IST-Africa 2015 Conference

06 - 08 May 2015, Lilongwe, Malawi


Hosted by the Government of Malawi through the National Commission for Science and Technology, and Supported by the European Commission (EC) and African Union Commission (AUC), IST-Africa 2015 (May) is the tenth in an annual series of Ministerial Level Technology Research Conferences.

Focused on Information Society and ICT Policy Dialogues, International Development and Research Cooperation and Community Building, each conference brings together senior representatives of leading public, private, education and research organisations from 50 countries to discuss policy, share insight and identify collaboration opportunities.

The IST-Africa Conference Series is part of the IST-Africa Initiative, co-funded under the European Framework Programme since 2005 - current Contract No. 611795.

The goals of the IST-Africa Conference Series are to

- Support Development of the Information Society and Knowledge Economy in Africa

- Promote International Innovation, Research and Policy Cooperation and Coordination

- Showcase African Research and Innovation Capacity

- Stimulate exploitation of research results by the public and private sectors

The 5th Annual IST-Africa Living Lab Thematic Working Group meeting will take place on Tuesday as a pre-conference event with other co-located multi-lateral and bi-lateral meetings taking place during the week.

IST-Africa 2015 Programme

The Final Programme featured an Opening and Closing Plenary Session and a Scientific Programme with 34 thematically focused sessions featuring over 160 presenters from public, private, education and research organisations in 38 countries. The IST-Africa Living Labs Working Group meeting was on Tuesday 05 May.

Click here to download the Conference Report.

Plenary Speakers included:

- Hon. Dr. Emmanuel Fabiano, M.P., Minister of Education, Science and Technology, Malawi;

- Mrs Lonely Magreta, Permanent Secretary for Education, Science and Technology, Malawi;

- Mr Anthony Muyepa-Phiri, Director General, National Commission for Science and Technology, Malawi;

- Mr Andrew Kumbatira, Director General, Malawi Communications Regulatory Authority;

- Mr Victor Malewa, Deputy Director, Department of e-Government, Ministry of Information;

- Ms Souhila Amazouz, Infrastructure and Energy Department, African Union Commission

- Mr Morten Møller, Programme Coordination, DG CONNECT, European Commission, Belgium;

- Dr Harry Gombachika, Chief Executive Officer, Malawi Telecommunications Limited;

- Dr Pascal Hoba, CEO, UbuntuNet Alliance;

- Dr. Paulos Nyirenda, CEO, SDNP;

- Mrs Bessie Nyirenda, Management Consultant, Malawi Institute of Management; and

- Prof. John D. Kalenga Saka, Vice Chancellor, University of Malawi

- Dr. Robert Ridley, Vice Chancellor, Mzuzu University

- Prof. George Kanyama Phiri, Vice Chancellor, LUANAR

- Martin B. Thawani, Malawi University of Science and Technology

- Dr Charles Mwansambo, Principal Secretary, Ministry of Health

5th Living Labs Working Group Meeting

This participatory Working Group Meeting builds on progress achieved at previous IST-Africa Living Labs Working Group Meetings (IST-Africa 2011 - establishment of EU - AUC Living Labs Taskforce for Africa, IST-Africa 2012 - establishment of new Living Labs in Tanzania, IST-Africa 2013 - introduction of Living Lab concepts in Kenya, IST-Africa 2014 - - introduction of Living Lab concepts in Mauritius).

Cunningham, P. (2013) proposes that: "Living Labs are environments or a methodical approach focused on user-driven open innovation. End-user communities collaborate with Innovation Stakeholders (public, private, education and research, societal and funding sectors) in real-life settings to co-create innovative products, services, processes, business models or policies, or adapt existing ones, to better match market or societal needs. Successful deployments can be replicated or networked to achieve scale and wider impact ".

This 5th Annual Working Group Meeting which will take place on Tuesday as a pre-conference event provides an opportunity for all key Innovation Stakeholders to (a) learn more about the potential of leveraging Living Labs methodologies for socio-economic development and (b) contribute to the establishment of a network of experts and key stakeholders committed to supporting national and cross-border Collaborative Open Innovation in Africa.