AI Expo Africa 2020 ONLINE event was a massive success. In spite of COVID, we gathered 1500+ delegates, 500+ companies and 80+ speakers to join us online for a two day live and thirty day OnDemand show in September. Building a bridge from academia to industry, and including young engineers and entrepreneurs is a key part of our mission to create an “AI Powered Future For Africa”. Feedback from our delegates is key and helps to shape our programmes, one such success story is that of Martha Teiko Teye from Ghana who joined our 30 day OnDemand event.
The online format was chosen for this edition of AI Expo Africa 2020 due to the restrictions around hosting face-2-face events in light of the COVID pandemic. We held a 2 day live event and 30 day OnDemand show which served as a learning archive free of charge to delegates from our community partners, headline numbers were as follows;
- 77,557 Platform visits at Live Show (82,388 including OnDemand show)
- Delegate diversity 32% Female 68% Male
- 80 speakers from 13 countries represented in the speaking programme (30% Female 70% Male)
- 34 ePosters presented for 6x Innovation Challenges from 7 countries (45% Female 55% Male)
- A total of 45 countries were represented at the show
Who are you ?
I am Martha Teiko Teye, a Ghanaian female currently pursuing an MSc. Computer Science Degree at KNUST. I also work as a Technology Analyst and Head of AI Operations at Inter-regional Bridge Group Ghana and Zlitch Technologies Limited respectively.
Why did you attend AI Expo Africa ONLINE?
A few days to the AI Expo event, I had an invite by Alliance4AI to exhibit at the booth as well as talk about our work on the Gathering of AI leaders. Going through the program outline, I realized I could also benefit greatly from most of the sessions after my time at the booth. My main reasons for attending was to listen to some keynotes and speakers of interest, meet and learn more about other attendees/companies.
What value did you get from joining a large industry event like AI Expo Africa?
I made several connections within two days which I deem priceless and I’m certain of meeting other relevant stakeholders as time goes on. I also attended the lab session by Microsoft AI labs on Microsoft Azure ML which I found really educative. Again, I loved the presentations by Renee Cummings and Neil Sahota because they directly relate to the ethics discussions within the Gathering of AI leaders meet-up.
How has this changed your perspective about industry and career path?
I have always been concerned about job prospects for individuals in Africa who take up courses related to AI. But during the AI Expo, I was exposed to more African-based companies/startups that actually solve challenges using AI and also hire AI and Machine Learning local experts. I look forward to seeing more relevant use cases of AI from these startups.
Overall – was it a very positive experience?
Initially, I was contemplating on joining some sessions because of other commitments, however I ended up clearing part of my schedule to participate even more, because I loved almost every session I participated in. I also loved the idea of it being virtual since I literally did not have to run in order not to miss sessions and I could comfortably participate without any major challenge.
Would you recommend young students/graduates/entrepreneurs attend such events?
Of course, yes. With such a great speaker selection and the workshops/lab sessions provided, students, graduates and entrepreneurs would be able to learn more about innovative and optimized ways of building AI models. AI Expo creates a platform to network, learn and show your work to the entire world, which is a good stepping stone for all students and professionals.
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