January - December 2023
Algorithmic Decision Making (ADM), Feminism and Inclusion in MENA: Unpacking Concepts and Call for proposals
February 8, 2023
The Access to Knowledge for Development Center (A2K4D) hosted its second webinar as the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) hub of the Fa+ir Hubs Network titled Algorithmic Decision Making (ADM), Feminism and Inclusion in MENA: Unpacking Concepts and Call for proposals on Wednesday, February 8, 2023 at 3 pm Cairo local time via Zoom. Joining the webinar as a speaker was Manal Jalloul, Founder of AI Lab and NVIDIA Deep Learning Institute, Certified Instructor and University Ambassador at the American University of Beirut. Jalloul unpacked concepts of ADM and discussed how it can be harnessed for gender inclusion in MENA. We also discussed the project’s latest call for proposals, titled Incubating Feminist AI: Call for Expressions of Interest Algorithmic Decision Making Systems. The call focuses on harnessing ADM for more equitable outcomes and models deploying more effective and inclusive social protection in MENA.
Incubating Feminist AI: MENA fair Hub’s First Network Meeting
December 14, 2022
A2K4D is proud to be the Middle East and North Africa hub of the fair Hubs Network (Feminist AI Research Network), an initiative of the <A+> Alliance global coalition. In our first MENA network webinar, we introduced the fair Hubs Network. We brought together key stakeholders in MENA in an action-oriented conversation on how new technologies, such as Artificial Intelligence, can be harnessed to address MENA’s most pressing developmental problems with a focus on gender inclusion.
Women and Work in Egypt’s Informal Digital Economy: Evidence-Based Insights for Policy Making
November 23, 2022
In this webinar, A2K4D shared insights from fieldwork conducted in Egypt with women working via social media and messaging platforms. Speakers also discussed areas for action in terms of policy recommendations to benefit similar women digital entrepreneurs and women working in the digital economy in general. This webinar is hosted in collaboration with Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung (FES) Egypt.
Women and Work: Egypt’s Informal Digital Economy Post COVID-19 in collaboration with Friedrich-Ebert- Stiftung (FES) Egypt.
January 31, 2022
In this webinar, we aimed to explore and further investigate the opportunities and risks for women, in terms of work, in the digital economy in Egypt and especially new forms of more informal digital work. This webinar picks up from a series of webinars conducted by A2K4D in collaboration with FES throughout 2020 on topics relevant to digitization, inclusion, and the impact of COVID-19 on the digital economy. Panelists: Christine Arab - country representative, The United Nations Entity for Equality and the Empowerment of Women (UN Women), Egypt; Rania Atef - founder, I Make This, Egypt; Hoda ElSadda - professor of English and Comparative Literature, Faculty of Arts at Cairo University, Egypt, Marwa Sharafeldin - visiting fellow Harvard Law School's Program for Law and Society in the Muslim World. Musawah, Global, and our associate director, Nadine Weheba. This webinar was moderated by: Nagla Rizk.
Fairwork Egypt 2021 Ratings: Report Launch
January 24, 2022
The Fairwork Egypt 21 report evaluates the working conditions of seven digital labor platforms – FilKhedma, Mrsool, Orcas, Swvl, Talabat, Mongez and Uber - against five principles of fairness—fair pay, fair conditions, fair contracts, fair management, and fair representation.
Egypt’s local start-up scene has boomed and diversified to include new digital labor platforms in different sectors such as transportation, education, domestic services and delivery services. In a country dominated by informality, digital labor platforms present unique and flexible opportunities for workers to earn an income in Egypt. However, workers on these platforms often lack basic rights and protections. We hope that the findings in this report will help all the relevant stakeholders work collaboratively to ensure fairer standards, inclusion and sustainability in Egypt’s platform economy.
Report authors Nagla Rizk, Nagham ElHoussamy, and Matthew Cole gave a brief presentation with key findings from the report. This was followed by a discussion with guest panelists Ahmed Kamaly, Deputy Minister at the Egyptian Ministry of Planning and Economic Development, Amal Mowafi, Chief of Party at USAID Scholars Activity at the American University in Cairo, and Salma Hussein, Regional Research Manager at FES MENA.
