Advancing African Geostrategy From a Global Perspective Through Geospatial Intelligence

The most competitive governments, companies, and organizations are transforming their performance, decision-making, and growth by unlocking the hidden value of their geospatial data. Geospatial intelligence allows the creation of new innovative services. With billions of connected sensors present in many products and many places around the African continent, business and organizational leaders know that the value of geospatial intelligence lies in its vast amounts of data.

Geospatial data for sustainability and development

The combination of connected objects and artificial intelligence mechanisms makes it possible to consider in the coming years very advanced applications for decision support for all sectors of the market. As geolocation is a crucial aspect of geospatial data, a modern Geographic Information System, powered by real-time data, is an operational tool for geospatial services to ingest large streams of data from fixed or mobile devices and perform real-time spatial analysis that generates immediate geographic information. The geospatial platforms connect to an ecosystem that allows to merge data and create geospatial services to innovate, engage customers and monetize data while ensuring sustainability in all business decisions.

There are already public infrastructures, sensors, and networks, which open up new business opportunities by offering different degrees of accuracy, reduced cost, and unmatched autonomy for multiple uses. Geolocation data is essential to support green finance and reduce our carbon footprint. It will be a key factor in ensuring that we meet the growing global challenges of climate change and reach net-zero while enabling us to see the world as a better place for current generations and posterity. The challenge in the next few years will be to deploy predictive and decision intelligence to the connected objects themselves, transforming them into autonomous objects.

Geospatial intelligence for technological innovation and inclusion

5G technology is increasing geolocation intelligence as it dramatically improves the speed and accuracy of data transfer, making mobility analysis even faster and more accurate. Geographic patterns allow to predict sensor movements, share data and make decisions quickly to reduce costs, ensure availability, increase performance and capacity, and improve security of your operations. Computer calculations that rely on huge masses of data would always be performed in overloaded compute clusters in remote data centers.

The pandemic was a major disruption that not only exposed several underlying flaws but also led to technological innovation and also required a reorientation of many processes. Companies now have the opportunity to evolve from a reactive to a proactive mode thanks to the geospatial technologies that allow remote and real-time access to business data at a lower cost and to carry the energy needed to integrate powerful computing systems, which facilitates the deployment of computer models within them.

Advancing the future of African geostrategy

The increase in the availability and application of geolocation data has enriched geostrategic decisions on the African continent. This facilitated greater operational efficiency in the business and private sectors while increasing their scope for expansion and globalization. The Internet of Things and geolocation now combine to revolutionize security, profitability and create value for businesses on the continent. The deployment of objects and data collected will lead to very advanced uses, opening the door to all geospatial intelligence infrastructure, as long as a powerful processing cluster is available to explore the data for a very high level of precision and geotracking.

Geospatial intelligence is centralized in a data center far from the objects, and the network is an essential and limiting element for the creation of reliable autonomous objects. These new geospatial technologies open up the field of possibilities for providing geolocation intelligence in external and internal environments for companies. If the existing geolocation technologies already allow the provision of services in delimited perimeters, the resulting model can be integrated directly into standalone objects if it is light enough and consumes little in terms of resources. 

Expected to be worth around $6 trillion by 2024, the e-commerce market makes extensive use of geolocation and intelligence in its analytics to improve the digital customer experience. Although predictive maintenance, asset tracking, fleet control of materials and equipment are essential to enter the era of factories and companies 4.0, companies find in geospatial technologies, ways to reduce their costs, but above all to reinvent the way they work. With real-time geofencing, mobile sensors that provide the exact information at the right time and place, all predictive intelligence are deployed to applications that run on the server-side and that use computer models. 

[Image courtesy: Gerd Altmann / Pixabay]

Manuel Ntumba is Chief Global Strategist at Tod’Aérs Global Network (TGN). He is a Strategic Advisor in Geostrategy, Geospatial Intelligence, and Globalization — providing expertise and consultancy to private sectors, and to governments of emerging market economies worldwide, especially in Africa, Asia-Pacific, the Caribbean, and Latin America. The professional portfolio of Manuel Ntumba includes collaborations with the European Union (EU), the United Nations (UN), The African Union (AU)’s Presidential Panel of 2021, and many other governments,  universities, international organizations, and multinational companies.

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