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Ghana celebrates Innovation Week 2013

BY: Arku Jasmine

The Ghana-India Kofi Annan Centre of Excellence in ICT (AITI-KACE) will host Ghana's annual Innovation Week from Tuesday 25 to Saturday 29 June, 2013.  

The Innovation Week is West Africa's premier Innovation event, showcasing the work of Ghana's talented and agile technology application developers.

The theme for this year’s Innovation Week (i-Week 2013) is 'Driving Innovation: New Communities, New Opportunities, New Markets', and (Driving Innovation.COM).

The opening ceremony on June 25 at 3:00pm will be chaired by the Minister of Communications Dr. Edward Omane Boamah, with a keynote address from Mr. P. V. Obeng, Chairman of the National Development Planning Commission (NDPC).

The i-Week, an event organised by the AITI-KACE and partners, aims at promoting ICT innovation in Ghana and the ECOWAS sub-region through a combination of seminars, interactive presentations/case studies, hands-on training, as well as the exhibition of innovative technology solutions.

The event is expected to attract over 2000 participants nationwide and many more globally via web-streaming, Twitter and other social media platforms. Innovation Week 2013 will feature the popular AITI-KACE Innovation Challenge (i-Challenge) which recognizes the talent of Ghana's mobile and web application developers.

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Some key highlights of the event include an ideation session by international speaker, author, consultant, Andrew Missingham.  

Mr Missingham who has consulted for many Fortune 500 companies will also give a keynote address titled “The Feature Phone Fortune at the Base of the Pyramid”.

There will be an exhibition of innovative technology solutions by 25 of Ghana's most promising startups, an official launch of the AITI Hacker Space, code-named AITI HubSpace,  which is an important element of the AITI Innovation Hub.  

The shortlist of competitors for the Innovation Challenge (iChallenge) will be announced. A full schedule of activities can be downloaded at http://iweek.aiti-kace.com.gh/2013/programme/.

Attendees will participate in training sessions on open source technologies, business ideation, product innovation, plenary discussions and get the opportunity to visit the IT clinic – a Team of experts will diagnose and prescribe solutions for various IT challenges facing businesses.  There will be Speed Mentoring and Pitching sessions, Networking opportunities, and the opportunity to join the Innovation Hub. Exciting quizzes and raffles provide the opportunity to win branded souvenirs and phones from sponsors.

Speaking at the launch the Director-General of AITI-KACE, Dorothy Gordon spoke of the impact of i-Week on Ghana's development and stated“...i-Week really allows businesses, institutions, and people to talk to each other and grow the community of those thinking around innovation  and doing it.”

Sponsors for this year's i-Week include MainOne, Google, National Communications Authority (NCA), Catholic Relief Service (CRS), GCNet, Airtel, DreamOval, Vodafone, IBM, Ostec, TicketGhana, Blogging Ghana, Ericsson, NandiMobile, PopOut, Incharge Global, Voltic, TV Africa and CitiFM.

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