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World Economic Forum publishes blockchain ‘Bill of Rights’

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, SiliconNigeria
, SiliconNigeria

COVID-19 has accelerated the development and use of emerging technology across industries. For blockchain technology to scale in its next phase, global alignment between the public and private sectors is needed.

To help individuals and companies build trust and preserve the fundamental values of blockchain technology, the World Economic Forum’s Global Blockchain Council developed the “Presidio Principles: Foundational Values for a Decentralized Future.”

Co-designed at the World Economic Forum’s offices in the Presidio of San Francisco, sixteen principles aim to protect users and preserve the values of the technology so that all can benefit.

“The blockchain ecosystem needed a baseline for designing applications that preserve the rights of users,” said Sheila Warren, Head of Blockchain and Data Policy, World Economic Forum. “During our council meeting, we realized we could help curb many of the mistakes and missteps seen so far if we were able to provide developers, governments and executives with a ‘Bill of Rights’ style document.”

Rights are grouped into four broad pillars: Transparency & Accessibility – the right to information about the system; Privacy & Security – the right to data protection; Agency & Interoperability – the right for individuals to own and manage their data; and Accountability & Governance – the right for system users to understand available recourse.

The Presidio Principles

Applications built on top of blockchain-based systems should preserve the following participant rights. A participant should have access to information that would enable them to:

Understand how a service is operated, including potential risks of the service, availability of source code, and the rules and standards upon which it is based.
Understand the potential risks and benefits of a service’s use of blockchain technology.
Understand system performance expectations and where the responsibility for service delivery lies.
Understand the rights and obligations of different participants in the system.

A participant should be able to:

Create, manage, and independently store cryptographic keys.
Manage consent of data stored in third-party systems.
Port data between interoperable systems or parts of a system.
Revoke consent for future data collection.
Have access to information sufficient to facilitate system interoperability.
Assess if their data is at risk through appropriate disclosure procedures, which may include, but are not limited to, an examination of audit results, certifications, or source code.
Have their data protected in accordance with internationally recognized technical security standards.
Limit data collection to that which is necessary and data use to the purpose for which it was provided.
Verify – through third-party or self-created tools – that operations have been completed and confirmed in accordance with the system’s rules.
Access information needed to: (a) understand the system’s governance and rules and (b) pursue effective recourse mechanisms.
Opt-out of using applications that don’t treat data in accordance with internationally recognized governance and data protection standards.
Rectify demonstrably false, inaccurate, or incomplete data when necessary.

The Principles include a menu of options for how organizations or individuals can take action. A list of signatories is available to view and self-regulate/hold others accountable.

The genesis for this idea came during the first meeting of the Forum’s Global Blockchain Council in 2019. The content was developed and workshopped in sessions around the world, including at the Annual Meeting in Davos 2020 with a variety of members of the blockchain community, government officials, civil society members and business leaders. A public comment period on the developer platform GitHub was open from 10 April 2020 to 5 May 2020.

“Our Global Blockchain Council membership reflects varying ideological perspectives on what blockchain technology is appropriate for and where it is going, ranging from bitcoin maximalists to enterprise service providers,” Warren said. “This highly opinionated group came together and agreed that the blockchain community needed the foundational principles we are presenting today. Agreement from across Council members, despite their divergent perspectives, indicates the critical need for a values-based document like this in order to ensure that the technology remains true to its roots as the application layer starts to scale.”

The Forum is partnering with ecosystem leaders from Hyperledger and Ethereum, as well as the consulting and investor communities to issue specific “Guidance Documents” around how the principles can be implemented on a more tactical level. These will further help developers, governments, executives, corporate boards, international organizations and others implement the principles and take action now.

Additionally, Global Blockchain Council members will be partnering with individual organizations, associations and membership-based entities and investors for virtual sessions on how companies can meaningfully implement the Principles in their operations.

