The minister of Higher Education, Research, Science and Technology (MoHERST) has advised Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) institutions to capitalise on the Intellectual Property (IP) regime to help take their work to another level of protection and subsequent commercialisation.
Pierre Gomez was speaking on Wednesday at a two-day seminar on intellectual property held at Sir Dawda Kairaba Jawara International Conference Centre.
“My visit to up-country recently was to inspect TVET institutions in which I was amazed by the number of innovations and inventions being developed by students and teachers. And if these are protected it can generate a lot to the country’s economy,” he said.
The Higher Education minister said in the MoHERST Strategic Plan (2021 – 2025), they encourage public institutions benefiting from public funds or subvention, to nurture activities that provide innovations and technical solutions to problems faced by our societies.
“This we believe can rely heavily on the benefits of the IP regime to generate a lot of income from patent licensing of products and processes. I further challenge the local institutions, especially those under my purview to promote and uphold IPR, especially as it relates to plagiarism, online training material content development, software development, nurturing the patent system and its benefits, as well as institutionalize Intellectual Property Policies in line with the National Intellectual Property and Policy and Strategy (NIPSS) of The Gambia.”
This, he said, would help create an enabling IP environment that fits effectively within the wider innovation ecosystem that promotes innovation and intellectual property rights protection to growth and development.
Minister Gomez reminded that the establishment of the University of Science Engineering and Technology (USET) and Regional TVET Centers across the country have been anchored on the primary objective of developing the skills for middle-level learners who in turn will be innovators and entrepreneurs that bring about solutions that will address societal challenges as well as meet the emerging trends in technological development.