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300 young people trained at African Metaverse Academy

The Africa Metaverse Summit is scheduled for 1 to 3 June this year. Photo: Supplied/Ventureburn
The Africa Metaverse Summit is scheduled for 1 to 3 June this year. Photo: Supplied/Ventureburn

More than 300 young people in 15 African countries are set to benefit from free Metaverse training programmes offered by 3D Netinfo and its partners, the inspiration behind the first African Metaverse Academy.

The training opportunities will be in so-called Metaverse professions, including blockchain, cryptocurrency, artificial intelligence, non-fungible tokens, virtual reality, 3D, gaming, and design.

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Also, organisers say that through the Africa Metaverse Summit from 1 to 3 June this year, it will “show that Africa is not behind, that there are many projects underway, and tell Africans that it is Africa’s time, and that we must believe in it and seize together the opportunities that the Metaverse offers us.”

Even though the concept of the Metaverse may seem far from African realities, it seems to be more than a simple trend and is becoming a key element of today’s and tomorrow’s digital world, organisers say in a media release.

Large companies seem to see a huge potential and are investing in it – even if this virtual universe fascinates as much as it worries.

“With the advent of the Metaverse, of Web 3.0, the question that arises today, what will be Africa’s place?” organisers ask. “Will it simply be a consumer or an actor, will it be associated with the development of this virtual world that will impact it or will it have to accept it without reacting, and have a model imposed on it? Should we resign ourselves to not taking part in this competition, which is already modelling the world of tomorrow?”

Despite the obstacles and challenges, the research firm Analysis Group indicates that the Metaverse will inject an additional $40 billions into the gross domestic product (GDP) of sub-Saharan Africa within a decade.

A forum dedicated to the Metaverse

It is to answer these questions that 3D Netinfo Premiere, Africa’s creative digital coding school and the DigiArt Living Lab innovation centre in Tunisia, is organising the first Africa Metaverse Summit. Many international sponsors are on board, including Epic Games, Autodesk, Nvidia, Binance as well as African partners and networks in the digital and creative industries such Africa in Colors and Afric’Up.

“Our ambition with this forum is to evaluate the social, philosophical, technological, cultural, political and economic aspects of these alternative virtual and immersive worlds. Through testimonies and exchanges between entrepreneurs, actors, creators, African and international we will try to identify the issues,” organisers say.

Focusing on “culture, heritage, education, experiences and interaction”, this first virtual forum dedicated to the Metaverse, will bring a real educational dimension, will promote ownership, sharing, inform and raise awareness on the challenges and opportunities for our continent.

An exciting element of the initiative is the “Let’s build the African Metaverse community,” a project initiated by Netinfo and supported by Epic Games as part of Epic MegaGrants, Autodesk, Nvidia, Binance, and the Tezos Foundation.

This project will be implemented in partnership with companies, schools, universities, and organizations from more than 16 countries. South Africa, Benin, Burkina Faso, Ivory Coast, Cameroon, Congo, Gabon, Ghana, Kenya, Mali, Niger, Democratic Republic of Congo, Rwanda, Senegal, Togo, Tunisia and many others are on board.

The “Let’s build the African Metaverse community” is mostly digital in nature although 20% of the activities will be held in-person. The project will run for eight months commencing in July 2022.

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