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African knowledge as a system: Towards global parity in knowledge production for democratization, socio-economic growth and human development

Andreas Velthuizen


This article is inspired by the need for African knowledge to deliver actionable outputs that would bring solutions to the challenges of Africa. Against this background, the author asks the question: What are the inputs, throughputs, outputs, drivers and enablers of an African knowledge system (AKS)? Departing from this question the author aims at identifying and defining elements of an African knowledge system that would deliver the knowledge production outputs for human development, socio-economic growth and global parity in Africa. The author applies the findings of the discussion to African practices, concluding about the 'endogenisation' of knowledge systems in Africa as part of the contemporary global knowledge system, providing relevant examples to support arguments. The author found that endogenised knowledge, embedded in African cultures integrated with inputs from global knowledge and other knowledge claims, are the main inputs into an AKS. These inputs are interpreted in a specific African context into value-driven, technologicallyenabled knowledge as outputs preparing the African people to engage with theĀ  challenges of the 21st century.

Keywords: African Knowledge Systems, endogenous knowledge, African development.