21 September 2018
This is the fourth edition of the Quartz Africa Innovators, our annual series identifying some of the most ambitious and imaginative minds on the continent. The 30 movers and thinkers on this list range across fields from the arts and science to technology and entrepreneurship and beyond.
They all have one thing in common: a burning drive to make an impact on their communities, countries—and ultimately the continent. It is the same impressive trait found with each of our innovators from 2015, 2016 and 2017.
We’ve never believed innovation is simply about technology and gadgets. It’s about innovative thinking in all areas—challenging norms and going past safe expectations. The kind of innovation that drives making strides to end a killer disease, change agriculture with technology or bend and blend artistic genres.
There’s a metaphorical arms race featuring Africa’s fast-growing population versus unemployment, rising non-communicable diseases and the impact of climate change, among other challenges. These issues need clear thinking, strong leaders and the kind of innovation you find when you go through this year’s list. These women and men show that talk of African solutions for African problems isn’t just a catchy meme. It’s very real and very important.