AI Expo Africa, in partnership with Wesgro Film and Media Promotion and African Data Science competition platform Zindi, has launched the Deepfake Africa Challenge in a bid to raise awareness about deepfake media, tools and ethics on the African continent.
Deepfakes have been prominent in the news in the last two years as the tools and platforms that allow for such content to be produced are widely available and easy to use by both skilled and casual users.
While some deepfakes can be used to create fun, viral videos or new synthetic applications such as digital avatars that have multiple applications, they also can be used to manipulate or generate visual and audio content with the potential to deceive with subsequent negative impacts for people, organisations and wider society.
Dr Nick Bradshaw, founder & CEO of AI Media the company behind AI Expo Africa, stated, “The objective of the challenge is to create convincing deepfakes to highlight the power of this synthetic media, illustrating its creative potential for exploitation for both positive and negative outcomes and focusing debate about its ethical use or mis-use in an African context. We partnered with Zindi as they have the largest community of Data Scientists in Africa, and Wesgro Film Unit to tap into the award-winning creative industry based in the Western Cape, South Africa. This challenge is open to both creative and technical talent across Africa. We look forward to seeing the outcomes from the submission.”
Wesgro Film and Media Promotion head Monica Rorvik commented, “Deepfake media can have negative outcomes. This challenge serves as an opportunity and platform that we can leverage during this interesting time of the “Pandemic of deep fakes” – and by working together, and checking facts, we can learn together and gain some herd immunity.”
Zindi co-founder and CEO Celina Lee stated “Deepfakes are fast becoming a challenge of our time. Through the Zindi platform we are seeking to tap into the collective insights and creativity from twenty-six thousand African data scientists to shine a light on this topic and create debate about the potential harms these media and tools can do from a uniquely African perspective.”
Submission and evaluation
Submissions are welcome from across the African continent and from relevant communities including researchers, developers, content creatives and film makers. The winning submissions of the Deepfake Africa Challenge will be showcased at AI Expo Africa 2021 ONLINE between 7 to 9 September.
- Artistic creativity and relevance to the challenge topic
- Level of innovation used in the process to generate the content
- A short explanation of platforms, tools and techniques used to generate your submission will greatly enhance your submission and are encouraged so we can build a picture of the most common tools and techniques used
The judging panel will be made up of representatives from Zindi, The AI Media Group and Wesgro. The judge’s decision will be final.
1st Place Winner: Complimentary ticket to join AI Expo Africa 2021 ONLINE (including 1x return economy flight & 4x nights hotel stay B&B courtesy of Radisson Blue to join us at AI Expo Africa 2022). The 1st Place Winner’s flight is eligible to delegates joining from outside the host city capped to $1000 using economy class fare. Expenses and visas are not included.
2nd and 3rd prize winners to receive 1x complimentary ticket to AI Expo Africa 2021 ONLINE.
Top 3 placed winners will have work showcased at AI Expo Africa 2021 along with write up and press mentions.
The competition closes on 30th July 2021. Final submissions must be received no later than 11:59 PM GMT 30th July 2021. Winners will be notified and announced by 17 August 2021 with the winning submissions being showcased at AI Expo Africa 2021 ONLINE between 7-9 September.
The challenge organisers reserve the right to update the content timeline if necessary.
Africa50 appoints Tshepidi Moremong as Chief Operating Officer
Africa50 incoming COO, Tshepidi Moremong (Source: Facebook)
Africa50, the pan-African infrastructure investment platform is pleased to announce the appointment of Ms. Tshepidi Moremong as Chief Operating Officer. Her appointment takes effect from July 1, 2021. She will lead a multi-disciplinary team including Fundraising, Investor Relations, Strategy, Human Resources and Administration, Communications, and Environmental and Social Governance.
