Based on work over the last decade within Nairobi’s tech-for-good sector, followed by a year of ethnographic research within organizations in Nairobi’s research landscapes, “Postcolonial Objectivity: Reaching for Decolonial Knowledge Making in Nairobi” traces the contours and edges of what is considered to be good knowledge within an emergent regime of scientific representation in Kenya. I show how this regime, which I call postcolonial objectivity, can be better understood by drawing out how histories haunt the problem space; the idealized figures that shadow the problem space, how rising diversity expectations have played out, and modes of care and stewardship are practiced and idealized. A recurrent argument and goal of postcolonial objectivity is robust contextualization of knowledge. “Postcolonial Objectivity: Reaching for Decolonial Knowledge Making in Nairobi” scales between analyses of the geopolitics of translocal knowledge production and ethnographically rich descriptions of Kenyan histories of imperialism and post-war Development. These geohistories established the knowledge infrastructures that have created conditions where everyday research amongst particular communities in Nairobi are often experienced as extractive, externally-driven, and extroverted for a Western audience. If methodology is a way of being in the world, ultimately, my argument is enacted through my methodological approach of archive ethnography as well as collaborative authorship of the final textual form. In these ways, I demonstrate my own attempts towards postcolonial objectivity, working to build supporting technical infrastructure as an experimental space for collaborative effort to figure out what kinds of questions can be asked under postcolonial objectivity going forward.
We are a non profit organisation working at the intersection of culture and technology to provide digital solutions for African museums, libraries, archives and communities.
The Museum of British Colonialism is a joint uk/kenyan initiative founded to creatively communicate a more truthful account of British colonialism.
The Open Restitution Project is an Africa-led project seeking to open up access to information on restitution of African material culture and human ancestors, to empower all stakeholders involved to make knowledge-based decisions.
He says that it is possible for old cities to be smart with the right interventions, “but when they want to have ‘smart’ they build a new city. What should happen to the city that we have now, should we abandon it? What we try to do is to help people in existing cities, so that in 5 or 10 years those people will build their own smart cities, using their own technology that they developed,” Agbodjinou says.
Join this live conversation to hear the stories of two designers, Isatu Harrison and Maxwell Mutanda, from Sierra Leone and Zimbabwe. We will also be joined by Hannah Robinson, the lead at the British Council for architecture, design and fashion programmes across Sub Saharan Africa. In this session, we will discuss:
1. The circular economy in Sub-Saharan Africa. Who is pushing for this?
2. The role of design in the transition to a circular economy. What does this mean for a rapidly growing youth population?
3. Practical examples of stories and projects already taking place.