The digital revolution has deeply transformed the relations between Africa and its diaspora. The contribution of the African Diaspora has evolved considerably over the last years, both financially and intellectually.
There is a better interconnection between Africa and its diaspora thanks to the digital. There is now more fluidity and confidence in the exchanges, as evidenced by the financial assistance of the diasporans and many other initiatives in favor of the continent.
In fact, digitization for the Diaspora means a tool to be closer to the ground realities. Money transfers are an example: up to 65 billion dollars transferred to the continent in 2016 (according to ADB), more than the official development assistance and foreign direct investments. The younger generation of immigrants feels relieved from a sort of economic or social “complex”, a consequence of colonization or racial domination.
The Diaspora is now aware of its true financial value, but more importantly, of its intellectual value. The digital revolution has made it possible to better disclose all the “African genius”, in terms of entrepreneurship, creativity and innovation.
It’s about a new generation of interactive, confident, interconnected and against the identitarian closure, who develops its expertise successfully both in the West and Africa and who is emerging as a new power for Africa.
This African intellectual revolution is expressed through digital channels: creation of startups and e-businesses, launching of projects in Africa etc. The African diaspora has gained a lot of respect, with the social and economic impact of its local projects.
A generation very interconnected is born, disregarding geographical boundaries. Many diasporan professionals are starting projects outside their countries of origin. They understood that the “entrepreneurial spirit” or the pursuit of social success goes beyond geographical or racial considerations. Pan Africanism is conceived rather as a value, than a mere identity slogan.
With the Internet, many tools are created to better practice, learn and share. Nowadays thanks to the digital, the exchange of ideas and entrepreneurship within the African community abroad is on a high level. The watchword for all diasporans seems to be the search for solutions to the problems of the continent.
However, there is a big challenge, according to some: the African political class is suspected to govern according to Western models and interests, with no real original, innovative, “contextualized” development projects and not involving the local populations and the diasporans first.
Nevertheless, African youth is aware of its role to play. To this end, the digital is an exceptional tool for free expression, undertaking, monitoring, investing, finding careers, learning or contributing to the influence of the continent.