22/10/2012

A work on the social networks in Africa wins Casa África's Essay Prize

Social networks open up other opportunities to build new political and social structures

Social networks open up other opportunities to build new political and social structures

Social networks in Africa: instruments for transformation and change is the title of the essay that has won the fourth edition of Casa África's Essay Prizes. The text, written by Antoni Castel Tremosa and Carlos Bajo Erro, analyses the creative and militant use of ICT by civil society on the African continent and its subsequent contribution to the democratisation of its countries, where it opens up channels for citizens to take part in the control of political processes - with a special effect on electoral ones - and collaborate in the social transformations that come from it.

The work by Castel and Bajo uses the examples of Senegal, Angola and Kenya to show the different social platforms where citizens act as activists, journalists and even electoral observers. These are initiatives that guarantee a greater transparency in electoral processes, the response to autocratic regimes, and lastly, the control by citizens for the politicians' actions and the construction of a new model for society. The SMS in Mozambique, Ushaidi in Kenya, Sahara Reporters or Battabox in Nigeria or #sunu2002 in Senegal are some of the experiences in the social networks that are described in this work, which is especially focused on observing citizens through social networks during the last electoral process in Senegal and the blogospheres of Ghana and Angola.

 

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