Incubator Lab: June, 21 to 24, 2023 in Nairobi, Kenya
Organised by Global Diplomacy Lab (GDL) members Gaurav Sharma, Sylvia Mukasa and Maia Mazurkiewicz, the Lab focused on the “Impact of Mis- and Disinformation in the Global South” and the influence of emerging technologies such as AI on these phenomena.
Misinformation and Disinformation poses a pressing challenge in today’s world. Recent global events, ranging from Misinformation on climate change to political unrest during election campaigns, vividly demonstrate the alarming power and rapid spread of Misinformation and Disinformation. The widespread availability of smartphones and the affordability of internet access enable easy and inexpensive access to social media platforms such as Facebook, WhatsApp and TikTok, leading to an exponential increase in the flow and consumption of information. At the heart of the problem lies the fact that a significant portion of the information disseminated through these platforms remains unchecked and unverified, adding to the urgency of addressing this critical issue.
The Lab in Nairobi focused on better understanding of the mechanisms of Misinformation and Disinformation in the Global South, and to brainstorm on solutions how to provide access to reliable information for all members of society. Specifically, it aimed at understanding how Misinformation and Disinformation attempts to create influential perspectives and narratives.
A wide range of stakeholders participated, including GDL members, external and local partners, experts, GDL staff, IT industry representatives and government officials. Local partners and experts allowed for a closer look at how people inform themselves on a daily basis. This broad participation fostered a rich exchange of perspectives and allowed for a comprehensive understanding of the complexity of the issue at hand.
In Kenya, participants learned more about the challenges of the situation from various local institutions as well as experts who share their experiences. Topics ranged from social media to the impact of new technologies such as AI. GDL members visited various projects in Nairobi where they gained further insight into specific aspects of the overall challenge.
The Lab seeked to identify strategies and best practices that can effectively address Misinformation and Misinformation in the Global South, ultimately leading to more informed and resilient societies.
GDL Members Attending This Lab