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What Africa must do to Tap STI Potential for African Development?

Disclaimer:  The information and opinions expressed on this page do not necessarily reflect the views of the ATPS Network.

Posted on 25th November, 2012by Prof. ATPS Admin

In order to harness the resource potential for productivity improvement in Africa, urgent and significant investments is required in Science, Technology and Innovation (STI) education and research to build indigenous capacities-both human  and institutional- for appropriate technology development, this emerged during the international roundtable and recommendations on emerging paradigms, technology and innovation for sustainable development.

Contributing to what Africa must do to tap STI potential for African development, the panelists called for the need for Africa to lead its own dialogue and proactively invest in the required capacities.

Prof. Shaukat Abdulrazak, the chair of ATPS board noted that it is high time Africa stop giving lip service to STI issue but to start taking appropriate actions including investing one per cent of countries’ GDP to support research.

“There should be deliberate efforts in building human and institutional capacity,” said Prof. Abdulrazak.

He called for continued dialogue between policy makers and scientists to enable STI issues to take roots in Africa.

Demystification of science in the society in areas of biotechnology and nanotechnology is one key item that Prof. Abdulrazak emphasized.

According to Peggy Oti-Boateng, the senior programme specialist for Science and Technology at United Nation Education, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), more emphasis should be put on the way to conserve water, energy efficiency and making them available to all.

Prof.Turner Isoun, the deputy chair of ATPS board noted that it is important for Africa to access frontline technologies including biotechnology, nanotechnology and nuclear technology to fast track Africa’s development.

He also called on African universities to have reforms in their curriculum and R&D activities to perform and contribute effectively in African development.

“There is need to introduce Information, Communication and Technology into primary, secondary and tertiary to enhance education,” he said.

The panellists called for more action to be taken rather than just talking.

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