The Minister of State for Science, Technology and Innovation, Barr. Mohammed Abdullahi, has urged Nigerian researchers and innovators to focus more of their research efforts on national challenges such as power generation.
Speaking in a lecture – ‘How government-academia-industry linkages drive economic development in Nigeria’ at the Igbinedion University, Okada, Benin City, Edo State, Abdullahi said the ministry had made conscious efforts to establish strong interactions between the industry and researchers through programs like the annual STI EXPO.
He called for the education system to focus more on the adequate deployment of knowledge to the nation’s socio-economic benefit.
On development of indigenous technology, he said: “Industries are equally invited to create opportunities for R&D in knowledge institutes with the purpose of reducing importation of foreign technologies and support more technology transfers.”
The minister said the Government-Academia-Industry (GIA) model was the most reliable way to achieve rapid commercialisation of research findings, pointing out that it would drive national socio-economic development as seen in countries like China, adding economic diversification would be achieved due to an increased focus on scientific research and innovation.
He said more funding for research institutions (universities, polytechnics etc) would aid the achievement of socio-economic breakthrough, even as he hailed the efforts of the Igbinedion University, Okada in STI development such as the establishment of research centers.
Earlier, Igbinedion University vice chancellor, Prof. Lawrence Ezemonye, said the varsity had been at the forefront of championing higher education revolution in the country through innovation, entrepreneurship, bespoke research in tandem with its motto: Knowledge and Excellence.
Ezemonye said the institution had also introduced skills set and master classes embedded in all its academic programmes to further enhance the skills content of the curriculum, by making it a truly entrepreneurial university.
He appreciated the minister for finding time to deliver his lecture in the university.