February 10, 2023

African Talent: The Next Global Frontier

As the world becomes increasingly reliant on data and technology, the demand for skilled data scientists is on the rise. While the demand for these skills is global, a new player is emerging on the scene: Africa. With its rapidly growing population, young and educated workforce, and thriving tech industry, Africa is quickly becoming a hub for data science talent.

A young and educated workforce is a key driver for the growth on the continent. According to a recent report by the World Bank, over 60% of Africa’s population is under the age of 25. This young demographic is also increasingly well-educated, with many having degrees in computer science, engineering, and mathematics. These young, tech-savvy individuals are poised to drive innovation and growth in the region’s tech industry and beyond. 

In recent years, there has been a surge in investment and support for the data science sector in Africa. Major tech companies such as Google, Microsoft, and Facebook have established presences in the region, while local tech startups are rapidly emerging. This investment is providing opportunities for young Africans to develop their data science skills and pursue careers in this field.

African data scientists are already making a significant impact. In countries such as Kenya and South Africa, data scientists are working on projects aimed at addressing major societal challenges, such as improving healthcare delivery and increasing access to finance for small businesses. For instance, under the mHealth Kenya project, data scientists use mobile health technology to improve access to care and improve health outcomes in rural areas of Kenya. HealthQTech is also a South African startup that uses machine learning algorithms to assist medical professionals in diagnosing and treating patients. Their platform analyses electronic medical records, patient histories, and lab results to provide personalised recommendations to physicians.

In conclusion, Africa’s data science talent is the next big thing in the tech industry. With a young and educated workforce, a rapidly growing tech industry, and a focus on using data science to address societal challenges, Africa’s data science industry is poised for explosive growth in the coming years. Investors and tech companies looking to tap into this talent pool would do well to keep an eye on Africa.