A group of 20 media experts are locked in a four-day retreat in the Southern Province to discuss the emerging communication technologies in Africa.
In an interview shortly after the round-table commenced, country director of Search for Common Ground in Rwanda (SFCG), Chris Plutte, said that the retreat that began Thursday, would table emerging media forms that can be incorporated in the existing ones.
“SFGC uses media to facilitate conversation; we are hence joining our colleagues in this forum to discuss emerging technologies that can be used to reinforce Rwanda’s and regional media capacity,” Plutte said.
During the round-table, the experts will ponder the links between radio and new communications technologies such as mobile phones and the Internet and subsequently design a new research project on radio and ICTs dubbed ‘Radio, Convergence and Development in Africa’.
Initiated by Canada’s Carleton University Centre for Media and Transitional Societies (CMTS) the research project will explore the connection between radio and other information communication technologies
This comes at a time when radio, a previous dominant media in Africa is slowly being overtaken by mobile phone penetration that has ushered in a significant change in interpersonal communications and potentially a change in the conventional broadcast medium of radio.
Since 2009, Carleton University has been involved in building capacity of the media in Rwanda and abroad, through its Centre for Media and Transitional Societies.