Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Nigeria Innovation Cluster Mapping Project

A project being managed by the African Institution of Technology (AFRIT) is planning to embark on a project that would seek to discover where innovations are happening in the suburban areas of the country and provide data that would help policy makers and private organizations in improving innovations around the country.

The Nigeria Cluster Mapping Project (NCMP) wants to collect data about how clusters are forming in various areas of the country. It is also curious to know what innovations are driving those clusters.
Cluster
Image: Wikipedia
There are different ways technology can be practiced no matter how crude they may be at the moment. Different parts of Nigeria are known for major areas of specialization. These industries have driven clusters in most of these regions.
For instance, Aba is a place known for quality shoes. I’ve heard many people say that some ‘Made in Italy’ shoes you find in Nigeria are actually made from Aba. The surprise is that the shoes are so durable that most people never suspect it was made in Nigeria.
There are several other areas in Nigeria with innovative crafts that are less known but nevertheless, have driven clusters in those regions. This project wants to gather data about those places and release the data to both government and private organizations that will use it to improve and drive more innovations in those areas.
NCMP will gather data about innovations from sectors such as metal processing, agriculture, shoe making, dyeing, startups and others. Building a database of innovation ecosystems and entities that will include startups, research labs, ideas, outstanding individual projects and more will be done to aid the project.
This project is being managed by African Institute of Technology with Milonics Analytics providing the statistical modeling and data analytic tools. The project is being sponsored by The Tony Elumelu Foundation. Dr. Ndubuisi Ekekwe is the program director and will lead many Nigerian professors and field associates in the project.

If you have any question about this project, you can address it to Audrey Kumar using the email address: research@afrit.org. The project also involve surveys so, if you would like to reveal some details about your small/big institution and what you do, you can participate in the survey.

It is expected that the project would be brought to a conclusion before the World Economic Forum coming up in Nigeria in May. Details about the project is also expected to be shared during the forum.
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