Feeding Africa: Why Biotechnology Sceptics are Wrong to Dismiss GM

“Genetically-modified (GM) crops or any other breeding methods on their own cannot solve the challenges related to food quality, access to food, nutrition or stability of food systems. But their role cannot be dismissed for ideological reasons.”


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Technological Leapfrogging in Agriculture

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“To harness the globally available technologies, African leaders will need to take into account the multisectoral dimension of African agriculture and pay particular attention to the urgency of investing in rural infrastructure, higher agricultural training and creation of regional markets.”


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Technology transfer and innovation: exploring the multifaceted nature of this interaction

Technology transfer and innovation: exploring the multifaceted nature of this interaction
Barbara Bigliardi; Francesco Galati; Giuliano Marolla; Chiara Verbano
International Journal of Technology Transfer and Commercialisation, Vol. 12, No. 1/2/3 (2013) pp. 1 – 7
A key component in the success of industrial firms is the extent of their innovativeness. In recent decades, as a result of intense international competition, fragmented and demanding markets and rapidly changing technologies, companies are more and more recognising the importance of the ‘technology transfer’ process to benefit from the innovations introduced into the market. Moving from this increasing importance attributed to the technology transfer, the purpose of this special issue is to shed light on the main issue related to this matter. We begin this introductory paper by providing a brief overview of some theoretical reasons underlying the undeniable relevance of technology transfer for both companies and the society as a whole. We then introduce the six papers that are included in the special issue, thus revealing their respective contributions and their advancement of existing knowledge.

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International technology transfer: innovative quantitative tools

International technology transfer: innovative quantitative tools
Houssam Eddine Bessam; Rainer Gadow
International Journal of Technology Transfer and Commercialisation, Vol. 12, No. 1/2/3 (2013) pp. 78 – 101
International technology transfer (ITT) including transfer of knowledge and technology between companies in industrialised countries and their partners in developing countries is not necessary always successful. This work based on the experiences of professionals from North African countries (Egypt and Algeria) is an effort to build mathematical models encompassing all project stages using the existing success/failure factors of technology transfer from the literature review as input variables in order to predict the performance of ITT projects as an output and to determine a set of best practices. The gathered data about realised projects were exploited for developing linear, nonlinear models using conventional statistical approaches and also fuzzy models. These models should be seen as complementary rather than as rivals. They allow not only the prediction of an ITT project performance but also may help for a better understanding of ITT process. The performance of an ITT project in this study is a set of five success dimensions for e.g. success at the macro level and success in short term at the level of the company. These dimensions are conflicting because the increase of one success could lead to decrease in another. Therefore the use of multi-objective optimisation theory was necessary in order to determine the optimum of Pareto offering a good combination of them. ACADO toolkit and MOEA framework were used in this study for calculating the optimum of Pareto.

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How do Indonesian industries perceive university-industry collaboration? Motivations, benefits and problems

How do Indonesian industries perceive university-industry collaboration? Motivations, benefits and problems
NuruI Indarti; Fathul Wahid
International Journal of Technology Transfer and Commercialisation, Vol. 12, No. 1/2/3 (2013) pp. 157 – 171
This study examines university-industry collaboration from the industry perspective. From a survey of 32 firms engaged in university-industry joint research funded by the Indonesian Government, we found various motivations to set up joint research with universities. These included accessing new ideas, getting involved in relevant research and accessing available research funding. A variety of benefits were enjoyed by industry, such as accessing new ideas and know-how from the university, improving product and process development, advancing the ability to provide better information to consumers/suppliers and improving R&D activities. However, industry partners perceived that their allocated investments did not pay off as expected and they were in doubt about the applicability or commercialisation potential of the research output. The findings also indicated that researchers were less likely to base research on the real problems faced by industry, but rather from an a priori perception or ideas they had in mind. Finally, recommendations were also provided.

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Innovation Capabilities for Sustainable Development in Africa

A sustainable pathway for Africa in the twenty-first century is laid out in the setting of the development of innovation capabilities and the capture of latecomer advantages. Africa has missed out on these possibilities in the twentieth century while seeing the East Asian countries advance. There are now abundant examples and cases to draw on, in the new setting where industrial development has to have green tinges to be effective.


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Please share your ideas on how Open Data can help eradicate rural poverty

We’d like to hear your ideas of how Open Data could be used to help eradicate poverty and improve public services in rural India.We are launching a co-creation and crowdsourcing effort on “Open Data Solutions for Rural Development and Inclusive Growth in Andhra Pradesh and Telangana.” This is linked to an ideation workshop on September 4 in Hyderabad, which will bring together key stakeholders from these two Indian States, including government officials, development practitioners, health, education, agriculture, retail and other subject matter experts, entrepreneurs, ICT firms, and academic and research institutions.

You can follow the discussions online via Twitter, ask questions and engage with us on (http://www.twitter.com/worldbankict), using the hashtag #data4impact. You can also follow us on our Facebook page.

The workshop will consist of two parts. The first part will focus on knowledge sharing of global and Indian good practices, successful solutions and lessons learned, as well as collecting feedback from participants and discussing priorities for the Open Data initiative in the rural space. There will be presentations by government officials and World Bank experts with examples from around the world, in India and within the two states.

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