By Crisan Evans
Over the years I’ve watched developed nations continuously rising and aiming to achieve the future that we (the rest of the world) have been envisioning for many years – a future where robots walk among men and cars take to the skies. Though this future is still but a long awaited dream, developed countries continue to strive to make this dream a reality.
However, on the other side, what is happening with developing nations? Why are they stagnant? Why do they continue to depend on the technological advancements of developed nations for a future, instead of creating the future with their own hands?
I completely understand the idea that they lack the necessary resources that they need to move forward, but I believe that the developing nations should stop solely relying on the developed world and seek to become trendsetters and join the race to the future.
On Tuesday, September 29th, Prime Minister Andrew Holness called on world leaders to assist developing nations to improve their digital capabilities. I believe that this is the first step to a new beginning – seeking help. Since COVID-19, more than ever, the world has been dependent on digital technology, and this only shows the differences in technological capabilities between the developed and developing nations. The developed world has done so much, and it is time for us, as a developing nations to step up and become great innovators. We’ve been aiming for the future but not moving towards it because we are so reliant on the developed nations whose successes we ‘piggy-back’ on.
We have not created any technology that can be of use to the world. Thus, we remain reliant on the technologies created by developed nations. Don’t you believe that it is time that we do? Technological giants such as Apple, Alphabet Inc, Facebook, Amazon, and Microsoft have been making strides in the United States in creating new technologies that drive the world forward, whether it be through e-commerce, transportation, robotics, or artificial intelligence.
Da-Jiang Innovations (DJI) Technology, a Chinese company, took the world by storm when they launched their drones and camera technologies, and now they own 74% of the world’s consumer market, as of 2018. We have the human resources that are capable to push us forward and leave a behemoth footprint in the new world of technological advancement. We just need to make the first step towards becoming not just an ideological nation but also a technology-driven one.
I believe that we, as developing nations, need to create a collective Research and Development Ministry, whose mandate is to drive the technological divide between the developing and the developed nations to an end. This sector would be responsible specifically for researching and developing various technologies, whether it be for transportation, e-commerce, agriculture, medicine, or data-security. This might sound like a joke to some people as they believe that small developing countries such as Jamaica are too poor and should be focusing more on getting the latest technologies.
Through this action, I believe that we will take a step away from being dependent on developed nations and become a nation that others can also depend on because of our technological advancement. Just imagine: Jamaica creating a social media network that rivals both Facebook and Instagram? Or creating an electricity-run car that rivals Tesla’s electric cars. Is something like this possible? Yes, it is.
Instagram was created with limited resources and it was able to grow until it became a prime competitor to both Facebook and Snapchat. The internet has made the same technologies, resources, and software available to us as to any other country. All we need to do is to utilize them in the same way. We can become pioneers if we strive for it instead of becoming reliant.
Crisan Evans is a content creator and journalist whose passion lies in unravelling stories, reading, and writing poetry and other creatives. She completed her studies in Journalism at CARIMAC, UWI and wants to contribute to changes in society through her journalism career.
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