How the African Centre for Competitive Intelligence (ACCI) works for the successful adoption of AI in Africa

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[ACCI-CAVIE] The ACCI, during the 7th edition of the African Competitive Intelligence Days, will officially embrace artificial intelligence (AI) and become its main promoter on the continent. Popularizing AI is a lengthy and complex process, but the ACCI has the means, the legitimacy, and is determined to achieve this objective, due to the strategic nature of the matter.

Dr Guy GWETH, President of the ACCI, has decided to systematically integrate AI into all training programs of the Centre, fully embracing enhanced competitive intelligence. Six other categories of actions are being undertaken to ensure the successful adoption of AI in Africa:

The ACCI advocates for strengthening digital infrastructure

Recognizing the associated infrastructural constraints, the Centre actively advocates for improved access to electricity, high-speed internet, 5G, and reliable and affordable digital infrastructure in general. These factors are crucial for the optimal development of AI on the African continent.

The ACCI works towards developing AI skills in Africa

In elite higher educational institutions such as Saint Jean l’Ingénieur in Yaoundé, the Centre contributes to training engineers, data scientists, and AI experts. Additionally, the ACCI incorporates AI education into its certification programs, while awaiting the creation of AI research centres.

The ACCI encourages research and innovation across the continent

To the extent of its capabilities, the Centre supports research projects applying AI to solving African issues. The ACCI’s radar helps identify funding opportunities for start-ups and entrepreneurs developing AI solutions. Its team of consulting experts contribute to the creation of incubators and co-working spaces for AI start-ups.

The ACCI advocates for a favourable regulatory environment

Among its advocacy priorities, the Centre promotes the implementation of laws and regulations that encourage innovation while protecting data and privacy on the African continent. The ACCI analysts believe that promoting a conducive legal framework for AI in various sectors and raising awareness among policymakers on the importance of AI are essential for successful penetration.

The ACCI contributes to mobilizing public and private funding

The Centre encourages investments in AI development in Africa through both public and private funds. The ACCI works to attract foreign investors to the AI sector. The Centre’s consulting experts help to create funding mechanisms for start-ups and AI research projects.

The ACCI promotes collaboration and knowledge sharing

Finally, the Centre encourages collaboration among public, private, and research actors. It urges its partners to establish platforms for knowledge and expertise sharing in AI. The ACCI now organizes conferences and workshops to raise public awareness about AI. An example is the upcoming 7th edition of the African Competitive Intelligence Days (JAIE2024), which will take place on 30 and 31 May 2024, in Yaoundé, Cameroon, under the theme “The Contribution of Artificial Intelligence to the Performance of African Public and Private Players.”

In brief…

The adoption of artificial intelligence by Africans is a major and achievable medium term challenge. According to the ACCI, AI has the potential to transform Africa and set it on the path of sustainable and inclusive development. By addressing key obstacles and taking action in favour of appropriate policies and initiatives, the continent can leverage AI to boost its economic growth and social development. Dr Guy GWETH strongly emphasizes that “the ACCI will ensure that the development of AI on the African continent is ethical and responsible, because it is crucial to ensure that it does not further exacerbate existing inequalities or harm the well-being of African populations.”

The Editor