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Saturday, July 15, 2017

INTRODUCTION TO RESEARCH DEVELOPMENT IN NIGERIA: A SOLUTION FOR SUSTAINABLE NATIONAL DEVELOPMENT


Theme: Alleviating Poverty & Unemployment in the Nigeria Economy.

Tag line: "Making Life Better For All Nigerians"


Category: Research Development
TopicIntroducing Research Development in Nigeria - A Solution For Sustainable National Development.
Focus/Coverage: Nigeria As A Nation

By:

Ambassador Akorede Kalejaiye


About Me:


I am a visionary, an active citizen, and a budding researcher with keen interests in the field of material science. I have a good experience in project management and policy making, I have been rendering pro bono services for a year now and I am currently volunteering as a youth ambassador for Nicareer initiatives. My passion for research development motivated me to create this write-up titled “Research development in Nigeria: A solution for sustainable national development,” knowing fully well the importance of research development in any developing nation.

NIGERIA: THE GROWING GIANT


Recent rankings indicate that Nigeria ranks 152 out of 188 in Human Development Index (HDI), [1] a statistic used to measure how well a nation provides a suitable environment for its people in terms of opportunities and personal development. Nigeria is a country blessed with resources (mineral & human resources), but it is sad to note that a nation with one of the largest youth population in the world (54.6% of the country fall between 15 and 65 [3]) is crippled by unemployment. As an active citizen I am working towards youth development driven majorly by scientific research.

POOR RESEARCH DEVELOPMENT IN THE COUNTRY


The biggest challenge facing a typical community in sub-Saharan Africa is the problem of poor research development which in turn causes problems of brain drain and poor economic development, so to make up for an underdeveloped research sector in the nation a high value is placed on the equipment that would be imported into country, and a higher value is placed on skilled personnel that would operate them. 

A SOLUTION


A good way to develop research in the country is to start from the grass root level, by introducing offices of research in schools and higher institutions. They would take care of organizing research activities at the undergraduate or secondary school level – the same way it is done in US, Europe and parts of Asia; a centralized centre co-ordinates and supervise the activities of all offices in the nation. The activities should be primarily funded by the government, but private companies and research institutes can contribute by organizing summer workshops & research internships for the students – a similar initiative is the “make we make” program of MIT ImpactLabs, Nigeria. The centre would organize annual symposia and science fairs (modeled after international fairs like Google science fair & Intel ISEF) that would help students share ideas, and find potential mentors and investors that would help them develop the ideas into marketable products. Products made in the country would be gotten at a cheaper rate, and the revenue generated from exporting these products would go a long way in improving the nation’s economy.

IMPORTANCE OF RESEARCH DEVELOPMENT


Research development (especially scientific research) not only serve as a way to close up the gap between industrialized nations and developing nations, but also provide policy makers with knowledge that would help them address issues of national development. A good example of what research development can do is evident in the impact of Research4Life programs in developing nations, notably how access to research contents “allowed a practitioner in Ethiopia to successfully treat a patient with adamantanoma of  the tibia, a rare form of cancer, and helped his hospital to deliver more effective training to orthopaedic physicians.” [4]

CONCLUSION


Research serves as the basis for knowledge creation, which drives innovation in the country. Innovation produces projects which are of great benefits to the extended community, thereby putting the country in a key position in the global market which is beneficial to its economic development. It would help Nigeria tap into areas like mining – mineral resources – which remains undeveloped, [3] causing massive industrialization throughout the country. 

REFERENCES:


  1. Nigeria ranked 152 of 188 countries in Human Development Index, Premium Times, 19th of April 2017
  2. The role of research in national development (Speech: New Zealand government), Scoop parliament, 9th of June 2014
  3. Nigeria, Wikipedia
  4. Richard George, Measuring the impact of research access in the developing world, Elsevier, 7th of January 2013 



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