The Distributed Ledger Technology (DLT) or Distributed Database Technology (DDT), commonly known as blockchain technology is an internet based technology acclaimed for its openness, truthfulness and immutability.
A report released by Liquid Telecom highlighted that the shortage of skilled manpower is an obstacle to blockchain adoption in Africa. Dr. Ndemo, Chairman of Kenya’s Blockchain and AI task-force sounds a note of warning:
“If countries don’t begin to build new capabilities for these technologies, then they will be bystanders”.
Why Africa should care?
The African continent has been known for burgeoning youth unemployment, corruption, hunger just to name a few. Africa loses about 25% of its GDP ($148) to corruption annually.
On employment, Bloomberg in a study says blockchain-based jobs increased fourfold on professionals social platform LinkedIn in 2017 alone.
on the other hand, the United Nations World Food Program (WFP) Communications Officer, Leighia Bowers commented on its fight against hunger: “blockchain is proving to have the biggest impact to the organisation’s operations” on hunger alleviation.
George Etheredge, research analyst at Digital Transformation Practice for Frost and Sullivan on anti-corruption: “Blockchains can be accurately verify the identities if individuals while offering a method to register assets and track transaction, all of which can contribute to limiting the potential for corruption. Despite the immerse benefit the technology presents, it is sad to note that there is still a shortage of the required skills needed to turn the industry around.
Changing the narrative
Upgrading the curriculum at tertiary institutions with blockchain related courses was fingered as a way of bridging the gap. Already, the university of Johannesburg in its Cyber-security and Financial engineering courses is in the lead with it’s addition of blockchain-based content.
Babu Paul, Director in the Institute for Intelligent Systems at the University of Johannesburg agrees educational institutions are the best placed to groom DLT based talent.
“The technologies required in the fourth industrial revolution are becoming more and more multidisciplinary and multi-sectional. This is why universities with expertise from various displaces are best suited for the task of training entrepreneurs and developers with the skills they need to prepare for Blockchain.”
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