Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology’s School of Business organized a three-day international conference to provide an engagement forum for academia, industry and public sector to address the gap between academic and industrial research needs.
The virtual conference themed: Contemporary Business Research in the Dynamic Industry driven by Technology and Entrepreneurship held between August 26-28, 2020, attracted over 80 researchers from Kenya, Uganda, Canada, USA and Nigeria. Among the professional bodies in attendance were Kenya Revenue Authority, Institute of Certified Public Accountants of Kenya, Kenya Union of Savings and Credit Co-operatives, and Institute of Certified Investment and Financial Analysts.
While welcoming the participants to the conference, Principal College of Engineering and Technology, Dr. Hiram Nderitu who officially opened the conference on behalf of JKUAT Vice Chancellor Prof. Victoria Wambui Ngumi, congratulated the participants for coming together to address the gap between academia and industry saying it will create a path way for universities to move their innovations from the shelves to the market.
“The deliberations will seek to harness scientific research through technology and entrepreneurship for economic development. Leaving research findings on the shelves of university libraries should be a thing of the past as we look forward to building synergies and collaborations with the industry to actualize,” said Prof Ngumi.
She stressed the importance of the conference in community development saying it was not only beneficial for personal growth and networking but also a key element in addressing obstacles that impede the implementation of the Big 4 Agenda in Kenya.
Dean School of Business Dr. Florence Memba expressed her gratitude to sponsors of the conference and the participants for turning out in large numbers to deliberate and examine mechanisms for bridging the gap between academic research and the research needs of industry.
Dr. Memba urged the participants to grab the rare opportunity to network and forge meaningful networks which will form the basis of future collaborations.
Head of Kenya School of Revenue Administration, Dr. Fred Mugambi who was the keynote speaker during the first day of the conference talked on the role of training institution in aligning public revenue collection to a rapidly evolving socioeconomic environment.
He decried the absence of proper work ethic in Africa which he said is the key ingredient in the current state of poverty. Dr. Mugambi said Africa ought to be a producing continent instead of a consumer continent due to the availability of 60% of arable land.
He lauded JKUAT for being at the forefront of technological innovations.