Early Adopters and Supporters

“I accepted the nomination to Co-Chair the Global Blockchain Council because I believe despite differences in methods and philosophies, there’s a shared feeling in the blockchain ecosystem that this technology is truly disruptive, democratizing access to money and ownership of data in ways that we never could before,” said Elizabeth Rossiello, Chief Executive Officer, AZA Finance. “As a founder and entrepreneur, I know that the Presidio Principles will encourage wider accessibility to emerging technologies and therefore wider potential for adopters.”

“As fiduciaries, it is our responsibility to act not only in the interest of our investors, but also in a manner that better aligns investor outcomes with the broader objectives of society,” said Meltem Demirors, Chief Strategy Officer, CoinShares. “By incorporating the Presidio Principles into our investment analysis, ownership policies, and disclosures, we will introduce a voluntary set of investment guidelines for professional asset managers allocating institutional capital into digital currencies and blockchain networks.”

“As open sourced and decentralized systems keep moving forward, we have seen how challenging it can be to build guidelines that apply to different and evolving blockchain projects, and that help teams work to solve problems together,” said Aya Miyaguchi, Executive Director, Ethereum Foundation. “Fortunately and thanks to the hard work of everyone involved, I believe that the Principles will provide a high-level framework that can really help these critical conversations continue throughout the lifespan of the technology.”

“As an open source community, we are focused on developers,” said Brian Behlendorf, Executive Director, Hyperledger, Linux Foundation. “How they choose to build their solutions affects not only the users of today, but the trajectory of the technology. We are exploring ways for our community of developers to not just read and sign onto the principles – but look for ways to meaningfully integrate them into their processes.”

“Decentralized protocols are designed to enhance trust and security through transparency,” said Joseph Lubin, Founder of ConsenSys. “The Presidio Principles are a valuable next step for creating ecosystem-wide accountability to these goals. We hope all builders of Ethereum-based projects – and across the blockchain landscape – will sign on to demonstrate their commitment to the users of their systems and applications.”

“We have built our blockchain business around the key needs and requirements of our clients and we are excited to join with others to advance these principles,” said David Treat, Senior Managing Director and Global Blockchain Lead, Accenture. “Our focus is to responsibly apply this technology to drive real value with a priority on inclusion and social impact, particularly in these challenging times where there is so much potential to help.”

“The World Food Programme has been exploring blockchain technology for many years to help expand refugee choices for assistance more efficiently, transparently and securely,” said Arif Husain, Chief Economist and Director of the Food Security Analysis and Trends Service at United Nations World Food Programme. “Ensuring that the people we serve truly benefit from every blockchain deployment is of utmost importance to us. We welcome the opportunity to use these principles ourselves but also to share more widely with our peers in the International Organisations community.”

“The Presidio Principles will become a global benchmark for good governance and accountability for the next generation of decentralized technology platforms,” said Tomicah Tillemann, Founder and Director, Digital Impact and Governance Initiative, New America. “At a moment when demand for accessible digital services is surging, the Principles will help the private sector and government create solutions that offer people more control of their data, privacy, and digital rights. We are grateful for the opportunity to collaborate with the World Economic Forum and an extraordinary group of leaders in developing this framework.”

“In our mission to empower everyone with economic freedom, we created and support Zcash as a fair and open currency,” said Zooko Wilcox, CEO of the Electric Coin Company. “Our values and commitment to high standards of user consent, security, and organizational transparency align strongly with the Presidio Principles and we look forward to their use as a standard in support of human freedoms.”

“Colombia views the Fourth Industrial Revolution as a significant opportunity for our country and we have worked to create an environment that favours and accelerates the transition to Industry 4.0,” said Victor Munoz, High Presidential Counsellor for Economic Affairs and Digital Transformation, Colombia. “We supported the creation of the Presidio Principles – as well as guidelines and design principles for public institutions – because we wanted to ensure that progress can continue rapidly and responsibly, ensuring that basic characteristics like security and data privacy are secured for our citizens.”

“In the Digital Economy 1.0 the focus was mainly on centralized efficiency and scale, too often at the expense of individuals’ privacy and rights,” said Jen Zhu Scott, Founding Principal, Radian Partners. “The Presidio Principles are designed to encourage aspiring entrepreneurs, builders, and participants to co-create a Digital Economy 2.0 that is inclusive, transparent, and with profound respect and protection to individual digital rights so we can empower the people as well as the businesses.”

