The Kenya Institute for Public Policy Research and Analysis (KIPPRA) is organizing its 4th Annual Regional Conference themed, “Science, Technology, and Innovation (ST&I) in Enhancing Delivery of the Big 4 Development Agenda”. he conference brings together stakeholders to exchange views on policy options and measures pertaining the role of ST&I in guiding the country’s transition to a knowledge-driven economy that supports realization of the Big 4 Agenda. The conference is planned for23rd – 25th June 2021 in Nairobi County. The conference is hosted by KIPPRA in collaboration with other key stakeholders including the National Commission for Science, Technology, and Innovation (NACOSTI) alongside other government ministries, departments, and agencies. The conference will also bring together delegates comprising officials from national and county governments, representatives of national authorities from the regional economic blocs, regional think tanks, as well as development partners, civil society, persons with disability and other special interest groups.
The Kenya Vision 2030 proposes intensified application of ST&I to raise productivity and efficiency levels across the social, economic, and political pillars. The Constitution of Kenya 2010 as well explicitly places a premium on the generation and management of a knowledge- based economy. Nonetheless, the ST&I sector has been experiencing myriad of challenges, which have slowed the development of a knowledge-based economy. Among the key challenges are a weak policy framework to facilitate effective integration of ST&I in all sectors of the economy; “Silo Mentality”; and inadequate funding where the expected 2% of the national budget to fund ST&I, has decreased over the years. Further, is perennial non- alignment of education and training curricula to industry needs which has led to skills mismatch and under-employment.
The conference will provide a forum for sharing knowledge through discussions on various issues key among them: