July 28, 2014

Entrepreneurship for Scientist and Engineers in West Africa 2014

The African Institute for Mathematical Sciences, Ghana and the Institute of Physics (IOP), U.K, jointly organised the 2014 Entrepreneurship workshop at AIMS-Ghana campus, from 14th -18th July 2014. 39 participants from Ghana, Nigeria, Cameroon, Burkina Faso and Kenya participated in the workshop designed to build entrepreneurial skills of Scientist and Engineers and accelerate commercialisation of their scientific inventions.

The workshop was officially opened on 14th July 2014 at AIMS-Ghana Campus, Biriwa, near Saltpond. Organisers, participants and invited guests for the occasion graced the ceremony in pomp and pageantry.

Speaking at the opening of the workshop, Prof. Francis K. A. Allotey, President of AIMS-Ghana, expressed gratitude to the principal co- sponsors; the Institute Of Physics (IOP), International Center for Theoretical Physics (ICTP) and the Institute for Electrical and Electronic Engineering (IEEE) for their enormous support in bringing participants from Ghana and other international Countries to Biriwa to benefit from the all-important workshop. He also praised the IOP for partnering Government of Ghana to establish the IOP-Ada Physics Centre to strengthen the teaching of physics and electronics for students at Pre-University level, Junior High School, Senior Higher School and Teacher Training College.

The guest speaker, Hon. Edwin Nii Lante Vanderpuye, former Deputy Minister for Trade and Industry enumerated the important role Scientist and Engineers play in the world, “in today’s world, scientists and engineers play a vital role by contributing to the building of values as well as the opportunity to interconnect their technical know-how with the free market”. Hon Nii Lante Vanderpuye reiterated government’s commitment to strengthen linkages among key agents in the science, technology and innovation systems (STI). He said “government has initiated action to reinforce the capability and capacity of the public research base institutions to effectively engage with industry”.

Present at the opening ceremony were representatives from the Ghana UNESCO Commission and Ghana Academy of Arts and Sciences.

The five days intensive workshop was facilitated by seasoned local and international entrepreneurs and coaches such as; Dr. Richard Brooks,( Director, FD Solutions, U.K), Professor Dawood Parker, (Managing Director, Melys AFS Ltd and Melys Diagnostics Ltd, U.K), Yumiko Hamano, LLM, MBA, (IP and Business Consultant, ET Cube International) USA, Nana Tweneboa-Boateng, (CEO, EMPRETEC, Ghana Foundation), Herman Chinery- Hesse (Chairman, The Softtribe), Kweku Rockson ( Senior Lecturer, Ghana Institute of Journalism) and Dr George Essegbey (Director, Science and Technology Policy Research Institute, CSIR)

Participants were tasked to prepare business plans for innovative ventures that could be marketed to consumers. The team with the most innovative idea stands the chance of winning USD2000 from the OSA as seed funding for the business.

Sponsors of the workshop include AIMS-Ghana, the IOP were the American Physical Society, the International Centre for Theoretical Physics (ICTP), the Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers (IEEE), and the Optical Society (OSA).

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