Global Innovation Index 2021: Insights into Innovation in Egypt
October 6, 2021
As part of the global launch of the 2021 Global Innovation Index report, A2K4D held an online panel titled ‘Global Innovation Index 2021: Insights into Innovation in Egypt’. Our distinguished panelists were Walid Abdel Nasser, director, Division for Arab Countries, World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO), Soumitra Dutta, professor and former founding dean, Cornell SC Johnson College of Business, president, Portulans Institute and founding editor of the Global Innovation Index, Ayman Ismail, Abdul Latif Jameel endowed chair of entrepreneurship and founding director, AUC Venture Lab and AUC Innovation Hub, AUC School of Business, Sherif Kamel, dean of AUC School of Business, and Ghada Labib, deputy minister of Communications and Information Technology. They each shared their reflections on the successes and the challenges of Egypt's innovation capacity in these unprecedented times. This panel was moderated by Nagla Rizk, founding director of A2K4D and professor of economics at AUC’s School of Business.
Panel Re-Designing Innovation Policies and Business Strategies as part of the release of the Global Innovation Index 2021, World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO)
September 20, 2021
Nagla Rizk joined the panel session held during the launch event of the Global Innovation Index 2021 on September 20, 2021, on the topic of "(Re)-designing Innovation Policies and Business Strategies". Panel members discussed how innovation policies and strategies need to be rethought and redesigned to make our economies and society future-ready.
Diversifying Economics Globally
September 7, 2021
Nagla Rizk, professor of economics and founding director of Access to Knowledge for Development Center (A2K4D), was invited by Dani Rodrik, president of the International Economic Association and the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University, to participate in the second panel discussion titled “Perspectives from Economists Around the World”. The panel was moderated by Professor Rodrik. Rizk spoke on the panel along with Raquel Bernal, from Universidad de los Andes, Haroon Bhorat, from the University of Cape Town, and Wendy Carlin, from UCL, CEPR, Santa Fe Institute.
AI for Good Webinars: AI in the Middle East and North Africa: Visions and Realities
June 23, 2021
We launched the report 'Imagining a Future with Intelligent Machines: A Middle Eastern and North African Perspective', co-produced by the Access to Knowledge for Development Center (A2K4D) at the Department of Economics, at the American University in Cairo’s School of Business, and the University of Cambridge's Leverhulme Centre for the Future of Intelligence (CFI). The launch took place as part of the AI for Good webinar series. The report contains findings from the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) edition of the AI Narratives workshop, which took place in Cairo, October 2019.
Mobile Technology and Social Transformations: Access to Knowledge in Global Contexts - Book Launch
May 26, 2021
The webinar took place as part of A2K4D's Eleventh Annual Workshop at the Department of Economics at the American University in Cairo School of Business.
Moderated by: Nagla Rizk
In acknowledgment of The Richard Bartlett Gift, Information Society Project (ISP) at Yale Law School and Access to Knowledge for Development Center (A2K4D) launched the "Mobile Technology and Social Transformations: Access to Knowledge in Global Contexts" book.
Thinking Higher and Beyond: Perspectives on the Futures of Higher Education to 2050
May 25, 2021
The report “Thinking Higher and Beyond: Perspectives on the Futures of Higher Education to 2050“ was launched at a virtual meeting as part of the la Educación Superior en América Latina y el Caribe (IESALC)’s project on the Futures of Higher Education with UNESCO. Experts from all over the globe are generating visionary ideas about the purpose and functions of higher education as it might be in the future. Nagla Rizk prepared a concept note sharing her views, ideas, and expertise on the two key questions this project is exploring: How would you like higher education to be in 2050? How could higher education contribute to better futures for all in 2050?
The report is the result of a collective and creative process of discussions around the role of higher education globally.
Women, Data and Code: Gender Inclusion in MENA's Digital Economy
April 6, 2021
Workshop Webinar part of the A2K4D Eleventh Annual Workshop #A2K11 in collaboration with Friedrich-Ebert- Stiftung (FES) Egypt
Moderator: Nagla Rizk
The objective of this webinar was to engage in a conversation on women in the digital economy in the MENA region. Speakers shared perspectives on women as subjects of data, as makers of technology, and women in corporate positions. Key to the conversation where the various roles simultaneously played by women, and how digital technologies can help women navigate frictions caused by social, cultural, economic, and legal barriers. The panelists were Jazem Halioui, founder and CEO at WebRadar.me, Tunisia, Nada Ihab, policy manager at Access Partnership, United Kingdom, and Manal Jalloul, co-founder of AI-Lab, NVIDIA Deep Learning Institute, American University in Beirut, Lebanon.
