“For countries to achieve significant levels of economic and human development, there has to be some industrialization,” says 2016 IDRC Research Award recipient Gussai Sheikheldin. “Some institutions within the state help steer the process.”
Public technology intermediaries (PTI), as they are called, have been an important part of Tanzania's national development efforts since the 1970s, he says. But while Tanzania is undergoing significant economic growth, the industrial sector is lagging. How can the country’s PTIs be revamped to spur innovation?
In working to find out, “I really learned a lot in terms of industrial policy and the various paths that countries take toward industrialization,” he says. “The research enhanced my knowledge and understanding of how industrialization takes place, particularly for low-income countries that are pushing to get to the middle-income, semi-industrialized level.”
“The main purpose of the findings is to share them with Tanzanian public technology intermediaries,” says Sheikheldin. “If the research reaches the right people, the people who can actually use it, that will be sufficient for me.”