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BITRI Participates in the 2023 Innovation Botswana Day

Botswana Institute for Technology Research and Innovation (BITRI) participated in the 2023 Innovation Botswana Day held at the Botswana Digital and Innovation Hub (BDIH) Science and Technology Park on the 26th of October 2023. The objectives of the event were among others, to celebrate and showcase innovations, create a platform for networking and dialogue amongst local and regional players in the Science, Technology, and Innovation (STI) space, prompt discussion and debate on relevant issues, as well as to celebrate milestones made towards supporting innovation and entrepreneurial activity in the STI space. BITRI showcased its key STI outputs including but not limited to the Wireless Sensor Network (WSN) applications, Kgalagadi Sand Building Block Technology, Water Desalination Project, Biodigester prototype, and the Energy Efficient Cookstove. When officially opening the event, the Minister of Communications, Knowledge, and Technology, Honourable Thulagano Segokgo challenged local innovators to develop innovations that provide solutions to pain points encountered by citizens in order to improve their lives and build a robust innovation ecosystem. He also encouraged innovators to utilise the P50 million allocated by the government to the Innovation Fund. Honourable Segokgo called on all players in the research and innovation space to revitalise the drive towards a knowledge-based economy, to fast-track the move away from dependence on mineral resources, emphasising the importance of all stakeholders to work towards the accomplishment of this objective. He urged all to take advantage of initiatives such as the recently launched SmartBots in a bid to attain effective and efficient service de-livery for all citizens, thereby, enabling inclusivity. The programme for the day also included a panel discussion on the theme ‘The Role of Innovation in the Knowledge Economy’. The BITRI Executive Director – Technologies, Dr Sebusang Sebusang was among the panelists. Dr Sebusang presented from the perspective that an effective innovation ecosystem required contribution from all stakeholders, with components such as adequate funding being critical to enabling applied research and development and the unearthing of inventions and innovations that have impact.

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