Stakeholders to discuss making data a regular conversation

Monday February 22 2021

48.2m: The number of Internet users across East Africa. PHOTO/FILE.

By Justus Lyatuu

Data scientists, technologists, designers, government, civil society, business and content marketers will on April 29 and 30 hold a meeting in which they will seek to connect and explore opportunities for collaboration in the data economy.

The meeting, which will be held under DataFest Kampala, will focus on exploring the role of data in navigating everyday lives. 
DataFest is an international community event that brings together hundreds stakeholders. 

Speaking at the launch of the fest in Kampala, Mr Phillip Ayazika, the programmes manager at Pollicy, a civic technology organization, said the fest will highlight the evident nature of data in our everyday lives ranging from travel, banking and communicating, among others. 

“For the past year, most of us moved to the Internet for our interactions at work, purchases, entertainment and education. A lot of people’s data has been collected, so we need to have the discussion about it,” he said.

Data continues to be embedded in every daily lives, having both subtle and drastic impact. 

Africa has been growing as a hub for data harvesting and mining, with an ever-expanding data-dependent startup sector, especially in Fintech, mobile, delivery, and transportation spaces.


As of 2020, East Africa boasted of 48.2 million Internet users, a figure which is expected to rise, as demonstrated by the average growth rates of 3.2 per cent for Uganda and Tanzania, and 16 per cent for Kenya.

There is a need to broaden the discourse on the positive and negative impact of data to better understand key emerging areas such as machine learning, data governance, digital security and artificial intelligence, and the role that these technologies play in even our most mundane engagements.