THE Commission for Science and Technology (Costech), through financial support from the Human Development Innovation Fund (HDIF), has provided a 1.3bn/- grant to support grassroots innovations and innovation hubs in the country.
HDIF Team Leader, David McGinty revealed this in Dar es Salaam early this week at the opening of Innovation Week 2019 with the theme: "Scaling and Sustaining Innovations for Human Development."
He said the grant award went to innovators, who successfully won the call for proposals advertised last year. Mr McGinty said HDIF had learned a lot from running the largest innovation programme in the country, supported by almost £40m from UKAid to innovative ideas to pilot and scale in education, health and water, sanitation and hygiene (Wash).
"HDIF is very excited to keep supporting innovations in Tanzania and sharing our recommendations through our five-year report, which will give all innovation players some insights as they invest in, design or implement projects," said Mr McGinty.
The report entitled 'Investing in Social Innovation and Technology in Tanzania', which looks back to the growth of an innovation ecosystem over the five years that HDIF has been running, was launched yesterday.
He said HDIF had been working closely with the government through Costech and other partners to ensure innovations that had been funded were scaled and sustained for the development of the country.
Explaining how the grant will be utilised, Costech Director General, Dr Amos Nungu, said HDIF awards presented by the Minister for Education, Science and Technology, Prof Joyce Ndalichako, early this month would fund 30 projects of which 15 of them were dedicated to grassroots innovations and 15 to supporting the growth of innovation hubs in the country.
For his part, Deputy Minister for Education Science and Technology, William Ole Nasha said innovations were among the issues given priority in the fifth phase government.
He said the second five-year development plan emphasised industrialisation as a catalyst for achieving the middle-income and industrial economy, thus innovators must innovate for the demand and needs of the country.
Mr Ole Nasha also hinted that apart from supporting innovators, the government was in an advanced stage in the preparation of the Science, Technology and Innovation Policy that would help take innovation to the next level.
Innovation Week 2019 is a week-long series of events organised by the Human Development Innovation Fund (HDIF) and Costech with support from UKAid.
It will be marked on March 30, this year.