Thierry Zomahoun is the president and chief executive officer of the African Institute for Mathematical Sciences (AIMS), and founder and chairman of the Next Einstein Forum (NEF), which helps foster collaboration among young African scientists. In an effort to raise Africa’s profile in how science and mathematics can address development challenges, Zomahoun is promoting NEF’s scientific programme as a platform to connect science, society and policy. He believes Africa is in a good position to lead the quantum tech revolution — which relies on computing that is based on quantum mechanics to advance data processing and technological breakthroughs — “by harnessing its scientific talent to define solutions that address problems peculiar to Africa and the developing world”.
Zomahoun talked with SciDev.Net during the 10th World Conference of Science Journalists (October 26-30) in San Francisco, United States.
This interview has been edited for clarity and brevity.
What role can Africa play in the quantum revolution?
I believe that Africa will play a big role. We are working on it and we want to make it possible for Africa to lead this technological revolution. If you look back, we missed the analogue and digital revolution. We are still trying to catch up with the digital revolution.