Africa will soon be home to the largest workforce in the world. Vast numbers of people will live and work in urban settlements that don’t yet exist. They will need jobs, housing, food, water, energy, health care, education and community. Yet with woefully inadequate infrastructure today, Africa must turn to more inclusive economic models.
In 2015, Mark Carney, the former governor of the Bank of England, famously coined the phrase ‘the tragedy of the horizon’. Referring to the impact of climate change, his concept can be equally applied to the social ills in Africa today, imposing a cost on future generations that the current generation has no direct incentive to fix.
The challenges in transforming economic models run deep. Public funds currently contribute far less than the projected capital required to achieve inclusive development, while private capital remains at a loss as to how to address inclusion in a manner consistent with traditional investment dynamics, behaviours and biases.