The fourth installment of the Quartz Innovators list is out and this year, 30 visionaries making big moves in a vast array of sectors have been named. According to Quartz, "They all have one thing in common: a burning drive to make an impact on their communities, countries—and ultimately the continent." They are the future of the continent. When Barack Obama was President of the United States, he gave African countries a nugget they need to take seriously, "Ultimately, Africa’s prosperity depends on Africa’s greatest resource—it’s people." With the growing recognition of innovators in the continent, there is a clear drive towards encouraging Africa's greatest resource to benefit its base first.
In this year's list are: Jojo Abot, Oshiorenoya Agabi, Onyeka Akumah, Nabila Alibhai, Bibi Bakare-Yusuf, Moustapha Cisse, Abdigani Diriye, Tania Douglas, YaAdam Fye, Kamau Gachigi, Brian Gitta, Brenda Katwesigye, Zelalem Kibret, Dieuveil Malonga, Koketso Moeti, Tshepo Moloi, Hilda Moraa, Nthabiseng Mosia, Carl Joshua Ncube, Fredros Okumu, Newton Owino, Tokini Peterside, Gregory Rockson, Charles Rotimi, Moinina David Sengeh, Nora Shawki, Mamadou Gorou Sidibe, Sherrie Silver, Conrad Tankou and Ghada Wali. Nigeria has the lion's share of the 2018 Innovators, with five while Kenya and South Africa are a joint second with four Innovators apiece. A total of 13 fired up ladies made the list with 17, obviously being their male counterparts.
An interesting inclusion is Sherrie Silver whose prowess in choreography might have earned Childish Gambino his first Billboard Hot 100 number 1 earlier this year. Her inclusion, along with those of other artsy individuals makes for a very interesting understanding of what the innovation of the future shall be. Everyone is welcome to the big tent. Carl Joshua Ncube is a comedian who made the masses laugh through tough times under Mugabe's regime in Zimbabwe. Those were not just jokes, those were war-cries from a tiring populace. Tokini Peterside in Lagos is also leading an Art-charge having launched an international art fair hosted in Lagos.
From the more traditional innovations in the sphere of science and technology is a number of driven individuals whose inventions and discoveries are shockingly relevant. Fredos Okumu is fighting one of humanity's smallest enemies: the mosquito and he is winning. Nthabiseng Mosia has an answer to Africa's energy crisis - providing solar powered products. Brenda Katwesigye, on the other hand, is bringing eye-care to those who could not have accessed it before. In short, Africa's most pressing problems are all under siege. Innovators are not sleeping. They are devising ways and means to tell a different story about the continent.
The full list and details of the innovators are available on the Quartz website.
Header Image: Quartz Africa