‘Think Tank’ for Translating Research to Innovations, Strategies, Evidence for Policy and National Development

University of Ibadan Research Foundation

Introduction and Rationale for 'Think Tank'

Translating research to innovations, strategies and evidence for policy is critical for sustainable socioeconomic development of all nations. Capacity to translate research to innovations for promoting sustainable contributions of Agriculture, Commerce, Energy, Health, Infrastructure and Security sectors is critical for national development. The economies of the BRICS countries- Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa are growing and benefiting from the dividends of translating research to innovations that generate new products and novel strategies to guide policies for national development. The facilities and capacity for the translations of research to innovations provide a platform for adoption of ‘knowledge economy’ for sustainable development.  Collaborations between universities and research institutions play critical roles in translating research outputs to innovations in these BRICS countries. A similar role if effectively adopted by the universities, research institutions, the private sector and industry could provide a formidable platform for an effort to diversify and adopt ‘knowledge economy’ in Nigeria.

Today, Nigeria has over one hundred universities, research institutions and a resilient private sector with significant number of experts who can contribute to efforts on strengthening the economy with dividends of knowledge from research. The University of Ibadan alone has over 1,500 academic staffs a large number actively engaged in research and generating new information published in over 700 research papers every year. Nigeria was credited with 3952 publications in peer reviewed journals and came second only to South Africa in a 2011 review of the publishing landscape in Africa (Nature 474, June 2011). The research endeavors of these research leaders at the universities and the private sector in Nigeria represent a treasure that can bring innovations to underwrite the economic development of the nation. The University of Ibadan Research Foundation (UI-Research Foundation) has developed a framework for creating a national “Think Tank” designed to facilitate collaborations between leaders and these institutions in efforts to stimulate translations of research findings to innovations, new strategies and evidence for policies to sustain the contributions of Agriculture, Commerce, Energy, Health, Infrastructure and Security sectors to economic development of Nigeria.

The Think Tank aims to serve as a platform capable of facilitating the development and adoption of ‘knowledge economy’ for Nigeria. It is designed to become a significant regional hub to foster global partnerships for promoting high scholastic standards and translations of research outcomes to evidence for pragmatic policies in Agriculture, Commerce, Energy, Health, Infrastructure and Security. The UI-Research Foundation hopes that the platform will provide a spring board for public and private sector collaborations and practices for sustainable ‘knowledge economy’  in Nigeria.