Embracing the Fourth Industrial Revolution holds promise for Africa to become a digital hub
“With the fourth industrial revolution we can empower our organisations, develop new businesses and new revenue streams until we make Namibia and Africa the hub of digital transformation,” said Elizabeth Kamutuezu from the Ministry of Information and Communication Technology when she addressed a conference organised by the Association of Namibian German Alumni earlier in December.
The conference was funded by the German Embassy through the Science Diplomacy Fund and was attended by around 150 participants representing academia, private sector and the government.
Opening the conference, the new German Ambassador, HE Herbert Beck said Namibia needs to overcome challenges in building up competencies that will unlock the full value of the Fourth Industrial Revolution.
“Human computer interface, drone traffic management and nanotechnology are buzzwords that will shape the scientific technological future not only in the high-tech countries but also in Namibia. Germany is interested in further intensifying its cooperation with Namibia in this field as well,” he said.
Ambassador Beck commended the founders of alumni association, saying “We know that building and maintaining an active and effective network is one of the key factors for successful work. Therefore, we must have an interest in ensuring that talented men and women, regardless of where they come from and what nationality they have, can fully develop their intellectual and scientific potential. Science and technology are not only areas that are becoming increasingly important in our world but also fields in which cooperation between states and state institutions is expected.”
Professor Frednard Gideon, Pro-Vice Chancellor of Academic Affairs at the University of Namibia, contextualised the Fourth Industrial Revolution, highlighting the current and planned initiatives of the university in response to it.
Alumni association chairperson Rodney Seibeb noted that Namibia had been a mere spectator and a consumer of the previous industrial revolutions. “It is therefore important to have gatherings like these to see how we can position ourselves to benefit and to assess what is in store for the Namibian youth,” he said.
The two-day conference covered aspects of human computer interface, crypto currencies, the usage of drones for traffic management as well as the implications of the fourth industrial revolution for technical and vocational education and training.
The Association of Namibian German Alumni strives to strengthen academic, professional, business and cultural cooperation among Namibian, Namibian-based and German Alumni.