Business Forum Roundtable Two on the “Future of Work”, AUC School of Business
February 8, 2021
The second roundtable of the 2021 Business Forum on “Future of Work” was moderated by Ghada Howaidy, Associate Dean for Executive Education and External Relations at the AUC School of Business. This roundtable brought together local and international experts to discuss, the major global trends and challenges in preparing the workforce for the future. Rizk discussed why the “Future of Work” subject is more pressing in Egypt today and what clear opportunities that can emerge, particularly for inclusion, and especially for women.
Davos 2021: Society and Future of Work: Stopping Poverty from Going Viral, World Economic Forum
January 28, 2021
Nagla Rizk moderated this Davos Agenda 2021 session; “Stopping Poverty from Going Viral” with the World Economic Forum. The session hosted three panelists James X. Zhan (Senior Director, Investment and Enterprise, United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) Asif Saleh (Executive Director, BRAC), and Peter Kodwo Appiah Turkson (Cardinal; Prefect, Dicastery for Promoting Integral Human Development). This session assessed opportunities and challenges in achieving a more inclusive, resilient, and sustainable recovery. Speakers provided their insights on the immediate action needs that need to be taken to prevent more millions of people from going into extreme poverty.
A study on the Fourth Industrial Revolution, Artificial Intelligence, and the Future of Work in Egypt' International Labour Organization. Ministry of Manpower. ADWA.
December 21, 2020.
The International Labour Organization, Ministry of Manpower, and the ADWA' (Advancing the Decent Work Agenda in North Africa) hosted a dissemination event on the Fourth Industrial Revolution, Artificial Intelligence, and the Future of Work in Egypt. Ghada Labib, (Deputy Minister of Institutional Development, Ministry of Communication and Information Technology) presented the institutional development in the scope of the Digital Egypt Strategy. Abeer Fouad, (Researcher at the Central administration for employment and labor market information), presented strategies of the national committee on the future of jobs in Egypt. Nagla Rizk and Ayman Ismail presented findings and recommendations from their ILO report; 'The Fourth Industrial Revolution, AI and the Future of Work in Egypt'.
"ICTLearn 2020” Regional Event
December 6, 2020
Nagla Rizk was a keynote speaker in the ICTLearn 2020 14th International Conference Internet Education hosted by the Arab Forum for Human and Technology Development (AFHTD).
Fellow keynote speakers; Moataz Khorshid, former Minister of Higher Education and Scientific Research, Egypt. Prof. Mahmoud Saqr, President of the Academy of Scientific Research, Egypt. Prof. Moheb Al-Rafei, former Minister of Education, Egypt. Prof. Mohamed Jemni Director of ICT, ALECSO League of Arab States, Digital and knowledge solutions consultant UAE. Prof. Visitor Sherif Hasim USA, NY State University. Prof. Magdy ElNashar Curtin University, Australia. Manel Medhioub, University of Esprit, Tunisia. Aisha Abdul Hamid El-Tarif University, Algeria. Rana Al-Aloul Dean - Gaza University Palestine.
"Inclusive AI – Voices from the Middle East” Jordan Open Source Association (JOSA)
December 5, 2020
In this talk hosted by the Jordan Open Source Association, Rizk joined a panel of speakers from across the Middle East to spotlight their experience working in AI and conducting research in the field. The webinar also dealt with the topic of bias pertaining to gender and race in algorithms, and its impact on local society.
Women, Youth and the Future of Work: Inclusion in Challenging Times
November 24, 2020
Workshop webinar part of the A2K4D Tenth Annual Workshop
Moderator: Farah Ghazal
In this webinar, we shared experiences from the Global North and South and discussed the discourse on the opportunities and risks of emerging technologies: inequalities, unemployment, informality, and the widening of the digital divide. We will also provide examples of the impact of the pandemic on work for disadvantaged groups such as youth, women, and those working informally as well as the future outlook. Skills for the future: Preparing the workforce for the future job market including retraining and reskilling, creating business models to incorporate and scale pathways to jobs for the disadvantaged. Digitally inclusive policymaking - ensuring sustainable and inclusive development and opportunities that enable a decent life for those employed informally as well as youth and women while ensuring mechanisms such as safety nets are in motion to allow for time to adapt to technological changes. We hosted three speakers: Ayman Ismail (Abdul Latif Jameel Chair of Entrepreneurship, AUC Venture Lab, The American University in Cairo), Nada Shousha (Senior Advisor, International Finance Corporation), and Ahmed Abaza, Synapse Analytics).
“MENA Network Readiness and Digital Transformation Spotlight”, Portulans Institute.
November 11, 2020
Rizk was invited to speak at this regional panel hosted by the Portulans Institute, in cooperation with UNESCO, the School of Business at the American University in Cairo and the American Chamber of Commerce in Egypt, to highlight MENA’s track record in digital transformation, in addition to discussing regional data from the 2020 Network Readiness Index. Among other things, Rizk emphasized that digital transformation strategies must adopt a people-first approach, and consider the unique characteristics of the MENA region’s societies and demographics.
AI for Everyone: Applying AI in Developmental Sectors to Benefit the Underserved
October 26, 2020
Hosted by the Ministry of Communications and Information Technology in Egypt, as part of the ITU/UNESCO Digital Inclusion Week.
Rizk participated in this event hosted by the Ministry of Communications and Information Technology in Egypt, as part of the ITU/UNESCO Digital Inclusion Week.
New Technologies and Open Innovation: The Voice of Young African Scholars
October 20, 2020
Workshop Webinar part of the A2K4D Tenth Annual Workshop
Moderator: Farah Ghazal
This webinar allowed new and emerging African scholars, known as NERGS, within the Open African Innovation Network (Open AIR), to share their perspectives and research and to reflect on the impact of Covid-19 on their research and innovation in their areas and countries of study. A2K4D is the North African Hub on the Open African Innovation Network (Open AIR). We hosted three speakers from Open AIR: Nan Warner, Program Manager, Open AIR, Bontle Monnya, IP Unit, University of Cape Town, and Caroline Wanjiru Muchiri, Center for Intellectual Property and Information Technology Law IP Clinic Manager, Strathmore University.
Visualizing Innovation: Tracing Data Blind Spots in Egypt
October 20, 2020
Workshop Webinar part of the A2K4D Tenth Annual Workshop.
Moderator: Nadine Weheba
The webinar was an opportunity to showcase A2K4D and partners’ collaborative research efforts on alternative innovation and better understanding innovation data for the purposes of sustainable development and policymaking. This is especially pertinent given the extent to which the pandemic has highlighted and reinforced the importance of data on innovation, health, on education. This webinar will showcase collaborations with the Open African Innovation Research Network (Open AIR), the Alternative Innovation Measurement Lab (AIM Lab), SETS North Africa, and the Academy of Scientific Research and Technology, Egypt. We hosted three speakers from Egypt: Hossam Abdelgawad (Director of Urban Transport Technologies, SETS), Tyseer Aboulnasr (Retired Professor and Dean, University of British Columbia, Canada), and Islam Hassouna (MSc, University of Oxford).
The Digital Economy Post COVID-19: Global Outlook and Local Contexts
October 3, 2020
Workshop Webinar part of the A2K4D Tenth Annual Workshop.
Moderator: Nagla Rizk
As the pandemic over the world, amplified the role of digital technologies and pushed us sooner into scenarios we had anticipated for later in the future. These gave way to multidimensional concerns about the impact of digitization and new technologies especially AI on markets, production, consumption, education, labor, work practices, expected employment standards, skill development, government operation, and regulation, among other areas. There is now an urgency to focus on the impact of digitization on economic and social well-being and to understand the threats, the challenges but also the opportunities that we face in this brave new world. With this in mind, we at the Access to Knowledge for Development Center (A2K4D) in partnership with Friedrich-Ebert- Stiftung (FES) Egypt held a webinar on October 13, 2020, titled “The Digital Economy Post Covid-19: Global Outlook & Local Contexts”. The webinar comes as part of the Center’s tenth annual workshop, a five-part webinar series under the overarching title of ‘Beyond COVID-19: Conversations on AI, Data, and the Future of Work in MENA’.
