NOTAP DG Affirms IPTTOs as Catalysts for Accelerating STI Progress in Nigeria

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From left: Deputy Director Technology Acquisition and Research Coordination, Mr. Daniel Archbong, the Director TARC, Mrs. Caroline Anie-Osuagwu, the Vice Chancellor of the Federal University Nguru, Gashua, Prof. Maimuna Waziri, the Deputy Director TARC, Engr. Enoch Moghalu and Mr. Kenny Shalom, a technology Officer from the TARC department during the event.

Dr. Dan-Azumi Mohammed Ibrahim, in his capacity as the Director General of the National Office for Technology Acquisition and Promotion (NOTAP), has highlighted the indispensable role that Intellectual Property and Technology Transfer Offices (IPTTOs) play in propelling the advancement of Science, Technology, and Innovation (STI) within Nigeria’s educational institutions. This emphasis came during the inauguration of an IPTTO at Federal University Nguru in Yobe State, where Dr. Ibrahim underscored how the integration of IPTTOs could significantly expedite the nation’s STI progress.

Dr. Ibrahim’s presence was represented by Mrs. Caroline Anie-Osuagwu, the Director of the Technology Acquisition and Research Coordination (TARC) department. In acknowledging the existing lack of a robust culture of innovation and intellectual property within Nigeria, Dr. Ibrahim stressed the pivotal role that the establishment of IPTTOs within academic institutions can play. He highlighted their capacity to generate awareness about the imperative of safeguarding intellectual property rights (IPR) and effectively commercializing domestically conceived technologies.

Focusing on Nigeria’s substantial knowledge infrastructure across the West African sub-region, Dr. Ibrahim spotlighted the ongoing research and development (R&D) activities taking place within these establishments. Yet, he lamented that these efforts often diverged from industrial needs, resulting in a lack of cohesion. He further elaborated on how numerous innovative projects remained stagnant beyond their prototype stages due to inadequate recognition of the research conducted within these educational institutions. Dr. Ibrahim also called attention to the nation’s overreliance on imported raw materials, which impeded progress.

Dr. Ibrahim urged universities to harness the potential of IPTTOs as a conduit to shift their emphasis from primarily academic research to research that responds to market demands. He believed that such a transition would enable the practical application of research outcomes.

During her welcome address, Prof. Maimuna Waziri, the Vice Chancellor of Federal University Nguru, expressed gratitude to Dr. Ibrahim and NOTAP’s leadership for selecting their institution as the host for an IPTTO. Prof. Waziri highlighted the pivotal, albeit often inconspicuous, contributions of NOTAP, particularly due to the intangible nature of its operations.

The Vice Chancellor underlined the paramount significance of IPTTOs within educational institutions, acknowledging the financial support and collaborative challenges faced by both universities and industries. She expressed her confidence that NOTAP’s engagement would cultivate a synergistic partnership between academia and industry, thus accelerating the commercialization of R&D outcomes to comprehensively advance the nation.

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