On February 23rd, 2022, Emerging Communities for Africa organized a virtual Stakeholders’ Engagement Session for Nigeria, Ghana, Uganda, and Tanzania. The engagement session aimed to identify challenges and seek out opportunities to strengthen DIHs while also ensuring seamless collaboration between all stakeholders in Academia, Private Sector, and Government in the innovation ecosystem in Africa and the European Union.
Marilena Maragkou, Dissemination Manager of AfriConEU and Project Coordinator of Youthmakers Hub, presented the project and highlighted the benefits for participants and practical ways to be actively involved in the project. Later on, Eunice Baguma Ball, Director, and Head of Programmes of ATBN presented the identified challenges and opportunities for strengthening African Digital Innovation Hubs based on the research conducted in the framework of the AfriConEU project. According to Eunice Baguma Ball, there is a need to provide hubs with funding and expertise to develop a sustainable model that considers infrastructure and skills gaps to support actors to navigate the challenges. Then, Joseph Gaylord from dPixel gave an overview of the European Digital Innovation Hub ecosystem. There are 6.850 coworking spaces around Europe and $58 billion invested in European start-ups in 2021. Finally, Ade Olowojoba, a member of Emerging Communities for Africa, presented the Report from a Closed co-creation session on strategies for seamless collaboration between all stakeholders in Nigeria in February 2022. According to the report, the private sector and academia should identify ways of collaboration to bridge the gap between these two sectors. In terms of funding, there should be a balance on how the budget is being distributed. At the end of the session, several questions were addressed to the speakers, and a fruitful conversation took place among the participants highlighting Advocacy and Training the main pillars this project should focus more on.
You can find more details about the event on our Twitter.