GIS – 30 September 2016: ‘Government recognises that technology and innovation have to be part of the development strategy of any country which aspires to have a successful economy. This is why, for the first time since independence, the initiative to have a Ministry with a portfolio on Technology and Innovation has been taken. The drive is also to encourage Mauritians focus more on innovation and on what can be delivered’, said the Minister of Technology, Communication and Innovation, Mr Etienne Sinatambou, yesterday at Ebène Heights, in Ebène Cyber-city.
The Minister was speaking at the opening of the 9th edition of Inventors’ Open Day placed under the theme Driving transformative Entrepreneurial and Social Innovation. The aim was to promote awareness on innovation and Intellectual Property (IP) in Mauritius.
In his address, the Minister stated that the country will achieve enhanced progress when researchers, students, teachers, scientists, academics and all citizens will think and act smart. He thus appealed to citizens to, if not invent, at least innovate and if they have not innovated to think smarter and act smarter for the benefit of the country.
For Minister Sinatambou, innovation and technology and ICT are part of an inextricable nexus, whereby today ICT is an enabler for technology and innovation. He announced that a box for innovation, robotics, and nanotechnology will be proposed at the next Infotech, which is the major annual ICT event in Mauritius organised by the National Computer Board and, scheduled later this year. The Minister also spoke of the ‘raison d’être’ of inventions which, he said, are made not just for the sake of inventing but for making the lives of people easier.
The Open Day brought together more than 30 participants from Research and Development institutions, SMEs, enforcement agencies, as well as innovators, IP practitioners, entrepreneurs, creators and users of IP assets, stakeholders from different sectors and members of the public.
The 9th Inventors’ Open Day
The event was organised by the Mauritius Research Council’s (MRC) Technology Transfer Office with presentations made by two groups, namely: Small and Medium Enterprises Development Authority (SMEDA); and, Global Rainbow Foundation (GRF). Discussions focused on the following: SME Development Schemes, and, GRF Assistive Devices for Persons with Disabilities.
Moreover, the Ministry of Technology, Communication and Innovation scheduled several activities in the context of Inventors’ Day on 29 September 2016, namely:
- A Workshop on leveraging Open Source Software at the Municipality of Port Louis. Open source software is software that can be freely used, changed, and shared (in modified or unmodified form) by anyone. Open source software is made by many people, and distributed under licenses that comply with the Open Source Definition.
The aim of the workshop was to sensitise young people about free and open source software (FOSS) in education and how FOSS can be leveraged to bring innovation.
- Launching of an e-ideas, a new online service to enable communication with Government on technology, communication and innovation.
It is recalled that Inventors' Day is a day of the year set aside by a country to recognise the contributions of inventors. Inventors Day is celebrated by the MRC during the months of May and September each year.
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