Ghana and 14 other African countries have been given $10million by four development partners to boost investment in and application of science, technology and innovation.
The money is expected to be used to build the capacity and activities of science granting councils in the beneficiary countries.
The funding partners are the Department for International Development (DFID) of the United Kingdom, the International Development Research Centre of Canada, the Department of Science and Technology and the National Research Foundation, both of South Africa.
The support is being provided under a programme known as Science Granting Councils Initiative in Sub-Saharan Africa.
The initiative is a network of science granting councils of 15 sub-Saharan African countries, including Ghana.
Member countries of the initiative include Ghana, Ethiopia, Kenya, Rwanda, Tanzania and Uganda.
The rest are Botswana, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, Zambia, Zimbabwe, Burkina Faso and Côte d’Ivoire.
The general meeting of the initiative was held in Accra yesterday on the theme: “Research and innovation for job creation”.
It was organised by the African Centre for Technology Studies, in collaboration with the Ministry of Environment, Science, Technology and Innovation.
According to a representative of the funding partners, Dr Ellie Osir, “national councils are agents of the government and are expected to represent the interests of a country’s scientific community and that is why we support them to deliver on their national mandates to boost the application of STI in their various countries to accelerate and boost socio-economic development”.
He said the councils also played critical roles in helping to consolidate national systems of innovation and were, therefore, central to funding and catalysing research and innovation.
Dr Osir underscored the need for the holding of annual general meetings and similar engagements by participating countries, since they were critical to the successful delivery of the initiative.
The Minister of Business Development, Dr Ibrahim Mohammed Awal, expressed gratitude to the organisers for giving Ghana the privilege to host the regional meeting, which he said had boosted the country’s image globally.
He said Ghana had resolved to put science, technology and innovation at the centre of its socio-economic development agenda.
Dr Awal said Ghana had done better over the years in building its human resource capacity, especially in science infrastructure development, among other initiatives.