IPTTOs to stimulate economic viability of Nigerian Innovation System -say DG-NOTAP
The Director General of the National Office for Technology Acquisition and Promotion (NOTAP), Dr. DanAzumi Mohammed Ibrahim has said that Intellectual Property and Technology Transfer Offices (IPTTOs) being established by NOTAP in some Nigerian tertiary and research Institutions are capable of stimulating the economic viability of those Institutions.
Dr. Ibrahim made this statement in his opening remarks during the commissioning of IPTTO at Usmanu Danfodiyo University Sokoto (UDUS) which is the 39th IPTTOs established by NOTAP across the country.
He stated that NOTAP as a regulatory agency charged with the responsibility of evaluation and registration of Technology Transfer Agreements, noted the huge amount of foreign exchange being expended on the importation of foreign technology, collaborated with the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) in 2006 to establish IPTTOs in Nigerian tertiary and Research Institutions to provide locally motivated technology.
The DG further noted that the establishment of IPTTO in UDUS was to inculcate the Intellectual Property culture in the researchers and ensure that they no longer carry out research as mere academic exercise but engage in R&D activities that will generate Patent that could subsequently yield royalty for the Institution.
He challenged the University researchers to make maximum use of the center like other Institutions where IPTTOs have spurred inventive and innovative activities which have resulted to Patents generation and commercialization of R&D results.
He lamented the low ranking of Nigerian Universities in the world which he attributed to low IPR culture, adding that Patents as well as scholarly peer-reviewed publications are important criteria for ranking tertiary institutions.
He further stated that universities in developed countries have demonstrated that inventions from R&D centers, (equivalent to IPTTOs) are veritable tools through which Tertiary and research Institutions can economically sustain themselves via commercialization and licensing of their R&D results. He referred to the Nigerian Universities Commission 2013 retreat report in which the University of North Carolina generated $1.5billion from IP annually, to drive home his point.
The Vice Chancellor of the University, Prof. Abdullahi A. Zuru thanked NOTAP for the confidence reposed on the Institution which resulted in the establishment of the IPTTO and promised maximum use of the center.
He disclosed that the University had compiled a list of “knowledge workers” who are expected to interface with NOTAP to ensure that R&D results emanating from the Institution are patented.