Book launch: digitisation and AI in African media

How do digitisation and AI impact on journalism in African media? These are questions that Professor Carol Azungi Dralega from NLA University College explores in a new book.

The anthology Digitisation, AI and Algorithms in African Journalism and Media Contexts: Practice, Policy and Critical Literacies, edited by Professor Carol Azungi Dralega, was launched at NLA University College in Kristiansand on Wednesday 14 February. In the book, the authors explore how digitisation, AI and algorithms impact on journalistic and media practices in the context of Africa. Professor Dralega and the authors specifically focus on the challenges and opportunities associated with such technology in Sub-Saharan Africa, addressing the knowledge gaps within this field in the Global South context.

The articles in the book show how AI, robots, algorithms and data metrics have permeated the media industry, and how they are rapidly changing journalistic practices, cultures and norms. The themes addressed include editorial agenda setting, news production processes and audience and advertiser targeting, with a particular emphasis on social media platforms.

At the time of the launch, the book had not yet arrived from the printer. However, the editor, Professor Dralega and two of the contributors, Gezahgn Kidanu and Osei Wise, who are master’s students in global journalism, are celebrating the book’s release with cake.

Professor Dralega has been conducting research into the role of information and communication technology (ICT) in development for several years, with a particular focus on issues related to information poverty, digital divides and e-inclusion. She has published numerous articles and anthologies and is a pioneering researcher in the field. 

Important resource

The book provides readers with new knowledge on key issues related to automation and data-driven media, and journalistic practices in African contexts, in an era described as post-truth, post-human and post-COVID.

– I hope the book can serve as an important resource for researchers, educators, media students, academics, interest groups, journalists, developers and policymakers, both in Africa and internationally, says the book’s editor, Professor Carol Azungi Dralega from NLA University College.