Botswana Innovation Hub nurtures grassroots innovation
Botswana Innovation Hub continues to nurture grassroots innovations and advance the ‘Made in Africa’ theme of the recent Innovation Prize for Africa (IPA) 2016 that heralds a message of enterprise and prosperity for African innovators.
In his keynote address at the launch of the D’Kar Innovation Resource Centre and the official opening of the International Development Design Summit (IDDS) Botswana in D’Kar last month, CEO Alan Boshwaen said the partnership between Botswana Innovation Hub and These Hands was nurturing grassroots innovation.
These Hands is a social and sustainable development enterprise that is also a member of the Botswana Innovation Hub’s entrepreneurship development programme, First Steps Venture Centre (FSVC).
Boshwaen said, “A key feature in the partnership between Botswana Innovation Hub and These Hands is the development of a local Innovation Resource Centre in D’Kar. The Centre’s development was initially done through the support of the Southern Africa Innovation Support Programme (SAiS) facilitated by Botswana Innovation Hub in 2015.” He went on to say Botswana Innovation Hub sees opportunity for outreach through the Centre and the IDDS Botswana Summit.
The IDDS Botswana Summit is an initiative of the International Development Innovation Network (IDIN) and its partners led by the D-Labs at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in Boston, USA. The programme is part funded by the United States of America International Development Programme (USAID)’s Global Development Lab and is implemented by a global consortium of academic, institutional and innovation centre partners. IDIN empowers a diverse, global network of innovators to design, develop and disseminate technologies to improve the lives of people living in poverty.
The IDIN method of identifying local solutions for local challenges is unique and involves a multidisciplinary approach which Botswana Innovation Hub intends to use to model long term partnerships that facilitate the process of problem identification design thinking, rapid prototyping, leading to full commercialisation of products.