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Our vision: A single market for digital innovation in Africa and Europe

Digital innovation is sparking new opportunities for sustainable development, new jobs, more inclusive processes, and improved living standards. The African European Digital Innovation Bridge (AEDIB) Initiative takes up this potential in a concerted, human-centric way, by strengthening digital and innovation ecosystems in Africa and promoting intercontinental cooperation between stakeholders in Africa and Europe.

AEDIB’s vision is to create a single market for digital innovation in Africa and Europe.


Through AEDIB, a flagship initiative under the Digital for Development Hub (D4D Hub), the European Commission, European Union Member States and AEDIB’s partners on the African continent will foster intercontinental cooperation and joint projects between innovators. AEDIB will help facilitate the launch and scale-up of innovative African small and medium-sized enterprises and will support them on their digital transformation path, fostering innovation made in Africa.

AEDIB will focus on four areas:

1. Creating a Pan-African network of Digital Innovation Hubs

AEDIB will support the establishment and capacity development of a Pan-African Network of Digital Innovation Hubs (DIHs) which will provide access to the latest knowledge, expertise and technology to support companies in piloting, testing and experimenting with digital innovations. These hubs will help create a unified innovation ecosystem and will facilitate access to finance.

2. Supporting digital entrepreneurship and the development of digital skills in Africa

Common standards for the development of technological and entrepreneurial skills, along with enhanced capacity building, will allow stakeholders like SME (small and medium-sized enterprises) staff and management, startups, young workers and women entrepreneurs to succeed in an increasingly digitalised economy.

3. Facilitating accessible financing for digital entrepreneurs

To help create the systemic conditions that support the creation and growth of digital and innovative enterprises, the lack of access to adequate financial instruments should be addressed. A pan-African approach should be sought to sourcing and managing funds which will create and ensure economies of scale.

4. Fostering the growth and resilience of innovation ecosystems

Support for policy development and transcontinental joint ventures will draw on the exchange of experiences and on joint learning, leading to common practices and policy approaches as well as effective evidence- and data-driven instruments. This can be achieved by establishing a pan-African support mechanism focusing on ecosystem building and Technology and Innovation policy, and by encouraging collaboration and joint innovation ecosystem partnerships and projects between European and African digital and innovation stakeholders.