State-owned National Commission for Science and Technology (NCST) says it is working towards ensuring that all research and innovations are helping towards achieving the goals of the Malawi 2063 (MW 2063) vision.
NCST has since disclosed it will soon launch a “national research agenda” to align research themes or thematic areas to goals towards achieving MW 2063.
NCST Acting Director General, Gift Kadzamira, made the sentiments on Wednesday in Lilongwe when she briefed journalists about the commission’s 4th National Research Dissemination Conference (NRDC) scheduled for 25th to 27th January.
NCST is organizing the conference in collaboration with the National Planning Commission (NPC), another state-owned body overseeing the implementation of MW 2063.
The forthcoming NRDC will be a platform for local researchers, innovators, experts and think tanks to present available research and innovations and refine and scale them up to be able to solve Malawi’s many challenges.
Kadzamira said Malawi, like many other countries, cannot achieve socioeconomic development without research and innovation.
“Research helps countries to solve problems in many crucial areas including health, agriculture and education, among others. Solution based research and innovation in such areas can also help us achieve our vision as a nation,” said Kadzamira.
She added the conference will, like other NRDCs before, enable NCST to take stock of research results, considering that the commission provides grants to some researchers and innovators to enable them carry out their projects.
NPC Research Manager, Andrew Jamali, concurred with Kadzamira, adding NRDC “is one of the key interventions in Malawi’s development space as the country is moving towards realizing the vision of an inclusively wealthy and self reliant nation”.
He further said the nation needs to spin its works towards manufacturing, innovation and science and technology, because manufacturing and industrialization is key to the nation’s vision as it cuts across all the pillars and enablers of MW 2063.
“Our research and innovations need to be transforming the way we do things in the economy and making things easier so that Malawi becomes as competitive as possible within the region towards our aspirations for developing this nation.
“With all the research, innovations and technologies being proposed and advanced, we need to ensure we are enhancing productivity in all sectors of the economy.
“The forthcoming NRDC should be a space where we begin to see how Malawi can harness the potential that exists within the region and the country itself to spin our growth potential and realize the vision we are talking about,” Jamali said.
Pegged at MK39 million, the conference will also attract NGOs, government MDAs and private sector players. The organizers are appealing for more support, saying they have limited resources and that the budget could shoot.