Casablanca Statement on ICT Localisation in Africa

From: Donald Z. Osborn (
Date: Tue Jun 21 2005 - 10:16:37 CDT

  • Next message: Asmus Freytag: "Re: Arabic letters separated by markup"

    The PanAfrican Localisation workshop held in Casablanca, June 13-15, brought
    together localisation experts and representatives of localisation projects from
    various countries in Africa and some beyond. We considered the state of
    localisation on the continent, key issues (including among others, Unicode,
    standardisation of orthographies, and keyboards), and ideas for facilitating
    and advancing localisation efforts. The meeting also produced a brief
    declaration (below). URLs for the sponsoring and collaborationg agencies and
    for the project webpage follow. (Pardon the cross-posts.)

    Don Osborn
    Coordinator of the PanAfrican Localisation Project

    Pan African Localisation Workshop

    Casablanca Statement

    African localisation experts met in Casablanca in a workshop organised by
    Kabissa with Bisharat under IDRC funding, and in collaboration with MTDS and
    the Casablanca Technopark centre. The event benefitted from contributions from
    the Moroccan Minister-Delegate to the Prime Minister in Charge of General and
    Economic Affairs, the Canadian Ambassador to Morocco, and experts from other

    After three days of work, the participants in the meeting reached the following
    * Limiting people to the use of information and communication technology (ICT)
    in a foreign language tends to exacerbate the digital divide; makes ICT
    adoption long, difficult, and expensive; and impoverishes local culture.
    * Localisation makes ICT more accessible to everybody, including users from
    rural areas and young students, reinforcing the importance of our culture and
    helping us preserve our identity.
    * Localisation of ICT into indigenous African languages is therefore key to
    rapid and fair development in Africa.
    * For localisation to succeed and have its maximum impact in society,
    collaboration among governments, civil society, educators, linguists, computer
    professionals, standards organisations and development agencies is necessary.

    We, the participants, commit ourselves to promoting this vision and working
    towards social development in Africa through ICT localisation.

    Casablanca, 15 June 2005

    Casablanca Technopark
    PanAfrican Localisation Project

    For further information, write:

    This archive was generated by hypermail 2.1.5 : Tue Jun 21 2005 - 10:21:41 CDT