Photo credit: re:publica/Gregor Fischer
Politics & Society
Reflections on the change of societies and political dynamics due to digitization are at the core of the re:publica programme. We are interested in shifting power balances, in societal change and civic digital action. At re:publica we want to talk about what we need to do for a free and open Internet and its relation to the shifting political paradigms on the continent. We want to explore the intersections of technology with politics and society.
In this track we will discuss surveillance technologies, data and privacy protection, e-privacy, Internet shutdowns and net neutrality. We will look at community networks, the effects of AI on society, digital disobedience, as well as new governance models aided by digital technologies.
We invite activists, civil society representatives, researchers and all persons with experience in these topics to help us examine the interplay of technology and society on a philosophical level as well as on the day-to-day basis. We’ll explore the opportunities of civic tech and debate the state of Internet freedom - based on your contributions. Questions we would like to see tackled e.g. include: How do social media platforms influence the shaping of political opinions? How are movements and communities for Internet freedom, digital democracy and open data developing? What social and legislative processes should be initiated to regulate an ever accelerating automation? Can the blockchain deliver on its promise of revolutionizing governance processes?
- Politics & Society-Meet the founder of iAfrikan and the founder of netzpolitik.org and re:publica and ask them anything!
- Politics & SocietyAccess-In an age where access to the internet is deemed a human right, continued shutdowns are more harmful than they are helpful. Africa internet shutdowns are second only to Asia, buoyed by a desire to silence popular voices, quell protests and “maintain order”.
- Politics & SocietyAccess-The value of being connected to a communication network is steadily rising. And yet, half of the world population remains unconnected to the Internet. Existing network operators are showing signs of having reached their limits in terms of connected the unserved. Steve Song argues that if we are going to connect *everyone* affordably, we need to change the way we think about the problem.
- Politics & Society-The Internet has become a powerful tool for activists around the world to mobilize and organize communities for social and political change. Last year in Togo, hundreds of thousands of citizens took on the streets to protest for change. The government responded by shutting down the internet completely for several days. This session will discuss how Internet has helped citizens organize for democracy in Togo and how activists are fighting to preserve and expand the digital space.
- Politics & SocietyData-The session will discuss the African Union Convention on Cyber Security and Personal Data Protection accepted by African Union Heads of Sates and Government at Malabo in June 2014 emphasizes the importance of every African Union member state establishing a legal framework aimed at strengthening fundamental rights, particularly the protection of physical data and remedies for any violation of privacy without prejudice to the principle of free flow of personal data.
- Politics & SocietyTech for Good-How transparent is the use of public funds? Governments are expected to deliver services of good quality. But how to ensure that tax payers money or donor funds are really used in the expected way? TruBudget is a blockchain-based software which can serve as a platform to track and coordinate the implementation of public investments. By promoting trust, TruBudget could make public budgets transparent and efficient. TruBudget is open source and may be used for various business cases.
- Politics & Society-In this session Nanjira Sambuli will interview Boniface Mwangi, who ran for Parliament in Kenya in 2017 and Kudzai M Mubaiwa who ran for council in Zimbabwe this year. We will learn about both candidate’s personal journey and motivation and how they have been trying to hack the political system in Kenya and Zimbabwe, through art, public protest and hashtags.
- Politics & SocietyFemaleGot an idea for a change you want to see in your community concerning women and girls? Tell us during re:publica Accra! During our mobile campaign, we will scout the venue and approach you to raise your hand to a cause you believe in. Be part of the coolest digital visual album during re:publica and win some amazing SWAG as well.
- Politics & Society-Technological process is often sold as a shortcut to social stability, full employement and an improved public infrastructure. But is it really? Technology is not and cannot be a panacea for problems that societies, communities and their leaders choose not to fix.
- Politics & SocietyAccess-This session is going to address the most underlying issue regarding digitization in Africa: Access to the Internet. Data affordability is the main barrier for people using the Internet. Today, zero rating services are often marketed as the only way to provide free access to Internet services.
- Politics & Society-In this session Mukudzei (Magamba TV) & Kubolor (Fokn Bois) will show and discuss how they use art and satire for social commentary, in different contexts in Zimbabwe and Ghana. Discussing artistic expression, connected discourses, challenges and new ideas - the session will make you laugh, think and question.