“Ongoing dialogue between all stakeholders is critical to help businesses and governments alike navigate the challenges and opportunities presented by blockchain innovation,” said Greg Medcraft, Director, Directorate for Financial and Enterprise Affairs, Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD). “The Presidio Principles are an important contribution to this essential dialogue”.

“Blockchain, as the Internet of Value, holds enormous potential to build a more sustainable, prosperous, healthy and just world,” said Don Tapscott, Co-founder and Executive Chairman of the Blockchain Research Institute. “But people and organizations will determine how and to what goals this innovation is applied. The Blockchain Research Institute was pleased to contribute to the Presidio Principles and we commit to advocate them globally to help ensure the promise of this technology is fulfilled.”

“Technology holds great potential for increasing trust and transparency – but if not deployed correctly, it also holds great risk to the world’s most vulnerable,” said Delia Ferreira Rubio, Chair of Transparency International. “We want to use these Principles in our work across the globe to ensure that the user and technology’s potential for good is at the heart of each design choice.”

“We commend the World Economic Forum’s initiative on achieving wide alignment and responsible adoption of transformative technologies,” said Linda Pawczuk, US Blockchain Leader, Deloitte Consulting LLP.

“Everledger was founded in 2015 with the mission of digital transparency,” said Leanne Kemp, Founder and Chief Executive Officer, Everledger. “The space has evolved over time, but it is clear that most are here to transform the way things operate for the better. We are excited to use the Principles in conversations internally and with our partners to hold each other accountable to the vision we are trying to achieve.”

“At OmiseGO, we believe that the ability for people to transfer money globally and without restrictions has become a basic human need,” said Vansa Chatikavanij, Chief Executive Officer, OmiseGO. “Our contribution towards a more financially accessible world is to launch the OMG Network to scale Ethereum transactions and lower the cost barrier, without sacrificing security. User protection and governance are critical for fintech players. The Presidio Principles is a starting point to help ensure innovation can progress with sufficient consideration.”

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West Africa

IDC Examines Rise of Innovative Digital Strategies in West Africa

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IDC Examines Rise of Innovative Digital Strategies in West Africa, SiliconNigeria

More than 100 of West Africa’s most influential IT and business decision makers gathered online this week for the 8th annual installment of the IDC West Africa CIO Summit , with Kashifu Inuwa, director general of Nigeria’s National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA) presenting the day’s opening address.

Hosted on IDC’s industry-leading digital platform, the event brought together senior business leaders, influential IT heads, and respected industry analysts to share their collective expertise around the theme ‘Innovative Digital Strategies: Evolving to the Demands of a New Reality’.

“Evolving to the demands of a new reality will require changes in approach to connectivity and IT infrastructure, security, workforce, and customer experience,” said Mark Walker, IDC’s associate vice president for Sub-Saharan Africa, as he welcomed the delegates. “Executive buy-in and collaboration across lines of business and technology leadership will be key to facilitating this transformation.”


“Securing this executive buy-in will require a clear focus on the individual goals of the entire C-suite,” added Oluwole Babatope, IDC’s senior research analyst in West Africa. “Indeed, IT leaders should ensure innovative digital strategies incorporate the CEO’s goal of customer experience, the CMO’s goal of customer engagement, the COO’s goal of customer journey, and the CFO’s goal of cost management.”

The IDC West Africa CIO Summit 2021 combined presentations, panel discussions, real-life use cases, and individual technology tracks to give delegates exclusive guidance on overcoming the challenges that lie in wait. IDC’s chief research officer, Meredith Whalen, presented the Summit’s keynote address, ‘The Future Enterprise: Developing Digital Resiliency ‘, in which she warned the region’s businesses that COVID-19 will not be the last disruption they face.

