Knowledge & Innovation in Africa: Scenarios for the Future

In this book, the authors trace the contours of knowledge and innovation in Africa from the founding civilisations to today’s current realities, and then set out the drivers of change that can be expected to shape innovation systems on the continent between now and the year 2035. The volume then offers three plausible scenarios – elements of which are likely to emerge in various settings on the continent in the short – to medium-term.

Each scenario raises different issues for control of, and access to, knowledge in Africa. Taken together, they focus on the trend of regional and international wireless engagement, the power of the continent’s informal economy, and the importance of traditional knowledge (TK) throughout Africa. The key insight for policymakers, business leaders, scholars and civil society in this publication is that the question is not whether intellectual property (IP) rights will be relevant in the future, but rather which rights will be most important in different scenarios.

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de Beer, Jeremy and Oguamanam, Chidi and Rizk, Nagla and Elahi, Shirin and Kawooya, Dick, Knowledge & Innovation in Africa: Scenarios for the Future (2013). S. Elahi and J. de Beer, with D. Kawooya, C. Oguamanam, N. Rizk, Knowledge & Innovation in Africa: Scenarios for the Future, (Cape Town: Open AIR, 2013).

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