By Nana Achiaa Aboagye
Ghana is part of six African pilot countries, taking measures to strengthen their national and regional Science, Technology and Innovation, STI, policies, to achieve Sustainable Development Goals.
A Consultative Group Workshop on National Monitoring and Evaluation Framework was therefore organized by the Council for Science and Industrial Research-Science and Technology Policy Research Institute (CSIR-STEPRI), in collaboration with the Ministry of Environment, Science and Technology and Innovation (MESTI), in Accra. The aim was to track Ghana’s progress, so far, at its STI for the SDG’s roadmap.
It is evident that Science, Technology and Innovation (STI) have brought dramatic transformation to societies and economies in recent years. However, countries needed to strategically plan processes of transformation to ensure they are not left behind in the STI transformation as far as development is concerned.
Ghana is one of the countries participating in the Global Pilot Programme, launched in July 2019, by UN Inter-Agency Task Team for the preparation of roadmaps of Science, Technology and Innovation for the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals (STI4SDGs). An important initiative linked to the preparation of the roadmap is a SIDA-funded project “Strengthening the Science, Technology and Innovation (STI) System for Sustainable Development”, which began in 2021.
Also, the design of a Monitoring and Evaluation system is an essential component of the STI4SDGs Roadmap. Hence, officials from the Council for Science and Industrial Research – Science and Technology Policy Research Institute (CSIR – STEPRI) in collaboration with the Ministry of Environment, Science and Technology and Innovation (MESTI), have organized a Consultative Group Workshop in Accra.
The Director of Science, Technology and Innovation (STI) at the Ministry of Environment, Science and Technology and Innovation (MESTI), Mr. Kwamena Quaison, intimated that Ghana is making efforts at enhancing the capability STI application and development in the country.
He said It is expected that the Monitoring and Evaluation will help in tracking Ghana‘s progress in strengthening the STI system with reference to the recommendation on science and scientific researchers and other key STI’s related instruments such as the national STI policy, Ghana’s STI for SDG’s for roadmap, the medium term development plan amongst others. It also serves as a guide for building capacity in the Monitoring and Evaluation in government agencies, the private sector and academia.
He said the Ministry of Environment, Science and Technology and Innovation (MESTI) will oversee the activities regarding the monitoring and evaluation framework in collaboration with responsible ministries, departments,s and agencies.
He mentioned that they will ensure that responsible organizations mobilize the needed resources for the collection of data and reporting on STI Monitoring and Evaluation framework and see to the implementation of the framework.
The Director of Council for Science and Industrial Research- Science and Technology Policy Research Institute (CSIR-STEPRI). Dr. Wilhelmina Quaye reiterated Science, Technology and Innovation (STI) is the main driver for the social economic development of all countries including Ghana adding that as a developing country take Science, Technology and Innovation seriously.
She said the framework will help in building and revitalizing Africa’s scientific system by encouraging research, creating opportunities to nurture and support research output, slowing brain drain, addressing gender inequalities and accelerating the transition to a knowledge-based society which are all critical components for Africa.
The Science and Technology Policy Research Institute (STEPRI) is therefore responsible for the implementing Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency, SIDA-UNESCO project, under the auspices of the Ministry of Environment, Science and Technology and Innovation (MESTI). The project aims to strengthen the STI System in six selected pilot African countries, Congo, Ghana, Namibia, Sierra Leone, Tanzania, and Zimbabwe.