Ms. Moremong is a seasoned senior executive with more than twenty-two years experience delivering strategic leadership in private equity, corporate finance and business development. She joins Africa50 from Rand Merchant Bank (RMB) in South Africa where she was the Head of Client Coverage for the rest of Africa outside South Africa, a role she has held since 2014. In this capacity, she was responsible for business development and client relationship management across nine markets. During her tenure, Ms. Moremong successfully built and led a multi-regional team which delivered significant results for RMB’s rest of Africa franchise. Ms. Moremong has also served as Chairman of the Board of Directors of the African Venture Capital Association, and has held multiple directorships for both listed and unlisted entities on the continent.
Prior to this, she held several leadership positions, including as an Investment Executive at Aureos Capital and Vice President at Renaissance Capital.
Throughout her career, Ms. Moremong has demonstrated a strong capacity for thought leadership, strategic decision-making and delivering bottom-line results.
Commenting on her appointment, Alain Ebobissé, CEO of Africa50, said “I am delighted to welcome Tshepidi to our team. She brings substantial pan-African financial sector experience, in-depth expertise in private-equity and has successfully led large multi-national teams across regions. I am confident that her leadership and broad business experience will be a great asset to ensure Africa50’s continued growth and success in the future.”
“I am excited and honoured to join the leadership team of Africa50. The organization has a bold mandate in driving the acceleration of infrastructure development on the continent. I am looking forward to working with the team and bringing my passion and expertise to further support Africa’s socio-economic transformation”, Ms. Moremong said about her appointment.
A native of Botswana, Ms. Moremong holds a Bachelor’s degree in Economics and Public Policy from Swarthmore College in Pennsylvania (USA) and an MBA in Finance from Columbia University’s Business School in New York (USA).
Qatar Airways to launch new route to Lusaka and Harare from August
Qatar Airways (Image: YouTube)
Qatar, DOHA – Zambia and Zimbabwe are being added to Qatar Airways expanding list of destinations in Africa from early August, bringing its award-winning service to two important southern African destinations.
The new service to Lusaka and onwards to Harare is scheduled to be operated with a Boeing 787 Dreamliner. It will connect passengers in Zambia and Zimbabwe with Qatar Airways’ global network of more than 140 destinations. With the addition of these two new routes the carrier will operate over 100 weekly flights to 27 destinations in Africa.
Qatar Airways Group Chief Executive, His Excellency Mr. Akbar Al Baker said: “Africa continues to be an area of strong growth for Qatar Airways and launching this service will support the development of the economy and tourism sector in both countries.
“Not only do we continue to rebuild our network after the pandemic, but we are actively expanding it with the addition of these two key destinations. These are the fifth and sixth new destinations in Africa added to our network since the start of the pandemic, taking our total new destinations added across the globe to 10.”
The launch of Lusaka and Harare also supports increased demand for trade between Zambia and Zimbabwe and destinations on the Qatar Airways network such as London, Frankfurt and New York and from multiple points in China. With a total of 30 tonnes of cargo capacity on the aircraft per flight, Qatar Airways Cargo will play a key role in facilitating key exports from Zambia and Zimbabwe.
As travellers return to the skies with Qatar Airways, they can take comfort knowing that they are travelling with the only airline in the world that has, together with its state-of-the-art global hub Hamad International Airport, achieved four 5-Star Skytrax ratings – including the prestigious 5-Star Airline Rating, 5-Star Airport Rating, 5-Star COVID-19 Airline Safety Rating and 5-Star COVID-19 Airport Safety Rating.
These achievements highlight Qatar Airways’ commitment to providing our passengers with an industry-leading experience at every point of their journey, including the highest possible level of health and safety standards that safeguard the wellbeing of our passengers both on the ground and in the air. For full details of all the measures that have been implemented onboard and in HIA, please visit www.qatarairways.com/safety.
A multiple award-winning airline, Qatar Airways was named ‘World’s Best Airline’ by the 2019 World Airline Awards, managed by the international air transport rating organisation Skytrax. It was also named ‘Best Airline in the Middle East’, ‘World’s Best Business Class’, and ‘Best Business Class Seat’, in recognition of its ground-breaking Business Class experience, Qsuite. Qsuite is available on flights to more than 40 destinations including Casablanca, New York, Paris and Singapore.
