Tanzania Daily News (Dar es Salaam)

29 June 2012

Tanzania: Inadequate Funding, Skills Impede Development Plan

INADEQUATE funding for research and development and lack of critical mass of skilled human resources have drastically affected the execution of the country's five-year Development Plan 2011/12-2015/16.

Opening the second Annual Research workshop organized by Science Technology, and Innovation Policy Research Organization (STIPRO) in Dar es Salaam yesterday, Deputy Executive Secretary, President's Office, Planning commission (POPC) Eng. Happiness Mgalula said the country was currently facing low enrolment into science subjects.

The gist of Tanzania Development Vision 2025 which was formulated in early 2000 stipulates that by 2025, Tanzania is expected to have thorough unprecedented economic transformation and development to achieve middle income status characterised by high level of industrialization, competitiveness, quality livelihood and rule of law.

To enable the country attain its goals timely, said Eng. Mgalula, the government recognizes that Science Technology and Innovation (STI) as critical to economic growth, as it forms the basis for sustainable economic growth and prosperity in the society through increased productivity.

"Development Vision 2025 plan to raise productivity of labour force, increased competitiveness and creation of employment opportunities and well being of society" she said. Eng. Mgalula further said that the review of vision 2025 which was done in 2010 showed clearly that sustainable socio-economic development is only possible with meaningful input from science, technology and innovation.

She added that there was a need to establish a well functioning STI infrastructure and particularly harnessing Information Communication technology (ICT) to foster efficient and high yielding production process. Addressing the two-day workshop, STIPRO Executive Director Dr Bitrina Diyamett said that policy research was a crucial part of any policy process, because innovation is a complex multi actor field.

"Issues surrounding innovation are dynamic. They move targets without constant follow up through systematic research. It is very easy to miss to these targets when devising policies" she added. Dr Bitrina said that STIPRO is committed to sharing and discussing its research outputs and in so doing instigate debate on science, technology and innovation policy issues and together find joint solutions.

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