Nagla Rizk moderated the webinar, hosting three panelists from Latin America, Africa, and Europe: Armando Guio Espanol (Affiliate, Berkman Klein Center for Internet and Society Harvard University), Monica Kerretts-Makau (Academic Director, Thunderbird School of Global Management in Nairobi, Kenya) and Fabian Stephany (Economist and free-lance Data Scientist, Oxford Internet Institute at Oxford University).
“How does changing the medium change the way of doing things?” The University of Cape Town.
September 7, 2020
The University of Cape Town (UCT) hosted a challenging conversation focused on whether changing the medium changes the way of doing things. This event was the fifth in a series entitled Unleashing the new global university. Nagla Rizk gave a talk about how Covid-19 has radically changed the ways that universities do everything: research, teaching, social responsiveness, and internationalization. She discussed the opportunities and the challenges of the decentralization and disruption of existing internationalized power relations.
"Artificial Intelligence, Data, and Inequality in Egypt.....and Now? COVID-19"
June 24, 2020
uOttawa Centre for Law, Technology, and Society. CLTS Virtual talks.
In this talk, Nagla Rizk discussed challenges facing AI and inclusion in Egypt, including issues related to human resources, the enabling environment, and infrastructure. She zoomed in on data issues as they are most pertinent today in light of COVID-19. Moreover, she provided cases of data limitations – what she calls ‘data blindness’ and ‘data blur’- which have excluded women and others from receiving state relief during the pandemic. Nagla Rizk argued that the struggle of Egypt’s vulnerable communities amidst the pandemic is one example highlighting the dire need for a sharp lens that finely captures all data pixels to properly inform inclusive development policies. She touched on rays of hope and suggested areas for future research on data, AI, and inclusion in Egypt and the Middle East, with potential collaboration with global partners.
“When The Music’s Over - “Economic and Social Vulnerabilities”, Digital Asia Hub.
May 14, 2020
The hub initiated a series of online talks to discuss issues such as digital rights, governance and infrastructure, the use of ICT for development and civic engagement, and innovation. During the session titled “When The Music’s Over” Nagla Rizk made insightful remarks on the economic and social vulnerabilities exposed by the pandemic, in particular risks for informal workers and migrant labor.
Inclusive Development and the Fourth Industrial Revolution in MENA
February 10, 2020
AUC School of Business Forum: Roundtable organized and hosted by A2K4D.
A2K4D hosted a roundtable titled "Inclusive Development and the Fourth Industrial Revolution in MENA", as part of the AUC Business Forum, moderated by Dr. Nagla Rizk. Local, regional, and global participants from business, civil society, and academia discussed the key challenges for AI and inclusive development and how these can be mitigated. They also discussed the opportunities and way forward for the region and the role of researchers, policymakers, businesses, and civil society as agents of change for more inclusive development in MENA and in the Global South.
A2K4D Ninth Annual Workshop "Artificial Intelligence, Innovation, and Inclusion: What Prospects for the Middle East and Africa?".
October 14, 2019
A2K4D and our partners from Open African Innovation Research - Open AIR, and The Leverhulme Centre for the Future of Intelligence at The University of Cambridge presented at our Ninth Annual Workshop. The theme at that year was: Artificial Intelligence, Innovation, and Inclusion: What Prospects for the Middle East and Africa?
Artificial Intelligence and Inequality in the Middle East - Ethics of AI Lab Centre for Ethics, University of Toronto
May 13, 2019
Nagla Rizk at Business Forward's first anniversary: The role of the sharing economy in Egypt
December 3, 2018
Business Forward celebrated its first anniversary on December 3 under the umbrella theme of The DNA of Egypt’s real economy: A look forward. In her talk, founding director of the Access to Knowledge for Development Center (A2K4D), Nagla Rizk examines the interplay between the centripetal and centrifugal forces in the age of the digital economy, along with the pivotal role of the sharing economy in pushing the national economy forward and making it more competitive. She also discusses the importance of disseminating research to a broader audience.
