The 6th Edition of the Nairobi Innovation Week 2022 has officially kicked off. The three-day event is themed, ‘Innovation for transformation and Impact in the society’ is happening at the Main Campus from Tuesday April 26-28, 2022.
The Nairobi Innovation week has Innovation exhibition, plenary sessions and side events; master classes, Safaricom Hackathon are among the different sessions in the programme.
The opening ceremony kicked off with a highlight of the plans for the three days by the Associate Vice Chancellor, Research, Innovation and Enterprise, Prof. Margaret Hutchinson. In her remarks, she thanked the 22 partners and sponsors of the Innovation week, she highlighted the participation of over 40 exhibitors, 20 hackthons, 5 masterclasses and the 45 speakers that will have made the event possible.
welcoming remarks from the Vice Chancellor, University of Nairobi, Prof. Stephen Kiama who is hosting the event at the UoN grounds. ‘This University is a research intensive university with a reputation for excellence and a strong and vibrant research culture and perhaps is a main reason for hosting the Nairobi Innovation Week,’ he said.
He said, ‘for innovation to be relevant it has to transform both the innovator and the society.’ As he continued his address; especially to the students, he said it would be remise of them to graduate from the university with only knowledge from academia. Instead they should ensure that they use the university’s resources to ensure that they come out as holistic individuals with extra innovative skills.
The CEO, Safaricom, Peter Ndegwa, while delivering the keynote speech explained extensively to the audience how Safaricom leverages on technology and innovation to create solutions. He noted, ‘Customer obsession, purpose, collaboration and Innovation are the 4 elements that drive Safaricom to greater heights and has formed what we call the spirit of Safaricom,’
Mr. Ndegwa challenged the youth to uphold their values and beliefs and remain sober even when they make a lot of money.
The Principal Secretary, State Department Devolution, Charles Sunkuli says that innovations revolve around providing change with emphasis on climate and social change issues. In addition, he informed the audience saying, ‘social development and giving the youth a platform that nurtures their growth is how they ensure that they support the youth in the society.’
After the 6th Edition of the Nairobi Innovation Week was declared opened by the keynote speaker, CEO Peter Ndegwa, there was a panel discussion moderated by Pro. Bitange Ndemo. The panel discussed the role the industry, academia and government play to catalyse innovation and entrepreneurship culture in Kenya. They took stock of the innovation ecosystem and they urged Kenyans to dig deeper and strengthen institutional frameworks for innovation.
Some of the input given was from Dr Tony Omwansa, CEO, Kenya National Innovation Agency on the need for students and by extension the citizens to fall in love with problems rather than ideas and the need for curiosity and agility from the students which was brought out by the UNSA president, Melvin Thogo.
The delegation toured the Innovation exhibitions and interacted with youth, students and staff that had showcased their innovations.
All the speakers thanked the key stakeholders and partners; Safaricom, Mabati Rolling Millers, Elgon Kenya, KCB, Ministry of Education Science and Technology, Ministry of Education, Science and Technology, Ministry of Industrialization, Trade and Enterprise Development, State Department of Youth Affairs, NCBA Bank, British Council among others.
For more information on the activities going on at the Nairobi Innovation Week 2022 please visit www.niw.uonbi.ac.ke
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