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06 Jan 2022

Harambee: The Spirit of Innovation in Africa

Human Sciences Research Council (HSRC)

Full title: Harambee

Subtitle: The spirit of innovation in Africa

Authors: Mike Bruton

Publication: November 2021

ISBN (soft cover): 978-1-928246-41-1

Format: 235 x 168mm

Extent: 383 pp 

Price: R495

About the book

Is this Africa’s century? How many inventions have been made in Africa? Is the nature of innovation in Africa different from elsewhere? Do you know the difference between ‘tef’ and ‘TEF’, or a SolarTurtle, a Turtle car from Ghana and a satellite-tagged loggerhead turtle? How many African countries have produced their own cars? Why is the M-Pesa mobile money system so important?

Harambee: The spirit of innovation in Africa answers these and many other questions by showcasing the resourcefulness and resilience of people in Africa as they search for solutions to the pressing problems they face daily. This remarkable book is the first of its kind – over 800 inventions and innovations by more than 600 innovators from 50 African countries are discussed, and a variety of issues related to innovation are debated. From mompreneurs to moguls, waste pickers to fintech wizards, locust whisperers to rocket scientists, robocops to internet-enabled balloons, surfing therapy to gin flavoured with elephant dung, seshweshwe cloth to microsatellites, you will be astounded by the creativity of the continent’s techpreneurs. This book is a must-read for anyone interested in the future of Africa.

“Mike’s vast experience across multiple disciplines has equipped him to write with  authority and boundless enthusiasm about African innovation, to explain how it has shaped the continent and how it continues to change the lives of billions. In this book, he pulls together disparate threads from many different perspectives to produce a fascinating compendium that the reader will consume in the best possible way.”
Alan Duggan
Founding editor of the sci-tech magazine Popular Mechanics (South Africa)

Human Sciences Research Council (HSRC)

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