IGF 2018 WS #276
The Social Tech

Organizer 1: Civil Society, Western European and Others Group (WEOG)
Organizer 2: Private Sector, Western European and Others Group (WEOG)

Speaker 1: Thierry Barbaut, Private Sector, Western European and Others Group (WEOG)
Speaker 2: Pierre-louis Rolle, Government, Western European and Others Group (WEOG)
Speaker 3: Raphael Lurois, Private Sector, Western European and Others Group (WEOG)


Round Table - 90 Min


The discussion will, first, focus on the questioning of the concept of social tech in the measure that each intervenant may have his very own definition of this thought.

Louis-Pierre ROLLE is working in the digital agency for the Economic and Financial ministry of France. He is actually working on new development and innovation means that differ from the hyper-growth. It includes a cooperative of collective - leaded by the French State- interest that links different actors of the digital mediation. He is also working on digital ethics questions and the participation of public actors. His view could give the global vision of French manner of encouraging social tech fort the first part of the discussion.

Caroline Corbal who is working on online democracy issues. This expert might give a concret thought about the social tech and the role of internet. She is involve in the development of several initiative for transparency, open data base, and collaboration.

Thierry Barbaut and Raphael Loris are both expert in the question of digital development in African sub-Saharan countries with a field vision as they are working directly with the project's holders in those countries. This is interesting because they are aware of the needs of the project's holders as the needs of the populations but also they have in mind the background in witch is evolving this actors.

I have in mind to invite Kako Nubukpo, an economist and the ex chef of the digital economic direction of the International Organization of "Francophonie" (French-speakers institution). He was also Minister in the Togolese government, few years ago. I already talk to him about my submission project but I don't have his official approval for register him as participant of this round table. His approach might lays the emphasis on global institutional means to promote social tech in the light of the French manners and the African sub-saharan manners.

I also have in mind to invite, Laure de la Raudiere. She is working on the development of digital economy in France and for several subject as the neutrality of the net.


The diversity in this round table is balanced by the fact that I asked to two women to join the discussion. They are highly qualified and worked on the emergence of female in this pro-male sector.
Also, I asked to one Togolese citizen to join us in the discussion.

The fact is that I believe they will be interest in the initiative, and I am waiting for an official acceptance that will define if this round table will almost reach the parity in terms of gender.

I carried on privileging participants that are not from the same groups or domains on analysis or action.

1st part of the discussion:

Debate on the definition of the notion of "social tech"

 The questioning of the concept of "social tech"
 Is digital technology an area of ​​technology that only rhymes with business?
 Business and social, an opposition that tends to be absorbed by digital?
 The "social tech" or the "stooge" of the digital?

2nd part of discussion:

"French tech": at the crossroads of the digital economy and the social and solidarity economy.

 Can the digital economy become a "social and solidarity digital economy"?
 The dynamics of "social tech": a model for the future in France
 Who are the actors? (State, Large groups, Start up, associations)
 The consumer in social technology (social welfare?)

3rd part of the discussion:

The "social tech": the solution for the states of French-speaking sub-Saharan Africa?
Find two examples of French-speaking African countries that are laying the groundwork for a "social tech"

 Who are the actors?
 Is official development aid acting in this domain?
 How to develop the social digital business when the state is not involved?

4th part of the discussion:

Think about "social tech" within the actions of Francophone institutions?

 OIF and its operators: how do they encourage social tech (institutional approach)
 How can the Francophone space conquer this model of development (especially in opposition to the Anglophone area)?

The discussion is divided in four part. I think it is important to let the time to the participant to give his view and balanced with questions from the moderator (prepared earlier), questions from the member of the round table. At this end of each part of discussion, the moderator will have to turn to the audience and to get the online questions in order to give them the chance to get a lightning or an answer. That is the reason why, I presume that a round table is the best way to discuss about this subject: the participants can speak together as an informal discussion but it also include the fact every body have to speak, including the audience. Also, the moderator is settle at this table so it gives importance to her voice. Also, we can imagine a system of direct message between the moderator and the online moderator provide by a tablet.

The issue raised by the subject "Social tech" is dealing with both economic and social considerations. The concept of social tech might seen unclear. The digital economy goes hand with hand with a liberal approach of the economy : a business management with a non holistic approach. But more and more, digital transformations imply common good in the sense of social benefit. In what extant the digital transformation could be seen as a social improvement beyond the business experience that it represents for now? This issue lays the emphasis on the digital experience in developed countries as in less developed countries. This is interesting to poursuit on this approach in order to see who are the actors and how the social tech is promote on this very different zones of the world.In order to illustrate this paradigm, the issue is focused on the "francophone zone" particularly in France and in African subsaharan countries. The goal is to embrace a dynamic approach which included both French and African vision of the social tech.

Several questions raised:

Can we think of the concept of "social tech" ? How can we bring digital technology to general interest?
Who are the actors involved in this concept?
Under which model can this concept be illustrated in the French-speaking developed countries? How is this dynamic addressed in these countries?
Under which model does this concept stand out in French-speaking sub-Saharan Africa?
How to promote social entrepreneurs in sub-Saharan Africa?
How to crystallize this dynamic within the institutions of the "Francophonie"?
How to create a link of cooperation or partnership between the French-speaking developed countries and the French-speaking states of sub-Saharan Africa?
How to make Francophone space, a driving force of this concept?

The discussion might achieve in :

 Promote the technological dynamic to respond to the general interest including examples that illustrate the major role of internet as a technology that permit social welfare.
 Use the example of French-speaking developed countries: how do digital technologies for social purpose develop?
 Reflect on scenarios that would seem possible in less developed countries
 Bringing together to enter a NORTH / SOUTH partnership dynamic

Online Participation

As Jacques ngatse Obala, one of the member of the organization, is webmaster and the owner of an online media, we have planned give to him this responsibility. He would have to centralize the online questions and to transmit it to moderator at the round table. We can also planned a forum website open for the subject in order to sensibilized about the subject and it might permit a efficient treatment of the online questions.