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Playing Both Sides or Being Played? Africa in China-U.S. Tech Wars

活动系列: 中国和全球南方

Playing Both Sides or Being Played? Africa in China-U.S. Tech Wars

Even as Belt and Road Initiative funding in Africa decreases, China’s Digital Silk Road remains active, and digital geostrategic competition between the United States and China continues to heat up. In this online conversation, the panelists addressed digital diplomacy, digital sovereignty, and African technology entrepreneurship amidst these tech wars.

This event was co-sponsored by Georgetown University’s Africa-China Initiative, the Initiative for U.S.-China Dialogue on Global Issues, and Howard University's Center for African Studies.


Seyram Avle is an associate professor in the Department of Communication at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst. Her research focuses on digital technology cultures and innovation across parts of Africa, China, and the United States.

Mandira Bagwandeen is a lecturer at Stellenbosch University's Department of Political Science where she focuses on Africa in global affairs and Africa-China relations.  She holds several affiliate positions with South African and international think tanks and organizations.

Henry Tugendhat is an economist with the China team at the U.S. Institute of Peace. He focuses on issues related to China's impact on conflict dynamics in Africa and Latin America. His core areas of interest include conflict, economics, telecommunications, and cybersecurity in the context of China-Africa and China-Latin America relations.

Bob Wekesa is the director at the African Centre for the Study of the United States, University of the Witwatersrand, South Africa. He is also a senior lecturer in the Department of Journalism and Media Studies, where he supervises master’s degree and doctoral projects in international communications. 

Ken Opalo (moderator) is an associate professor at Georgetown University’s School of Foreign Service. His research interests include legislative development, the politics of service provision under decentralized government, education reforms, and electoral politics in emerging democracies.