November 11, 2016
Tuesday 8th November – The guest speaker at BITRI 10th Public Seminar, Professor Seeram Ramakrishna impressed on the need to invest in scientific research and up-skilling of human capital for achievement of competitiveness and improvement of lives.
Professor Ramakrishna who is Director, Center for Nanofibers & Nanotechnology and Leader of Future of Manufacturing at the National University of Singapore is among the world’s most influential scientific minds and is a highly-cited researchers in Materials Science. During the presentation to the seminar topic “Nanofibers and Nanomaterials-Emerging Opportunities” Professor Ramakrishna started by outlining the development projectile of Singapore over the past 51 years since its attainment of independence, chronicling its journey as a shipping outpost to a highly-innovative territory with impressive global competitiveness rankings.
Professor Ramakrishna said that despite Singapore being an island, its economy had grown over decades due to the geographic location as a link for ships from other parts of the world heading to Asia and vice versa. He further gave an overview how Singapore had endeavoured to diversify its economy by infusing branches of tourism such as event tourism and health tourism. In his presentation, Professor Ramakrishna highlighted that nanotechnology had countless benefits and could be used in agriculture, food and nutrition. He said nanotechnology was an emerging pathway for material innovations and BITRI could position itself as an engineering contractor of nanofiber fabrication. To highlight, the importance of research to the government of Singapore, Professor Ramakrishna plotted the investment in the sector over years and revealed that from 2015 to 2020, the country invested US$20 billion in science and research.
The Deputy Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Tertiary Education, Research Science and Technology Dr Kekgonne Baipoledi thanked the Professor Ramakrishna for his interest in working with Botswana. The BITRI Seminar Series aims to share and exchange research ideas on topics of current relevance to our mandate in contributing to Botswana’s socio-economic development.
His Honour, the Vice President of the Republic of Botswana, Mr Mokgweetsi Masisi graced the occasion accompanied by the Minister of Tertiary Education, Research, Science and Technology Honourable Dr Alfred Madigele as well as Assistant Minister Tertiary Education, Research, Science and Technology Mr Fidelis Molao.
The BITRI Seminar Series aims to share and exchange research ideas on topics of current relevance to our mandate in contributing to Botswana’s socio-economic development.