A new report from the BIO-EARN Programme provides food for thought on innovations, and guidance when developing BioInnnovate Concept Notes. This paper distils lessons from a study which has sought to illuminate the process of bioscience innovation in Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda.
It concludes with a set of policy recommendations that may enhance bioscience innovations in East Africa. The authors conclude that there is “no single, one-fits-all solution to successful technological innovation. Indeed, there may be a number of possible pathways to success. What is important in current and future bioscience programs is to identify demand for a specific technology, and to plot the essential links as early as possible in the research, development, dissemination process.
The question of demand is crucial in making an assessment as to whether a particular innovation may have commercial prospects and can therefore be distributed in a market context, through commercial channels, or whether it has no immediate market prospects but, because it is considered important for environmental or social reasons (and therefore a “public good” technology) needs to be developed and disseminated in a non-market context, through public authorities, community groups, farmers’ groups, or NGOs.”