A2K4D’s 8th Annual Workshop, ‘Digital Technologies, Innovation, and Inclusive Growth: Alternative Narratives.’
October 17, 2018
The center held its eighth annual workshop at Oriental Hall at AUC's Tahrir Campus from October 16-17, 2018. The workshop sessions were held over two afternoons, sharing outputs of A2K4D’s research over the past year. Discussion revolved around bringing the voice of Egypt, the MENA region, and Africa to global debates on issues such as innovation, data and artificial intelligence, the sharing economy, and gender - all from a developmental perspective.
Centre for Learning & Teaching 15th Anniversary: Nagla Rizk - Featured AUC Speaker
Feb 25, 2018
‘The Open African Innovation Research Partnership Transition Workshop’.
Open African Innovation Research Partnership (Open AIR).
February 8, 2018
Members of the Open African Innovation Research Partnership (Open AIR) gathered in Accra, Ghana to share research findings and discuss future research plans. The 3-day workshop aimed to integrate new members into the network’s structure and research activities. The workshop empowered and engaged the new and emerging researchers’ group (NERGs), through international experiences and research in the fields of innovation and knowledge governance. Most importantly, the workshop focused on deliberating the next phase of research for the coming two years.
Nagla Rizk on the Importance of Inclusion in AI, The Berkman Klein Center for Internet and Society, Harvard University
January 18, 2018
Our Founding Director, Nagla Rizk discussed the importance of inclusion in the development of Artificial Intelligence.
Africa Open Data Network
November 13, 2017
The Africa Open Data Network is a community of Africans and friends of Africa who believe in Africa's development agenda and the potential of open data to help achieve its development goals. A2K4D researchers, Nancy Salem, and Dalia Seif, represented AUC.
Open AIR New and Emerging Researchers Group (NERG), Open AIR
February 10, 2017
Open AIR is a unique collaborative network of researchers spread across 15 African countries, Canada, and elsewhere in the world researching innovation in Africa. Open AIR is providing new and emerging researchers with international experiences, industry linkages, and promising careers. Their New and Emerging Researchers Group (NERG) receive training and mentoring to help develop the talent of these Fellows, creating immediate jobs and long-term career opportunities by building lasting international and interdisciplinary relationships. For more information about the New and Emerging Researchers Group, click here.
Open AIR Research Theme: Knowledge and Innovation Metrics, Open AIR
January 30, 2017
Our Founding Director, Nagla Rizk and the Open AIR team looked at new ways of measuring innovation that will better reflect the realities of Africa and other countries in the world.
The Arab Networked Public Sphere: Social Mobilization Post-Revolutions
May 6, 2015
‘IP and Public Interest in North Africa’ Open AIR
December 24, 2013
Cape Town - This is a presentation to the combined third Global Congress on IP and the Public Interest and Open AIR Conference on Innovation and IP in Africa.
'African Copyright Legitimacy' Open AIR
December 9, 2013
This debate between Nagla Rizk, The American University in Cairo, and Ben Sihanya, the University of Nairobi, moderated by Chris Armstrong, University of the Witwatersrand, asks whether it is up to African creators, or to policymakers and administrators, to build the legitimacy of national copyright environments on the continent. This is a session from the combined 3rd Global Congress on IP and the Public Interest and Open AIR Conference on Innovation and IP in Africa.
Keynote speech at the Global Congress on Intellectual Property and the Public Interest, Rio De Janeiro
December 15, 2012
Egypt Open Source Software Forum, Information Technology Institute ITI Smart Village
22 November 2011
“Education, Freedom and Nation Building.” TEDx Talk, Tedx Carthage 2011, Carthage, Tunisia
March 19, 2011
Joseph Stiglitz "Creating a Learning Society: An Agenda for Dynamic Societies in Uncertain Times"
January 13, 2011
Doha Debates Panelist, Motion: "Education is worthless without freedom of speech", The Doha Debates BBC World, TV
January 8 and 9, 2009
Presentation at the Second Access to Knowledge Conference (A2K2), Yale law School, Session on "Mobilizing Industry for A2K"