New publication: Lessons for Africa from the 2020 Global Pandemic


New publication of a co-edited book from TIPC’s Rob Byrne, Chux Daniels and chair partners of the Trilateral Chair in Transformative Innovation (TRCTI), Erika Kraemer-Mbula, Rebecca Hanlin and Ann Kingiri on the valuable lessons for the African continent from the 2020 Global Pandemic.

This book was produced amidst an environment of uncertainty and constantly changing narratives surrounding COVID-19 and its effects. 

It encapsulates the transition towards a narrative of post-pandemic (rather than post-COVID-19) and emphasises the concept of “learning to live with the virus” in 2022. Societies in the global South have adopted this narrative to learn to navigate the harsh economic realities by looking at opportunities emerging in the digital and regional spaces. Some of these narratives are embedded within the different chapters of this book. 

This experience has highlighted the importance of innovative solutions and the pivotal role of the public sector. It has also raised a new interest in governance systems and structures, and ways to strengthen governance overall. Around the world, the pandemic has spurred countries to innovate and develop more resilient systems and strategies that will enable us to gain the capacity to tackle the complex challenges of today and the future. 

This book endeavours to help the African continent move on from the devastating impacts of the pandemic, biodiversity loss and climate change. It also provides examples of how governments can mitigate against such crises in the future by learning lessons from this pandemic. Additionally, this book examines case studies that demonstrate the numerous instances of resilience showcased by various African countries prior to the pandemic.

A key message from this book is the importance of new combinations of science, technology and innovation (STI) policy expertise and the need for more transformative STI policy. Furthermore, it highlights a necessity for policy discussions on STI to transcend the confines of traditional STI actors.  It also focuses on the need to acknowledge that STI is necessary to address developmental issues beyond the economic and the sustainable development goals. 

To read more, access the full publication here.