Africa, Technology & Global Development
We should now consider why African countries must invest in science and technology, how science creates wealth, and what Africa must do to achieve this “new liberation” – using its untapped natural wealth, human resources, and effective policy execution to create explosive wealth that by-passes western-led globalization and creates national and continental technology hubs. This is what will reposition Africa– with advantage – in the phenomenon of globalization
The secret that lies behind science and the prosperity of nations is simple but profound: ideas matter … This is the most important secret of the wealth of the industrialized world. And the constant pursuit of the economic and military advantage and superiority which scientific invention and technology confer is an essential component of a world-view that changes the realities on the ground.
Africa has fallen behind because its people, despite their historical abilities in science, have not done this in an organized manner. Remember Egypt, the Pyramids and all the science behind them..? The more the western world was able to invent and innovate in the past 300 years, the more “civilised” it became. And as Africa, in comparison, remained closer to nature and was dominated by natural phenomena, the more “primitive” and backward the continent seemed. Point in question is when Politicians think of maintaining grip on power to the social and economic detriment of the masses. Examples are plenty..Look at Zimbabwe, they have a genius technology mogul but not welcome in his homeland despite employing hundreds and directly contributing into the economy basket through his company Econet. He recently had other nations welcoming his Pay-TV business but shunned in his homeland. In Cameron the Northern Anglophone part has had no internet for more than a month. Think of business income lost, students in Science, Technology and invention affected and of cause families split as there isn’t any communication. In Kenya one can only marvel at the growth of banking outside the brick and mortar walls as banking was made accessible through cellphone technology supported by government in the form of M-Persa. The point is if we really apply ourselves, We as a people can actually do it and take Africa forward. Another classic example is the growth of Mukuru money transfers across African borders and Eco-cash within the cash strapped Zimbabwean economy. the point I am alluding to is the fact that with the support from government in form of favorable policies the African mind can compete anywhere in the world and surely can make Africa “global”
Western science led to the invention of gunpowder and other superior military weapons that outclassed bows, arrows and spears. Combined with the development of shipping transportation, the west became intrepid explorers of the world, developed a world-view of racial superiority, which led it to achieve military and economic conquests that resulted in transatlantic slavery and colonialism.
Evil as that epoch may have been, it was the product of world-views – world-views that were based on, and achieved because of science and technology. Asia has learned and applied the same lesson to economics, and its rising wealth is the result.
It is difficult now to imagine life without electricity, refrigerators, cars, telephones, air-conditioners, railways, dishwashers, and many other everyday appliances that make life in the modern era convenient, comfortable, and more economically productive. But for millions of Africans, life without these inventions and the innovations based on them is still their daily reality. And that reality often is nasty, brutish and short. Science, technology and innovation can turn their destiny around – and should …Surely imagine years into attaining independence from Colonial master some of our kith and kin lead such lives devoid of electricity, proper brick and mortar schools and clinics, running tap water and YES…. Cellular signal!!! WE NEED THAT AS A TECHNOLOGY GENERATION…CANT EMPHASIZE ENOUGH THE IMPORTANCE THEREOF…
African countries need to make technology and innovation a strategic priority from the standpoint of a world-view that Africa can invent and innovate, and must do so in order to liberate itself from the oppressive dominance of globalization. Why not manufacture its own mobile phones or innovate based on the original cell phone? In doing so, African countries need to understand that there really is no such thing as “transfer of technology”. No nation will willingly transfer its technological know-how to others because that knowledge is the basis of competitive advantage. Infact look at all foreign investors when they leave our shores, the companies they leave behind falter as they take the critical skills with them. More African countries are hoodwinked as well by the new buzz word “skills Transfer”, this is when a company operates on your shores and promises to up the skills bases of native people so as to make sure they can be self reliant but alas they don’t tell us everything and actually they teach us a lot of irrelevant stuff. Industrial nations can at best give a developing country a shallow surface insight into their know-how, and even then only in the context of foreign investment deals in which developed countries that host foreign direct investment inflows skillfully negotiate and secure such agreements, and have skilled workforces to absorb and expand on such prowess.
According to President Goodluck Jonathan, there is “nowhere in this world now you can move your economy without science and technology
Till we get the basic rights ,we still along long way!!! Technology will always evolve and Africa will always lag behind…Sad but its TRUE