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In-country and joint AUDA-NEPAD & SADC training workshop for Seychelles |22 March 2022

A joint AUDA-NEPAD & SADC training workshop for Seychelles on Research and Innovation Measurement and Digitalisation Workshop was held here last week in collaboration with United Nations Conference on Trade and Development.

The African Union Development Agency (AUDA) New Partnership for Africa’s Development (Nepad) and Southern African Development Community (Sadci) training workshop took place the Savoy Resort & Spa.

This workshop was attended by high-ranking delegates like the Minister for Investment, Entrepreneurship and Industry Devika Vidot; Dr Monica Idinoba, principal programme officer AU commission; collaborators of experts from AUDA-NEPAP, SADC, AOSTI, SANBio; Professor John Mugabe of the University of Pretoria; Dr Neo Molotja, senior R&D specialist from South Africa; Dr Almamy Konte, former Ag executive director OASTI; and participants from Zimbabwe.

Its main objectives were focused on the rationale behind the establishment of the African Science Technology and Innovation Indicators (ASTII) programme:

(a) sustain/develop and cause the adoption of internationally compatible science, technology and innovation (STI) indicators;

(b) sustain/build human and institutional capacities for STI indicators and related surveys;

(c) enable African countries to participate in international programmes for STI indicators; and

(d) inform African countries on the state of STI in Africa.

“As agreed during the ongoing consultative meetings between AUDA-Nepad, the Sadc secretariat and Seychelles, more attention will be given to the innovation segment and the revised R&D questionnaires in Excel will be piloted as a pre-requisite to the ASTII digitisation process. The process will help the coordinating team of Seychelles produce R&D indicators on an annual basis necessary to track the level of investment in R&D in the Sadc region needed my ministers of education and STI,” explained Xavier Estico, director general in the division for science, technology and innovation (DSTI) within the Ministry of Investment, Entrepreneurship and Industry.

Mr Estico also expressed that data are as important as in their storage and dissemination for evidence-based decision-making, policies and strategies as well as supporting the commercialisation of scientific knowledge for socio-economic growth and development. “We are also working on a digitalised system for storage and dissemination of all scientific data known as the National Knowledge Management Engagement Platform so that we can be more effective in using survey results for informed decision-making, evidence-based policies, strategies, as well as the commercialisation of scientific findings for sustainable and resilient socio-economic development through our business technology and innovation incubator (BTI) and other innovation ecosystem. We cannot achieve this without a digitalized STI measurement system for a more integrated local, regional and continental development. However, the political will and support to achieve this cannot be overemphasised at this crossroad, especially now as we reinvent ourselves out the Covid-19 pandemic,” said Mr Estico.

At this juncture, he concluded, we can no longer only rely on the executive arm of our governments; we need the support of our parliaments. It was to this purpose that in your last meeting in Seychelles in May 2018, we organised for you to meet with the leaders of our National Assembly to brief them on the exercise. We wish to sustain this effort under the leadership of the new government to achieve our objectives to building STI capacities and capabilities at local, regional and continental level to live up to ‘The Africa we want’; the inspiration of AU Agenda 2063 not as a catching up continent but one that also leads in STI.

The topics below were covered to accommodate newly appointed enumerators or to serve as a revision for all former ASTII experts to serve as focal points in their respective institutions during future surveys.

a) History of STI measurement and international guidelines/frameworksfor R&D and innovation data collection

b) African experience in STI measurement: AOSTI and ASTII

c) Other STI measurement initiatives: scoreboard, informal sector and global innovation index

d) Concept and definitions: scientific and technological activities (R&D included) and innovation:

e) Link between STI measurement and policies

f) Methodologies for the measurement of research and experimental development (R&D) and innovation

g) Revised R&D and innovation survey instruments: Standard suestionnaires

h) Processing R&D survey data/analysis and dissemination of core indicators (inclusive ofreporting template).

Compiled by Vidya Gappy

Article Source: Seychelles Nation Newspaper

Article Link : https://www.nation.sc/articles/12903/-in-country-and-joint-auda-nepad–sadc-training-workshop-for-seychelles



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