Yvonne Mburu, CEO Med in Africa, participates to the Young Leaders Africa France program and was interviewed on 30th June 2017 by Dominique Laresche, TV5 World Africa.
The video is in French language with English captions. Excerpts:
Med in Africa is a platform to connect African scientists and health professionals in Africa and in Diaspora.
The idea came up after two observations:
- a data analysis from the U.S. bureau of statistics revealing that among migrant groups in the U.S. (such as African, Chinese, Indian or European), the group of migrant that demonstrated most success in education is migrants from Africa.
- the discovery that there are more medical doctors from Malawi in Manchester in the United Kingdom than doctors in Malawi; more Ghanaian doctors in New-York than there are in Ghana.
This 'brain drain' is an enormous loss for Africa and it has grave consequences, as those human resources are lack in Africa.
Because of the weakness of infrastructure and transportation networks in Africa, scientists are excluded from the global community.
So thanks to the platform Med in Africa, the diasporas can can be connected online : the programs are digital and break geographic boundaries so there is no need for participants to be physically in one place.
This is what makes digital networks and technology the fourth industrial revolution, enabling people to work together and to collaborate between remote locations. It opens also opportunities for the diaspora as well as for friends of Africa to 'give back', to help, to connect with African scientists. They can promote scientific collaborations and work together for Africa's future.
The main challenge for scientists living in Africa is a cruel lack of visibility. We consider that today, Africa contributes to ~2% of the World's production in science. We all know how important it is for scientists to be published in journals, to be recognized by peers. Research quality is evaluated through publications and citations and we also know there are cultural biases in citations. For example, the French cite the French more, the Americans cite the Americans more etc. so if the Africans don't cite Africans then African research cannot be valued properly.
Med in Africa will help : the idea is to create a global network of researchers doctors, professionals working in health, medicine to work together, to join the network, to participate to exchange programs. Together, we can all contribute to Africa's future.
Africa France YoungLeaders is a program to promote African and French entrepreneurs. It is an initiative of Africa France Foundation with support from French Development Bank AFD. It's an opportunity for a young entrepreneur to meet with other startups. Essentially, it is a leadership program to promote an ambitious and visionary leadership. It also creates a space to talk about health and science, to generate traction, to engage more people to join Med in Africa.