The event also played host to the launch of IDC’s CIO Advisory Council for West Africa. The council is an independent industry body tasked with spurring collaboration, incubating innovation, and accelerating the proliferation of new technology trends across the region, and its esteemed members for 2021 include: Bukola Ajetunmobi, CIO, Providus Bank; Oluwaseun Solanke, CIO, Airtel Nigeria; Prasanna Burri, Group CIO, Dangote Group; Richard Amafonye, CIO, Wema Bank; Tobe Nnadozie, Divisional Head, Business Technology & Digital Innovation, CSCS; Godfred Ofori-Som, Head of IT, Ghana National Petroleum Corporation; Tagbo Nnoli, CIO, Polaris Bank and; Foster Ekuede Lelekele, Director, Management Information Systems, Ghana Highway Authority For the very first time, this year’s IDC West Africa CIO Summit incorporated a dedicated CIO Masterclass Arena  that attendees were able to access throughout the course of the event. This section of the virtual platform showcased a series of exclusive CXO best-practice presentations, fireside chats, and panel discussions with more than 30 respected industry thought leaders from global and regional pioneers such as HSBC, Chevron Corporation, McDonald’s, Levi Strauss & Co., Toyota, OANDA, ARB Apex Bank, and Nigeria’s Central Securities Clearing System.

IDC would like to thank the following partners for their invaluable contribution to the success of the IDC West Africa CIO Summit 2021: Summit Partners: VMware and UiPath; Platinum Partners: Palo Alto Networks, Dell Technologies, Citrix, Poly, and Open Text; Technology Focus Group Partners: Darktrace, Check Point, Hewlett Packard Enterprise operated by Selectium, ManageEngine, and FireEye.

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Africa Region

Canon Collaborate With Nigeria, Egypt, Kenya Creative Communities

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Canon Collaborate With Nigeria Egypt Kenya Creative Communities, SiliconNigeria

Canon Central and North Africa (CCNA) has invited film and photography communities across Africa to connect and collaborate. They are excited to announce the first three: SYNC School in Cairo, Egypt; Peexoo, a Nigerian photography hub, and the Photographers’ Association of Kenya (PAK).

 More are welcome as the global imaging leaders would like to develop creative collaborations in every country in the region. Canon has been a long-standing supporter of film and photography education groups. These relationships can now go deeper by sharing Canon expertise, knowledge and technology, with regular masterclasses, training opportunities, photo booths and competitions.

Canon is committed to build closer ties with its customers and the collaborations are a way to inspire and enrich the next generation of image-makers. “Our mission is to empower people to see the bigger picture, on a grand yet local level,” explains Amine Djouahra, sales and marketing director for Canon Central & North Africa. “In this rapidly changing, image-based culture, we want to explore new and innovative ideas with a wider audience.”

There has been an enthusiastic response: “SYNC is a community based school of 94,000 for creatives in Egypt with photographers, filmmakers and content creators. We are thrilled to build this relationship with Canon and learn, grow and create together,” said SYNC’s founder and creative director, Mustafa Sharara.

Peexoo, a photography hub powered by artificial intelligence, brings together 2,000+ photographers and videographers from across Nigeria. “We change perceptions through film and photography,” said Peexoo Co-Founder, tech-preneur Steven Kelechi Nwadike. “We are ecstatic that Canon is joining us on this journey.”

The Professional Photographers’ Association of Kenya (PAK) is the leading photographic society in the country, representing professionals, amateurs and hobbyists. “We are proud to partner with Canon at this time, a collaboration which will uplift, inspire and encourage our photographic community,” said Victor Otieno, PAK Treasurer.

Through the collaborations, community members gain exclusive access to masterclasses with Canon ambassadors including Emmanuel Oyeleke (https://bit.ly/3xpFaOD) and Yagazi Emezi (https://bit.ly/2SHkx1A) who will present a masterclass to Peexoo members and Menna Hossam (https://bit.ly/3vvefzE) who will present “Fine art and fashion photographer: Challenges of this genre & the future of creating enchanting images in the era of social media”, to SYNC School members.

