by which computational aids can facilitate more sustainable and egalitarian futures. Blending the heritage algorithms of Africa’s past with full stack decolonization can guide us through the crossroads, on the path towards generative justice.

February 17, 2024
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