EndCode will actively pursue an African agenda in tech law and policy development at
national, regional and international levels to increase the benefits of technology and
innovation on the continent. EndCode is Africa’s rising against technology, innovation and
intellectual property policies that negatively impact the continent’s ability to extract the
benefits of emerging ICT centred economies.
A few years back I spent some time in Geneva attending meetings for a project I was working on. At one such meeting, the lack of co-ordination amongst African countries potentially meant our exclusion (in a meaningful way) from the last 2 days of a five day meeting. My discontent with a reality of the omission of the African perspective and agenda on the particular issue resulted in my later work co-ordinating ICT policy input amongst
African countries, lobbying officials at international organisations for greater inclusion in key
fora and pursuing an understanding of causes and implications of limited African participation in ICT and IP oriented policy development. Challenges included limited availability of data to support certain positions, limited co-ordination by participants at national and regional levels as well as the unavailability of legal and policy professionals in the associated fields.
I have also been requested over the years to put forward and represent the African position
at several international meetings on policy issues related to cybersecurity, access to
information, data protection, privacy, electronic government etc. I find that I often lack the
confidence in expressing what position would benefit African constituents.
Of course, there is no single or common position. The needs of the constituents are
complex. The legal and policy challenges associated with ICTs in particular as well as other
emerging technologies, however, need to be explored. Moreover, the opportunities brought
by policy reform that promote innovation systems at the country level, import and export of
strategic technologies and ultimately secure access to technologies that can improve the
lives of people on the continent need to be interrogated. Any person given the platforms that
I have in the future should be better informed, more confident and making the most of such
opportunities for positive influence.
Getting there is not a desktop research project and not simply achieved. The understanding
required will rely on deep and meaningful engagement across diverse and distributed
constituencies, building libraries of integrous and accessible data as well as increasing the
availability of professionals in the area.
EndCode will therefore, be an opportunity to continue my currently informal work in tech law
and policy and grow the understanding required to formulate and convey an African agenda
in tech law and policy development.
It seeks to change the world by pursuing the following:
-Network: Generating an engaged network of policy stakeholders to pursue an African
agenda in tech and innovation law and policy development at national, regional and
-Knowledge: Generating a knowledge base that confidently expresses the issues of African
constituents related to emerging tech and innovation law and policy development.
-Advisory: Establishing a respected advisory firm of African tech law and policy
professionals that monitor tech and innovation legal and policy landscapes on the continent
and advise clients.
The change in the world will be African constituents extracting greater benefits from tech and
innovation opportunities that will contribute to a better quality of life for African citizens.
A successful social entrepreneur speaking to me amongst a larger audience associated
purpose with that burning voice telling you something needed to be done and that you were
in a unique position to deliver an intervention. Of course, the work of EndCode is necessary.
This is plain. I find myself however, after 10 years of activity and an array of local and
international, academic; advisory; research; steering committee and working group positions
in a strategic locus- suited to coordinate the inputs of a diverse set of views including
industry stakeholders, policy professionals and regulators across several African countries.
This compels me to take advantage of the opportunity to build influential and engaged
networks that formulate and pursue an African agenda in technology and innovation policy.
EndCode by its nature and design, however, will extend well beyond me, as will its purpose and influence. My deep seated love for my Africa and burning aspiration to contribute to the
greater socio-economic opportunities offered to the continent by emerging technologies, will,
I believe, merely initiate what it will eventually become.