Diaspora and Technology Transfer in Building Bridges for Innovation
Diaspora communities play a crucial role in the transfer of technology from their host countries to their home countries.
By leveraging their skills, knowledge, and networks, diaspora members can introduce new technologies, promote innovation, and contribute to the technological advancement of their home countries.
African diaspora communities, including the Nigerian diaspora, have demonstrated their potential in technology transfer. They have introduced new technologies in various sectors, such as agriculture, health, education, and information and communication technology (ICT).
Several Ways Through Which Diaspora Contributes to Technology Transfer Include:
1. Entrepreneurship: Many diaspora members start businesses in their home countries, introducing technologies and business models they have encountered in their host countries.
2. Knowledge Exchange: Diaspora can share their knowledge and skills through training, workshops, and mentoring, helping to build the technological capacity of individuals and institutions in their home countries.
3. Collaborative Research: Diaspora researchers often engage in collaborative research with institutions in their home countries, contributing to the development and application of new technologies.
4. Investment in Technology-based Ventures: Diaspora can invest in technology-based ventures in their home countries, promoting the growth of tech startups and the development of tech ecosystems.
Maximizing the potential of the diaspora in technology transfer requires addressing several challenges. These include lack of access to finance for tech entrepreneurs, weak institutional capacity for technology absorption and innovation, and issues related to intellectual property rights.
It's essential for home countries to create an enabling environment that encourages and facilitates diaspora's contributions to technology transfer. This includes developing robust science, technology, and innovation policies, strengthening the innovation ecosystem, and fostering strong diaspora-home country partnerships.
Summarily, the diaspora, including the African and Nigerian diaspora, can be a key driver of technology transfer and innovation in their home countries. By building bridges between the technological landscapes of their host and home countries, they can contribute significantly to technological progress and development.
- Saxenian, A. (2006). The New Argonauts: Regional Advantage in a Global Economy. Harvard University Press.
- Nkongolo-Bakenda, J. M., & Chrysostome, E. V. (2013). Engaging diasporas as international entrepreneurs in developing countries: In search of determinants. Journal of International Entrepreneurship, 11(1), 30-64.
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