ICTs, Environmental Activism and Community Mobilization in Senegal, Kenya and South Africa

  • Tracy M. Tinga
  • Patrick D. Murphy
  • Emmanuel Septime Sessou
Part of the Global Transformations in Media and Communication Research - A Palgrave and IAMCR Series book series (GTMCR)


Within the broader trends of neoliberal globalization, this chapter explores the emergence of information and communication technologies (ICTs) in sub-Saharan Africa mediascapes, particularly in terms of how the affordances of these information sharing platforms are shaping citizens’ capacity to define and address their environmental realities. It presents three short case studies, VUMA Earth in Senegal, #Water 4 Cape Town in South Africa, and farming apps in Kenya, to illustrate how ICTs have engendered citizen-driven, multi-stakeholder environmental communication to adapt to climate change and related local ecological issues. As these cases reveal, ICTs have permitted citizens to mobilize in new ways through the elaboration of local and regional virtual communities and knowledge sharing to identify and tackle—not just become aware of—ecological problems. The chapter concludes by digesting the lessons of these examples of environmental communication, noting that while ICTs are quickly becoming essential tools for public involvement in sound environmental stewardship, they are also part of modernization, development, and globalization discourses that have been, and typically still are, anchored to exploitative relationships.


Africa AfriScout Global South ICTs Local knowledge Neoliberal globalization VUMA Earth Water 4 Cape Town 


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  • Tracy M. Tinga
    • 1
  • Patrick D. Murphy
    • 2
  • Emmanuel Septime Sessou
    • 2
  1. 1.Media and Communication StudiesUniversity of Maryland, Baltimore CountyBaltimoreUSA
  2. 2.Klein College of Media and CommunicationTemple UniversityPhiladelphiaUSA

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