Regular competitions will be used to challenge and inspire with exciting prizes such as Canon’s mini phone-to-printer Zoemini, the portable Selphy and the G-Series printers, as well as a compact Powershot SX720 and mirrorless M50 cameras.

Hands-on ‘touch and try’ sessions with cutting-edge Canon R system technology, EOS cameras and lenses are in the plan with special, members-only discounts available on Canon equipment.

Canon’s interest in developing and recognising excellence both in amateur and professional photographers goes beyond this. The Canon Future Focus programme for students is in its fifth year and the inaugural Redline Challenge for amateur photographers received great response in entries from African region.

 “We believe in enriching local creatives and welcome the opportunity to connect and support the next generation of visual storytellers. By investing expertise, technology and opportunities in them, we hope to enhance their art, skills and future careers,” said Amine Djouahra.

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Africa Region

Facebook Highlights Afrocentric Liquor Loved in Homes and Bars Globally

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Facebook Highlights Afrocentric Liquor Loved in Homes and Bars Globally, SiliconNigeria

In commemoration of this year’s Africa’s Day, Facebook draws attention to a brand that is helping to reshape, refine and reproduce a drink viewed by many as a ‘drink for the streets’.

This drink is popularly known as ‘ogogoro’ and the brand that’s putting this drink on the global map is Pedro’s Premium Ogogoro. With an Instagram page that has been deliberately designed to charm people from all walks of life into getting a taste of this drink, Pedro is doing a great job of spreading the tentacles of Nigeria’s cultural drink into the world’s most urban regions.

From Lagos Nigeria, Pedro’s premium ogogoro has now found a market in Ghana, Kenya and London. Let’s take a quick peek at seven things we can learn about this Afrocentric liquor that’s now finding its way to bars across the world.

  1. Ogogoro can be both traditional and modern

A first glance at Pedro’s Instagram page portrays the enticing look of a bottle with a splendid blue label. Pedro’s has proven that the drink called ‘ogogoro’ can look premium and be compared with Western alcoholic drinks like vodka, whiskey, brandy, etc.

  1. Ogogoro is loved by all and sundry

From the riverine communities of Nigeria’s southern regions, Pedro’s shows that ogogoro can transcend rural borders and find its way into the hands and homes of people living in highbrow areas of Lagos and other countries like Ghana, Kenya and the UK.

  1. Ogogoro isn’t just about the drink, it’s about the culture

Pedro’s Premium Ogogoro constantly shows how the culture behind the drink is vital. A preview of the photos on the brand’s Instagram page shows several images of African cultural items. It’s obvious that the culture is what drives the brand, not just the liquor. Maybe, there’s a spirit in this spirit drink called ogogoro.

  1. People love ogogoro

Every now and then, you’ll see Instagram posts from Pedro’s explaining that their stock has been sold out which leads to a safe assumption that the demand for premium ogogoro is almost more than the supply.

  1. You can use ogogoro in cocktails

Cocktails are known to contain such heavy spirits as whiskey and vodka but it’s interesting to note that ogogoro can also make for a good base in cocktail drinks and they can actually look and taste great.

  1. Ogogoro can also use some pairings

Fans of alcoholic drinks are definitely aware of the multiple variations of meals and other stuff that probably go well with their favourite liquor. Ogogoro is not an exception. Asides distilling this premium spirit, Pedro’s goes through the task of educating the inexperienced or unknowing drinker about possible pairings that would be great with this drink.

  1. Premium ogogoro is made from four key processes

Premium ogogoro is obtained from the oil or raffia palm tree and has to go through four key processes namely, tapping, fermentation, distillation and refinement. The tapping is done in the rural areas by palm wine tappers; this is also where the natural fermentation occurs traditionally using wild yeast. The first round of distillation is also carried out by rural practitioners to help preserve the otherwise fermented sap. The final process is what separates premium ogogoro from its rural counterpart to give it that premium taste.

Learn more about Pedro’s Premium Ogogoro on the official Facebook Africa page and on a dedicated ‘Made by Africa, Loved by the World’ microsite to get a glimpse into the growth and success of the Afrocentric liquor that is loved in homes and bars across the world.

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