Flight schedule starting 6 August:
Wednesday, Friday and Sunday
Doha (DOH) to Lusaka (LUN) QR1455 departs: 02:20 arrives: 08:50
Lusaka (LUN) to Harare (HRE) QR1455 departs: 10:20 arrives: 11:20
Harare (HRE) to Lusaka (LUN) QR1456 departs: 18:55 arrives 19:55
Lusaka (LUN) to Doha (DOH) QR1456 departs: 21:25 arrive 05:55 (+1)
AI for Good Global Summit founder Stephen Ibaraki confirmed as AI Expo Africa 2021 keynote speaker
AI for Good Global Summit founder, Stephen Ibaraki (Source: AI Expo Africa)
AI for Good Global Summit founder, Chairman of the AI for Good Outreach Committee, industry analyst, venture capitalist and serial entrepreneur Stephen Ibaraki has been confirmed as a keynote speaker for AI Expo Africa 2021 ONLINE which takes place 7th to 9th September.
Ibaraki is the first VIP keynote speaker to be confirmed for AI Expo Africa 2021 ONLINE. In his keynote address, entitled, “5th Machine Age Driving Digital Reshaping” he intends to explore the “Society 5.0” and “Smart Humanity”.
Ibaraki who is a 16 time recipient of the Microsoft Most Valuable Professional (MVP) award, most recently in the Artificial Intelligence (AI) category, is also the chairman and managing general partner of REDDS Capital. In addition to more than 300 awards and recognitions as well as over 300 global engagements impacting over $100-trillion in sustainable investments, Ibaraki is also a contributor for IT World Canada and Forbes on issues around AI.
Ibaraki’s keynote abstract states, “In popular stories about Chaos Theory, the wing beats of a butterfly in Geneva, are connected to the violent storms in your hometown in Africa. Global ecosystems, all interconnected thus force multiplied and amplified, are at an historical inflection point. These are founded on technology acceleration, with more disruption in 5 years, than the last 10,000 years. This Digital Reshaping will forever change governments, industry, academia, education, investments, startups, media, society, culture, our lives and our children’s future. What will the world look like, advanced by Smart Humanity, Society 5.0, 5th Machine Age, AI and innovation trends addressing global challenges and opportunities? What are the exponential change making innovations you must track, implement, and resources you must use to ensure success and not failure during these chaotic next five years?
Now entering it’s fourth successful year, AI Expo Africa is Africa’s largest B2B / B2G AI, RPA and 4IR smart tech trade event and conference, with the 2021 edition building to be the biggest yet with over 5000 delegates registering interest and expected to join the three-day online event.
Dr Nick Bradshaw, founder of AI Expo Africa and CEO of AI Media Group commented, “It’s a real honour to welcome Stephen as one of our VIP keynote speakers. We have been working with the ITU, Geneva since 2019 around partnering with the global AI4Good movement and the Africa region and this is another great commitment towards growing collaborations around AI4Good in our region. This announcement follows the recent conclusion of the first African focused ITU AI4Good Innovation Factory Challenge that received 44 applications from 12 African countries & 5 finalists using AI-powered innovation for diverse sectors in Africa covering Fintech, Agritech, Cleantech, and Insurtech.”
Over 30 organisations have so far signed up to exhibit at the expo. These include headline event partner Intel, Darktrace, Future Tech, Automation Anywhere partner 1ai, The Embassy of Switzerland in South Africa, InstaDeep, Aizatron, IBA Group, Zindi, Versus, Comparisure, Robotiq AI Africa, ecosystem Ai, Cognizance, Inspired Testing, Atura, Amathuba AI, COGO People Analytics, Elzware, WizzPass, Fliptin, Kosa AI, Learning Machines, Social Lab, Ashanti AI, and Curacel. In all about 80 speakers will make up the speaker list at AI Expo Africa 2021 ONLINE, with more keynotes set to be announced in the coming weeks.
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