WCID 2022: As NITDA Expands Collaboration for Innovative Entrepreneurship, by Inyene Ibanga
Creativity and innovation constitute the core of the sustainable technological transformation of any society. These twin elements are major determinants of the prosperity of nations and the well-being of citizens.
Globally, it is acknowledged that creativity and innovation play critical roles in all human activities, whether for work or recreation. Technological innovation is transforming the economies of nations from traditional to digital.
Creativity and innovation have the capacity for problem-solving that impacts diverse sectors of the global economy. Apart from improving our world, they enable the economy to generate income and create new jobs thereby stimulating economic growth.
In recognition of the important change that creativity and innovation can bring to local communities, nations, and people, the United Nations designated 21 April every year as World Creativity and Innovation Day (WCID), which was first commemorated on 21 April 2018.
On this Day, the UN invites member states, regional and international organisations, civil society groups, and individuals to observe the day following national priorities to raise awareness of the importance of creativity and innovation in problem-solving toward the achievement of economic, social, and sustainable development.
In continuation of Nigeria’s determined transition into a stable digital economy, the federal government through the Ministry of Communications and Digital Economy, the National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA), and its subsidiaries, is joining the rest of the global community to commemorate the 2022 WCID in line with country’s commitment to key into this transformative initiative.
Through the policy guidance and support of the Minister, Prof. Isa Pantami, NITDA, and its subsidiary organisations, NITDA has continued to deliver an optimum implementation of the National Digital Economy Policy and Strategy (NDEPS) to grow Nigeria’s digital economy.
Accordingly, the Agency has keyed into this transformative initiative by making strategic realignments to consolidate the gains and globally position Nigeria as a leading digital innovation and entrepreneurship hub.
Having identified innovation as a critical tool for implementing the National Digital Economy Policy and Strategy (NDEPS), NITDA created an office dedicated to promoting Nigerian technology innovations through the creation of Innovation-Driven Enterprises (IDEs), and the protection of such enterprises.
The Office for Nigerian Digital Innovation (ONDI) is one of the critical Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV) created by NITDA to promote, grow and protect the Nigerian technology ecosystem through the proliferation of Innovation-Driven Enterprises (IDEs) to produce more job providers and sustainable prosperity for Nigeria.
It coordinates and supports activities on policy implementation, enforcement, and interventions to ensure the protection of IDEs, and compliances with local content guidelines to enhance their success.
Also, NITDA established the National Centre for Artificial Intelligence and Robotics (NCAIR), as the digital laboratory for advancing creativity, innovation, and skills development to exploit the power of Discovery, Incubation, and Acceleration.
The Centre promotes research and development on Artificial Intelligence (AI), Robotics and Drones, the Internet of Things (IoT), and other emerging technologies, aimed at transforming the Nigerian digital economy.
The global theme for the 2022 UN World Creativity and Innovation Day celebration is “Collaboration”. To highlight the importance of collaboration for growing Nigeria’s economy, NITDA has invited indigenous innovators and key players in the public and private sectors to an event commemorating this year’s World Creativity and Innovation Day.
Startups pitching session with various prizes to be awarded to eventual winners, an Exposition (Expo) for indigenous startups to showcase their innovative solutions, and a fireside chat on Creativity and Innovation: Powering Collaboration for a Sustainable Digital Economy, are among the activities lined up to add color to the day.
Meanwhile, in the face of existing challenges confronting different areas of our lives as individuals and as a nation, creative and innovative technology remain a critical route to solving our pressing economic, political, and socio-cultural problems.
The United Nations World Creativity Day 2022 celebration is a further call for intensification of creative and innovative action on the part of the tech-related related government agencies to cultivate new beneficial partnerships, while also sustaining ongoing engagements for a successful implementation of the digital economy.
To resolve the problems bludgeoning the country, the focused and unrelenting implementation of Nigeria’s digital transformation agenda by NITDA and its subsidiaries for the multiplication of Innovation-Driven Enterprises in all sectors of the economy is imperative.
Inyene Ibanga, writes from Corporate Communications Unit, Office for Nigerian Digital Innovation (ONDI), Wuye District, Abuja