Vice-Chancellor of the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST), Professor Rita Akosua Dickson, is advocating uptake of research outputs for commercialisation by local industries.
She believes partnerships with industry and investors would translate scientific and technological findings into impactful societal solutions.
“The problems of society are the university’s problems and we go through research to profess solutions to the problems of humanity.
“If the academia conduct the research, we must ensure the outcomes are impactful to the people for whom the research are carried out,” she said.
Prof. Mrs. Akosua Dickson, observed that the majority of research activities conducted by the University would not achieve the purpose of impacting society, if they only end up on book shelves and in journals.
In the light of attaining the UN Sustainable Development Goals, Professor Mrs Dickson is imploring local industries to partner with the University for the commercialization of research outputs.
“We are always mindful that we are taking the gown to town. KNUST believes in constructive partnership with industries. We therefore welcome the industries to commercialise the research outcomes so that they will be beneficial to the society,” she said.
The KNUST held a Science and Technology Exhibition as part of activities to commemorate the University’s 70th anniversary.
The exhibition saw a display of various innovative and sustainable artifacts and inventions developed by the different colleges in the university.
Impressed by the innovative exhibitions, Executive Director of AgriImpact Consult, Daniel Acquaye, observed most private industries shied away from collaborating with the universities.
This, according to him, stems from the protracted channels of communication investors have to endure.
He, therefore, advocates for the establishment of a platform for investor-friendly engagements between the university and industries.
“In most instances, the private sector is frustrated with the universities for reasons such as they not being straight forward and taking long durations to solve issues. It is always not clear to the investor the channels to take when engaging with the research institutions.
“So, we need to foster the academia-industry partnership and to achieve such, there must be a facilitator. The facilitator would ensure that there will be a platform for engagement.
“This would help the private sector see what the universities or research institutions have,” he said.
He further admonished the university to leverage the numerous benefits of the social media platforms to tout its products.
“The university must also be proactive. Whenever there is a street show in Ghana, the universities need to package their products and present themselves and their products at the trade shows.
“They have young people and can utilise social media to advertise and promote their innovative ideas and technologies. This would help generate interest by the private sector which would now begin to link up,” he said.
A number of senior high school across the country are anticipated to participate in the week-long exhibitions.
The students especially would be afforded the opportunity to explore the varied innovations and inventions to inspire them pursue STEM programs for national development.
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