June 13, 2016
On Thursday June 9, 2016 BITRI along with Companies and Intellectual Property Authority (CIPA), Copyright Society of Botswana (COSBOTS), Botswana Innovation Hub (BIH) and Department of Research Science and Technology (DRST) joined forces to celebrate World Intellectual Property Day at the Limkokwing University Hall.
The commemorations, held under the theme ‘Digital Creativity: Culture Re- imagined’ sought to explore how to create, distribute, access and create commercial-exploit culture in the digital age. BITRI used the platform to sensitise customers on the BITRI IP Policy, contracts and agreements necessary to be in place during research as well as transferring research outputs onto business opportunities. The event was also used to enhance awareness of Morabaraba game, Kgalagadi Sand Building Block/ Brick Technology (KSBB) and the Seding Solar Street Lighting.
During the keynote address, Director, Trade and Consumer Affairs in the Ministry of Investment, Trade and Industry, Ms Rosinah Bontsi said “In the global village we are in, it has become more than just the natural resources we have as a country. It is also about the intellectual property our country and its citizens have and through intellectual property Botswana can have more improved products and be able to compete globally.”
Ms Bontsi further called upon the partnering organizations of the event to have intellectual property policies at organizational level which will guide the research and innovation taking place in the various organizations.
“As the Government of Botswana, we have seen it fit to observe this day as we have continuously done so in the last five years and we will continue to commemorate this day even in the coming years to improve the awareness on intellectual property” Ms Bontsi concluded.
To further explore the theme, a panel consisting of among others like Musician Zeus, Photographer Ulf Nermark, and Limkokwing Lecturer Mr Kaelo Sabone shared insights and experiences on IP issues relating to their fields. Discussions and debate sessions also focused on the growth of the creative industries particularly in the fields of music, film, literary works, art and photography and how technologies such as social media, smartphones and development of applications affect those fields.
BITRI’s Technology Transfer Officer, Kesupemang Pitlagano in his Vote of Thanks, gave a research perspective to IP and urged stakeholders to always take steps in protecting their IP as it is a main competitiveness factor in the global economy and a differentiator in the success amongst individuals, organizations and countries that implement IP laws, policies and frameworks and those that do not. BITRI was represented by the Communications Officer, Frank Rakgomo, TTO Mr. Pitlagano, Communications Intern, Innocent Molato, and ICTAssociates, Modise Kemelo and Anderson Modikele.