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The Science and Technology Policy Research Institute of the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR-STEPRI) successfully  hosted the 16th edition of the Globelics International Conference, dubbed ‘Accra 2018.’ The three day event was held from the 24th-26th October 2018, at the Mensvic Grand Hotel here in Accra Ghana. The conference was organized under the theme: Innovation, Economic Growth and Sustainable Development: Strengthening Institutions for Greater Relevance, Effectiveness and Inclusivity.

The Conference was organized with the collaboration of the Ministry of Environment, Science, Technology and Innovation, GLOBELICS and Africalics  Secretariats

GLOBELICS stands for Global Network for the Economics of Learning, Innovation, and Competence Building Systems. The Conference was organized with the aim to provide a platform for intellectual engagement and discussions on issues relating to innovations and institutional transformations within countries, across different economic sectors, and different operational levels (macro, meso and micro), without losing sight of contextual gender disparities. The conference yielded insightful recommendations for overcoming the challenges related to innovation, capacity building and inclusive development in knowledge and political systems, and provide novel approaches to promote economic growth and sustainable development.

GLOBELICS as an open diverse community of scholars working on innovation and competence building for economic development has since 2003, brought together more than 3,000 world leading scholars and young scholars from all over the world engaged in research on how innovation and competence building contribute to economic and social sustainable and inclusive development.

Day 1 saw the opening Ceremony with Dr. George Owusu Essegbey, Chairman of the Local Organizing Committee welcoming all the participants to Ghana. 

Then came the turn of the Chairman of the Ceremony, the Minister of State in Charge of Tertiary Education, Professor Kwesi Yankah. 

Professor Victor Kwame Agyeman, Director General of the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR-Ghana) in his remarks, urged the scientists to come out with innovations that would justify the course of governments to putting more funding toward research.

The Director of the Host Institution, Dr. Wilhemina Quaye also gave a brief address in which she welcomed all participants and to the all-important 16th Globelics Conference International Conference and to Ghana.

Professor Kwabena Frimpong-Boateng, the Minister of Environment, Science, Technology and Innovation, and a keynote Speaker, called for a stronger collaboration between stakeholders in Africa to promote sustainable and inclusive development.  He said African scientists needed to come up with innovations that could make the people own and control technology, skills and resources to enable the Continent to own her resources and benefit from them.

Prof. Frimpong-Boateng was speaking at the opening of the 16th Global Network for the Economics of Learning, Innovation, and Competence Building Systems (GLOBELICS) in Accra on Wednesday, a three-day conference being attended by more than 300 delegates. He said for Africa to thrive, it needed to build institutions that would allow the people to meet their basic needs as well as emerging and future challenges such as those related to climate change and reiterated the point that there was also the need to embrace technology in all its forms because technology had a track record of solving problems. “We believe that our development depends on our ability to understand, interpret, select, adopt, use, transmit, produce and commercialize scientific and technological knowledge,” he said.

Prof. Frimpong-Boateng said the Ministry had revised the National Science and Technology Policy, created a Presidential Advisory Committee for Science Technology and Innovation (STI) and an STI Fund, as well as formulated National Plastics Management and Biodiversity Policies.

The Minister said these interventions and many others had contributed to the advancement of innovation and development in Ghana, but more action in terms of research and practice was still required.

The afternoon of Day 1 saw the Keynote Lecture by Professor Xiaobo Wu of the National Institute of Innovation Management, Zhejiang University, China after which came Parallel Sessions 1, 2 and 3 where several papers were presented and discussed. Day One climaxed with the Welcome Reception at the Pool Side of the hotel amidst live band music

Day 2 saw Parallel Sessions A, B, C and D, the Freeman Lecture, delivered by Professor Marana Mazzucato , Poster Presentations and Cultural Tours. Day 2 closed with the Conference Dinner where participants were treated to Ghanaian food and cultural displays with the Dinner Speech being delivered by Professor Bengt-Ake Lundvall (The Founding Father of GLOBELICS)

Day 3 was dedicated to Special Sessions E, F, G, Parallel Session 5 and the Local Industry Session and the presentation of certificates to deserving participants. The Closing saw farewell addresses by Professor K.J. Joseph ( President of the GLOBELICS Scientific Board), Dr. George O. Essegbey(Chairman, Globelics 2018 LOC) and Dr. Jeffery Orozco, who made a presentation on the next Host (GLOBELICS 2020) Costa Rica.

Globelics Ghana 2018 had the following to boast about:

  1. The conference saw an excellent organizational skills displayed by the local organizing committee led by Dr. George Essegbey.
  2. It also turned out to be an important milestone in the pursuit towards addressing issues related to harnessing innovation for development Africa and Ghana.
  3. The conference, saw the highest ever paper submissions (511) from about 68 countries also had the highest ever participation (51%) from the low and lower middle-income countries.
  4. The quality and standards of the papers presented, key notes, special sessions and deliberations in general was high as compared to earlier ones.
  5. Above all the warmth, friendliness and hospitality touched the hearts of all and a manifestation of the ethos and capabilities of STEPRI

The success of the conference has also enhanced CSIR-STEPRI’s image as an international think-tank in Science and STI Policy.