AI Governance for Africa Toolkit - Regional and International Frameworks

Published 29/11/2023

Authors: Thomson Reuters Foundation, ALT Advisory

As AI systems become increasingly embedded in everyday life, they raise important questions about regulation, ethics, and their potential impact on human rights. These questions find form in debates about the governance of AI – how do we provide protection without stifling innovation? How can the law keep pace with the evolving nature of AI? Should AI be governed internationally or domestically?

Despite the complexity of AI governance, it is clearly a global concern. Countries are at different phases of resolving these questions and have implemented a range of governance instruments in response to concerns.

This toolkit unpacks the context of AI governance, in Africa and globally, and considers advocacy approaches for future governance. It does so in the following ways:

Part 1 examines existing AI governance instruments in Africa with a particular focus on the East African Community. This chapter outlines continental responses and details existing governing measures in Africa.

Part 2 unpacks existing international governance measures. In doing so it considers governance trends and important considerations included in governance instruments.

Part 3, which is a separate document, explores a series of key questions for the design of advocacy strategies on AI governance, particularly in African contexts.

The aim of the toolkit is to empower journalists and civil society organisations to inform public discourse, drive policy and regulatory change and advocate for ethical and responsible AI deployment.

Related resources:

AI Governance for Africa Toolkit - Building Advocacy Strategies

  • Thomson Reuters Foundation, ALT Advisory

  • 29/11/2023

As AI systems become increasingly embedded in everyday life, they raise important questions about regulation, ethics, and their potential impact on human rights. These questions find form in debates about the governance of AI – how do we provide protection without stifling innovation? How can the law keep pace with the evolving nature of AI? Should AI be governed internationally or domestically?

Despite the complexity of AI governance, it is clearly a global concern. Countries are at different phases of resolving these questions and have implemented a range of governance instruments in response to concerns.

This toolkit unpacks the context of AI governance, in Africa and globally, and considers advocacy approaches for future governance. It does so in the following ways:

Part 1 examines existing AI governance instruments in Africa with a particular focus on the East African Community. This chapter outlines continental responses and details existing governing measures in Africa.

Part 2 unpacks existing international governance measures. In doing so it considers governance trends and important considerations included in governance instruments.

Part 3, which is a separate document, explores a series of key questions for the design of advocacy strategies on AI governance, particularly in African contexts.

The aim of the toolkit is to empower journalists and civil society organisations to inform public discourse, drive policy and regulatory change and advocate for ethical and responsible AI deployment.


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