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Research goes national

The Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Education, Mr Alfred Ilukena, earlier this week joined the research and science commission to launch Namibia’s first National Programme on Research, Science, Technology and Innovation.

The CEO of the National Commission on Research, Science and Technology, Dr Eino Emvula officially launched the National Programme on Research, Science, Technology and Innovation on Tuesday this week.

The three-year programme is designed to operationalise and instrumentalise the role of driving Namibia’s transformation for economic development. This programme presents the first coherent attempt to address the general lack of research.
The targets for 2017 set in this programme specifically outlined the desired future for Namibia if Vision 2030 is to be attained. The principle underpinning this programme while recognizing that R&D is the key to scientific and technological progress, Namibia’s approach to RSTI is to use it as a tool to help solve socio-economic challenges.
The commission is coordinating the implementation of this programme.
“The programme, very much like the commission itself, should be seen as facilitators of knowledge creation and dissemination with the purpose of transforming the political-economy and knowledge landscape of the country towards becoming globally more competitive and socially more sustainable. It is also worth stating that the programme and the Strategic Plan (2014/15 – 2016/17) of the NCRST are meant to co-exist peacefully”, said Prof Andre du Pisani, Chairperson of the commission during the official launch.
The programme was developed within the broader context of V2030’s goal for Namibia to become “a prosperous and industrialised Namibia, developed by her human resources, enjoying peace, harmony and political stability”. Furthermore, according to V2030, Namibia aspires to become a healthy and food-secure nation, with a resource-based industrial sector and commercial agriculture, and is placing great emphasis on skills development.
The National Programme on Research, Science, Technology and Innovation was approved by Cabinet on 24 February this year. This programme was subsequently tabled before Parliament on 10 March to comply with the Research, Science and Technology Act. The National Programme identifies the priority areas for investment in research, science, technology and innovation and presents an implementation programme for the remainder of the fourth National Development Plan. The programme defines research priorities to solve the primary social and economic challenges.

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