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Digital Economy

Digital Economy


Our digital economy team at Genesis focuses on technology innovation and the opportunities it provides for improving the development potential of African nations. Our work is focused on supporting African governments, their development partners and private firms in forging new tech-enabled pathways to inclusive growth:

  • We work with a range of partners in identifying tech-enabled opportunities for improving service delivery in healthcare and education, job creation and inclusion, and addressing the impacts of the COVID pandemic, and the steps that need to be taken for these opportunities to scale inclusively.
  • We advise policymakers and regulatory authorities on how best to create an enabling environment for the application of tech innovation, including national digital strategies, policy and regulatory assessment and reforms, and systemic interventions to build sustainable tech ecosystems.
  • We work with the private and public sectors to assess the efficiency of digital infrastructure, including broadband infrastructure, data storage and processing infrastructure, and digital devices. We work with regulators and policymakers to shape the governance of digital infrastructure to improve digital inclusion.
  • We work with international donor agencies and public sector organisations to identify the digital skills required to support the changing nature of work in the fourth industrial revolution, and the capacity-building requirements in government to support the rollout of tech applications.
  • We have a dedicated R&D function to design and develop digital tools and data-intelligence products to help our clients do their business better. This includes digital applications such as chatbots and data-analytics tools and dashboards to help our clients make sense of complex datasets and inform their decision-making.

We have also established relationships with a number of stakeholders in the tech policy arena in Africa that will be useful in executing this assignment. Our networks include:

The Pathways for Prosperity Commission on Technology and Inclusive Growth at Oxford University that will soon develop into a TechGov Hub once the commission reaches the end of its lifecycle.

The 4IR WEF Affiliate Centre, which is being established in South Africa to focus on 4IR governance issues.

The UNECA Digital Centre for Excellence, which focuses on the enabling environment for digital ID, digital trade, and the digital economy in Africa.

The Insight2Impact Facility, which provides research and advocacy on data regulation and use cases.

The Better Than Cash Alliance, which provides advocacy and capacity building in digital payments.

The GSM Association, which provides research and advocacy on telco regulation and mobile tech policy.

The Digital Impact Alliance, which has developed digital principles to guide the deployment of tech projects.


South Africa in the Digital Age (SADA) is an urgent, multi-sectoral, economic strategy development process to charter South African pathways for inclusive growth in the digital age. The process is a joint venture between the University of Pretoria's Gordon Institute of Business Science (GIBS), Genesis Analytics and the Pathways for Prosperity Commission. Read more



    How does Airbnb support inclusive growth of tourism in South Africa

    Airbnb commissioned Genesis Analytics measure the digital platform's impact on inclusive growth in South Africa.


    Assessing tech-enabled solutions to global youth unemployment

    Genesis was commissioned by Mercy Corps to conduct a rapid impact assessment of its Youth Impact Labs (YIL) programme.


    Genesis supports Uganda with strategy to capitalise on 4IR to drive growth

    Genesis is providing technical support to Uganda's Presidential Taskforce on the fourth industrial revolution (4IR) to formulate a national 4IR strategy to guide the country on areas where 4IR technology can be domesticated to achieve development objectives.


    Evaluating the development of Tanzanian innovation ecosystem

    Genesis conducted the mid-term strategic evaluation of the Developing Innovation and Entrepreneurship Ecosystems in Tanzania programme, jointly funded by Fondation Botnar and the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC).


    Facilitating continuous learning for AI health research collaborative

    Genesis Analytics has been contracted to support the International Digital Health & AI Research Collaborative (I-DAIR) through a developmental evaluation (DE). Unlike the traditional formative or summative evaluations, DEs facilitate real-time or close-time feedback loops, facilitating a continuous learning cycle.


    Addressing food security in a global pandemic

    Genesis Analytics, through the support of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation (BMGF), advised the Solidarity Fund on if, and how, it could support a sustainable food production intervention that addressed the persistent experience of hunger by the most vulnerable households in South Africa (which has been aggravated by COVID-19).


    Design thinking for innovative bank products in Tanzania

    Genesis was contracted to support FinSights Lab, an innovation initiative enabling solutions for financial services institutions to enhance financial inclusion, in supporting a large Tanzanian bank to develop new products and services for the mass market.


    Genesis looks for drivers of innovation ecosystem in SADC region

    Genesis was contracted by FinMark Trust and the Insights 2 Impact (i2i) Facility to conduct an innovation scoping study for the Southern African Development Community (SADC) region to identify the drivers of innovation ecosystem development and opportunities to enhance the innovation ecosystem in the SADC.


    Insights into changing nature of work for young Africans

    Genesis was contracted by the Mastercard Foundation to perform audience-needs research for a new initiative to improve the availability of insights relating to the changing nature of work for young Africans in the coming 10-15 years.

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