This infographic poster, produced for the 2019 Transformative Innovation Policy Conference, demonstrates the partnership between the University of Johannesburg (South Africa), the University of Sussex, and the African Centre for Technology Studies in Kenya. It started in mid 2019 and has unfolded over an initial period of five years.
Taking centre stage in global debates, the rapid and converging technological advances comprising the fourth industrial revolution (4 IR) are widely expected to accelerate transformations in our production, consumption and social systems. Although these changes will be unprecedented, their direction remains uncertain. If not carefully steered, the 4 IR could exacerbate existing social challenges. In this respect, the challenges faced by African nations are considered greater than those faced by the technologically advanced countries.
Inventor of the concept, Klaus Schwab, listed 23 shifts comprising the 4 IR. Although these shifts identify areas of disruption, they offer no assessment of the impact on sustainable development, which must incorporate the thorough integration of both social and environmental sustainability if we are to achieve the transformative ambitions of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). This research project examines the 4IR through this lens applying a TIP perspective.