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Austria gives financial backing to Nigerian tech hub

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By Tochukwu Maxwell

An Austrian cultural and scientific center, Ars Electronica,  has entered into a partnership with a Nigerian web developer, Mr. Oscar Ekponimo, for the launch of ‘Gallery of Code’, an indigenous research and development laboratory, aimed at supporting a global network of innovation hubs, academia and industry through technical and creative skills training.

Ekponimo said the  aim of the center,  located in Gudu District in Abuja,  is to provide space, develop ideas and conduct workshops to foster home-grown creative solutions to Africa’s challenges by supporting next generation talent across disciplines.

He said, “Equipped with  advanced prototyping tools and machines supplied by Ars Electronica and funding from the Austrian Government this ‘brainbox lab’ will bring together international scientists, technologists and media artists to produce jointly developed projects, skills training and knowledge transfer with talented Nigerian students and start-up entrepreneurs.”

In discussing the collaboration and mission of the lab, Ekponimo added that, “Ars Electronica brings a global network of advanced scientific and technological know-how, I am confident that Gallery of Code will be the epicenter of revolutionary inventions and innovation that solves many of Africa’s challenges”

He further stated that  Gallery of code is a rich development and creative laboratory put together in partnership with Ars Electrica with other universities in Abuja.

According to him, Gallery of Code is offering tools, equipment, training and advanced technology to empower regular people on the street like Abuja with the skills and tools to enable them create solution in health or education and agriculture.

In her remarks the representative of the Austrian Ambassador to Nigeria, Mrs. Karin Pregler, said the research lab is one of the ways the Austrian mission facilitates exchange and cooperation between Austrian entities and countries in which they work.

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