General Musings iAdvocate Publications

My News and Views Roundup (2020-)

A curation of interviews, talks, op-eds by/featuring yours truly. Also, additional roundups on COVID-19 and for 2014-2019).


Five challenges with multistakeholder initiatives on AI (For the Carnegie Council’s AI and Equality Initiative, I wrote about the need to unpack the ‘multistakeholder approach’ to tech governance).

Digital (and) Diplomacy: What are we actually talking about? (I was invited to join this distinguished panel and share my experiences as a non diplomat, navigating the often conceptually unclear domain that is digital diplomacy. Specific contribution from the 1:30:00 minute mark).

Club de Madrid Global Commission: Delivering for Youth in Emergency Response and Recovery (I joined this session to share some thoughts on youth narratives, critiquing the obfsucation that underlies many an effort initiated in the name of ‘African youth’).

New Scholar Spotlight: Nanjira Sambuli (In which I outline what I will be focusing on as a Fellow in the Technology and International Affairs program at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace).

Expert interview on digitalisation in Africa (I’m not crazy about the platformisation of (Africa’s) digital economy. Yet, it’s happening. Shared my thoughts in this GIZ publication, to particularly contextualise digital transformation as is often imagined for Africa (p. 58)).

Decolonizing the Internet: How AI shapes our world. (In which I contribute to a conversation on how AI is shaping the ‘African internet experience’ and offer some thoughts on the critical lens we need to applying the (de)colonial language to digital technologies).

The Geopolitics of Digital Transformation (In which I speak to Körber-Stiftung on how competition for leadership in tech affects the global balance of power, and reflect on the Bergedof 175 roundtable).

Digital biases: The chimaera of equality and access (An essay I contributed for Raisina Files 2021, unpacking the layered divides that make equality in a digital age ever more elusive).

Technology, Philanthropy and Civil Society (I joined Charities Aid Foundation’s #GivingThought podcast on a wide-ranging conversation on digital civil society, power dynamics in the tech sector, the role of philantropy in tech and more).

A proposal for equitable health futures in a digital age (co-authored this piece for the Medicus Mundi Bulletin, along with fellow Governing Health Futures 2030 Commissioner, Prof Olivia Banner).

COVID-19, Technology and Platform Societies (I joined Kenya-based Elephant TV for a wide-ranging discussion on these topics).

Africa, Artificial Intelligence and Ethics (A webcast for the Carnegie Council’s AI and Equality Initiative on whose board I also serve).

Development and its Futures (The opening event for UNDP’s Istanbul Innovation Days; a uniquely designed session in which we bring artefacts from the futures we envision to the present).

Breaking through the bias in A.I. (An International Women’s Day commemoration in which I join phenomenal women in breaking down gendered AI bias – talent, AI decision-making and more).

Philanthropy and the Digital Revolution (a webinar in which I unpacked further my suggestions in the post 👇🏾; panel discussion commences at approx. 1 hr mark… ).

On the Patient Capital needed from Philanthropy in Tech. (In which I propose a path less travelled in tech investments; one that is suitable for philanthropy to take on).

Digital Health for Universal Health Coverage (In which I participate in a fireside chat at the Women in Tech 2021 conference discussing digital health, fast becoming a ‘hot’ topic).


For covid-19 contributions, check out Thinking in a time of corona.

#eSkills4Policymakers: From policy recommendations to policy action —Training policymakers on gender equality in ICT policy formulation. (A paper published by the ITU, and co-authored with my former Web Foundation colleagues, outlining the lessons learned from designing & implementing workshops to mainstream gender discourse in ICT policymaking ).

Artificial Intelligence and Governance (a podcast conversation with Goethe Institut-Kenya).

What does data extractivism mean for African development? (I joined a conversation with LSE students on the power dynamics underpinning ‘data for development’).

Accountability in the age of the algorithm: whose experiences matter? (panel discussion at the 2020 CDAC Network conference to discuss reimagining the role of digital technologies in humanitarianism).

AI and machine learning : The future of health data (webinar hosted by PATH with the highlight of having been an all-female panel!)

New era of digital and cyber alliances (Panel discussion at the EU Cyber Forum 2020)

The Work of Thinking (A conversation with the #KECreativesDeserveBetter organisers).

#DigitalDemocracyBuilders: A profile of my work by Citizen Lab

Connecting Digital Access and Youth Empowerment: A Pulse on the Principles (for Digital Development) podcast.

Taking on the Tech Titans: Reclaiming our Data Commons (webinar by the Transnational Institute)

TL;DR☝🏾 : I reflected on some strands, beyond technical aspects on how we take on ‘big tech’ and the urgency of international/institutionalised civil society to lead in walking the talk with respect to values like dignity, justice and diversity. I also point out some of the impracticalities for ‘marginalised majorities’ in the emerging alternatives and tactics to challenge the perverse ‘digital social contracts’ we find ourselves in.

Opening Talk: Latitude Digital Festival

I joined Nikhita Dawan and Souleymane Bachir Diagne for this timely discussion spanning the scope of the festival’s themes: 1)racism, identity and memory 2)economic and digital (in)equality 3) dealing with cultural artefacts and retribution.

Reimagining the Internet: Roadmaps to Digital Equality

I had the pleasure and honour of curating and moderating this panel (at the Latitude Digital Festival) of amazing women of colour working on this topic. (Proposed takeaway: creating a ‘new normal’ where non-male, non-western voices shape global discourses, without being pigeonholed into the narrow ‘global South discussions’ framing).

Feature TV Interview (for) Latitude Digital Festival

Simply complicated: On technological solutions in the global South.

Recalibrating our energy: Is all that glitters with digital technologies really climate action gold?

It Is Our Task to Ensure That Human Rights and Values Drive Digital Technologies (Interview with Bosch Stiftung)

Connecting the other 50 percent (Interview with GIZ)