Lancaster University has developed an award-winning model of eco-innovation, where academics and research students work with businesses to develop innovative products, toolkits and services with a positive environmental benefit.
The eco-innovation in Africa will offer new business opportunities and sustainable, equitable growth, more efficient or responsible use of natural resources, a low carbon economy in all sectors and reduce impacts on the environment.
Professor Kirk Semple, Director of International Engagement, Lancaster Environment Centre speaking during the opening of a three-day collaborative research springboard said the idea was to link academia and industries. The event was to co-create and co-design plans for transformational, research-led innovation with real impact in the “post-Paris world”.
The forum would build on a previous international event, where the University identified and considered some key challenges and potential partnership.
He said Lancaster University was working on mechanisms and others to enhance partnerships and potential collaborations to promote and bridge the gap between businesses and academia in West Africa. “We have chosen to work with partners that we have in West Africa,” he added.
He said as part of the event, there would be an opportunity to consider potential strategic partnership and funding avenues. Professor Nigel Paul, Director of Global Eco-Innovation, Lancaster University said there was €1.5 billion about to be disbursed from the British Government to support scientific research.
He said Lancaster University would launch an African model of the eco-innovation developed with the University of Benin, Nigeria. He said it would to improve on research among Universities in West Africa and link it to businesses.
He said it was an opportunity for African countries to learn from their European counterparts and build the infrastructure to grow their economies.