Lagos – Prof. Pat Utomi, a renowned political economist, on Wednesday decried poor funding of researches and the under usage of its outcomes for socioeconomic benefits.
Utomi spoke in an interview on the sidelines of the ongoing International Conference on Knowledge and Innovation Management (ICKIM).
The conference, organised by Babcock University, Ilishan-Remo in Ogun, holding from Jan.14 to 18.
Its theme is: “Stimulating A Culture of Knowledge Management and Innovation For Sustainable Development.’’
Utomi said: “There is no adequate funding of researches in Nigeria, and the result of research is left isolated and often taken out of the country and commercialised abroad.
“The town and gown relationship have suffered a great challenge, especially under the military regime.
“As a result of this, the prestige a university deserves for its work done in researches and its direct relevance to socio progress have been denied.”
Utomi also urged the Federal Government to build development strategy around endowment and value chain to compete favourably in the global world.
He said that no country would be able to compete globally if it does not recognise the endowment and value chain around it.
“Nigeria is the biggest producer of cassava in the world; but there is more cassava based products from Indonesia in the world than from Nigeria.
“How we take our endowment and become globally dominant in those value chains is very important to building our development strategy around endowment and value chain,” he said.
Also, Prof. Daisy Selematsela, an Information and Knowledge Management in University of Johannesburg, South Africa, also charged knowledge practitioners to be at the forefront of understanding the needs of the society, nation and institution.
Selematsela told NAN that this was key to enabling them to proffer solutions to the societal and institutional problems through researches.
“We need to go out, work with the institutions by examining their annual performance plan and ensure that they are guided on how best they can achieve institutional goal based on their annual plan.
“For us to be able to address the Sustainable Development Goals, we need to consider the institution performance growth and how to supports them,’’ she said.
In his remarks, Prof. Ademola Tayo, the Vice-Chancellor, Babcock University, described the theme of the conference as apt and contemporary.
Tayo said that there was no better time to discuss it than now when knowledge had been recognised as the most important source of lasting competitive advantage in organisation.
According to him, every organisation needs new thinking and fresh ideas for a sustainable development and success.
Tayo said that organisation was also moving from mere information processing and problem solving entities to those that were knowledge seeking and knowledge creating.
Not less than 500 foreign and local participants attended the conference.
It aims at bringing together academic and research scholars as well as educators and practitioners to explain and share their experiences and research findings on all aspects of development. (NAN)