Mount Kenya University has held a sensitization forum for African Higher Education Leadership in Advancing Inclusive Innovation for Development (AHEAD) program at the Senate Boardroom.
AHEAD is a three-year capacity building project, starting on 2018 and ending on 2021. The consortium consists of 4 universities from Europe (Romania, Poland, UK, and Italy), a consultancy company from Bulgaria, 5 universities from Kenya, 2 universities from Tanzania and 3 universities from Uganda.
The project seeks to build the Kenyan, Tanzanian and Ugandan universities’ capacities to lead and manage innovation that best fits their countries’ inclusive and sustainable development needs.
Prof. Stanley Waudo thanked the AHEAD team for convening the meeting that allows the stakeholders to understand the project activities. He stated that he hopes that the AHEAD project will help the University to develop capacity to address areas that need innovation at the University, industries and within the community.
The forum attracted participation from key stakeholders from Kenya Association of Manufacturers (KAM), Central Region Chapter and Linking Industries with Academic (LIWA).
“The industry faces the problem of a workforce that is lacking in innovativeness; I hope that through AHEAD, this will be addressed. KAM is currently partnering with GIZ on a project that is focusing on improving technical skills in the youth since the main policy focus of KAM this year is to develop workers skills and support innovativeness. Hence, AHEAD resonates very well with this focus,” said Mr. Mutuma, Central Region Chapter Coordinator, KAM.
Dr. Bibianne Waiganjo, Deputy Vice-Chancellor in-charge of Academic noted that some of the products we are buying from China are derived from student innovative projects. She encouraged the participants to embrace the spirit of innovation in the curriculum. She also thanked KAM and LIWA for participating in the meeting and encouraged them to work closely with the University.
The overall objective of the AHEAD program is to enhance the management, governance, teaching, research and evaluation capacities of the Kenyan, Tanzanian and Ugandan Partner Universities in view of enabling them to implement the knowledge triangle and better integrate their research, education and innovation functions in support of innovation for sustainable development and inclusive growth.
Dr. Peter G. Kirira, Director MKU Foundation is the AHEAD project manager at Mount Kenya University.