Prof. Banarbas Nawangwe, the University vice-chancellor. File photo
Ivan Tsebeni
Journalist @New Vision

Makerere University has revealed a plan to prioritize research and innovation for the next 100 years.

Prof. Banarbas Nawangwe, the University vice-chancellor, said the institution has for the past 100 years focused on building human resource which he said will help to boost research.

Nawangwe added the university has made efforts to standardize the research aiding facilities such as the innovation hub which he said is under construction.

"As Makerere University, we will focus more and find solutions to the country's challenges," Nawangwe said.

He emphasized that for the country to avert the increasing economic limitations and deaths, climate change, health and poverty, the listed should be given the attention they deserve.

"Compounding the climate change and food security will help the country curb the increasing deaths. We are seeing diseases we never saw before, we must address climate change," Nawangwe.

He also observed that the population in the country is growing steadily, but said should not be seen as a disadvantage but rather an opportunity to broaden the scope of research and innovation.

"We should target the growing population to maximize our innovation and research projects. We have the ready market," Nawangwe said.

Opening its doors to only 14 students in 1922, Makerere University has grown to become one of the most prestigious Universities in Africa and the World over.

Nawangwe said this year's celebration marks a century of excellent services, and offers a chance to look beyond, and see how to “Leverage the 100 Years of Excellence in Building a Transformed Society”.

Nawangwe was speaking during the launch of the fifth evidence to action conference and exhibition at Makerere University.

The report by the UK Department for International Development indicated that in recent years, the number of universities in Uganda has grown rapidly, but most of them have scarce research capacity.

Research production is limited by a severe lack of funding, which affects both the ability to undertake research and the decision to embark on a research career in the first place.

Adjusted by population, the number of researchers in Uganda is 75% lower than the African average and the gross expenditure on research and development (GERD) is among the lowest in the continent at just 0.17% of the GDP in 2014.

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