Foreword from Dr. Martin Patrick Ongol
Science, Technology, and Innovation (STI) are expected to play a critical role in Uganda’s socioeconomic transformation, especially during this era of rapid global technological advancements alongside new and emerging challenges. With Uganda’s vision to achieve middle-income status by 2030, the country has to accelerate technology-driven approaches to strengthen its import-substitution strategy and build a strong human capital base. This will ensure that Uganda gainfully engages in this Fourth (or Fifth) Industrial Revolution.
The COVID-19 pandemic placed STI front and center of Uganda’s recovery strategy and has been vital in building system-wide resilience. The pandemic also demonstrated STI’s role as a key enabler in resolving the country’s persistent challenges like youth unemployment and climate change. One of the key mandates of the Uganda National Council for Science and Technology (UNCST) is to provide evidence for STI policy formulation to the Government of Uganda. The S&T data and information collected under this activity from state and non-state S&T institutions provide a strong knowledge resource for measuring the current S&T capacity and Uganda’s progression towards a Knowledge-Based Economy (KBE).
Therefore, this Research Outlook Report helps identify system deficits and gaps in S&T capacity necessary to build resilience to new and emerging challenges. While the Report provides comprehensive insights into the issues defining Uganda’s current STI landscape, the criticality for policy reforms in specific areas should be the mainstay. Reforms in STI training, gender inclusivity, research funding options, the utilisation of research results by the private sector, and the harnessing of research collaboration, are among some of the critical enablers that should be fast-tracked to ensure that Uganda can achieve some of its most national, regional and global targets for STI-led development.
I want to thank the UNCST team for their hard work toward the successful production of this 2022 Research Outlook Report. I want to extend our gratitude to the stakeholders who provided comments, data, and insights during this process.
I am confident that this report will catalyze new conversations and spur fundamental reforms across our vast STI system to ensure that no Ugandan is left behind in our country’s transformative journey.
Click to Download the Research Outlook Report 2023 and the Policy Brief