JICA Commits to Continue Supporting JKUAT’s Research Agenda

JICA Commits to Continue Supporting JKUAT’s Research Agenda

Human progress has been driven by advancements in Science, Technology, and Innovation (STI). To ensure that Africa attains such progress, Japan has played a leading role in developing the continent’s human resource capacity.

Over the years, the Japanese Government, through the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA), has fostered a long-term partnership that has benefited numerous staff members at Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology (JKUAT).

This partnership includes scholarships in MSc. and PhD programs, technical training facilities, and various initiatives. As a result of this support, JKUAT has established itself as a practically oriented technical university and has become the top choice for prospective students seeking higher education.

During a visit to JKUAT, June 21, 2023, Ms. Sachiko Imoto, the JICA HQ, Senior Vice President, commended JKUAT’s efforts in building the human resource capacity of Africa through the Pan African University of Science, Technology, and Innovation (PAUSTI).

Ms. Imoto stated that JICA is actively working to establish a network of African and Japanese universities to undertake joint research in STI and provide solutions to the challenges faced by society.

Ms. Imoto emphasized that in today’s knowledge-based economy, technology and innovation must contribute to all three dimensions of sustainable development: economic, social, and environmental aspects.

She also informed the meeting that JICA will mobilize the Japanese private sector to partner with universities in Africa, to support joint research as well as provide internship opportunities to students.

On her part, Vice Chancellor, Prof. Victoria Wambui Ngumi, expressed pride in the University’s recognition as a leading institution for Science, Technology, and Innovation in Africa.

“This recognition led to JKUAT being awarded the status of a host university for the Pan African University of Science, Technology, and Innovation (PAUSTI) and through this program, we have successfully developed the capacity of African youth in STI, making a valuable contribution to the entire continent,” said Prof. Ngumi.

Furthermore, Prof. Ngumi conveyed JKUAT’s aspirations to become a hub university, acting as a critical center for various Japanese entities. She said, the University is enthusiastic about extending its partnership with JICA beyond the AFRICA-ai-JAPAN project, hosted at JKUAT, and aims to contribute to industrial development and advanced research activities across Africa.

Accompanying Ms. Imoto were Mr. Hajime Iwama, the Chief Representative of JICA Kenya, and Mr. Hiroshi Mochizuki, the Deputy Director of JICA HQ Human Development Department. They were received by Vice Chancellor Prof. Victoria Wambui Ngumi and her Deputies, Prof. Bernard Ikua, Prof. Robert Kwanza, and Prof. Jackson Kwanza.

During their visit, the JICA team had the opportunity to interact with projects under the AFRICA-ai-JAPAN initiative. This project, initiated in June 2014, is a tripartite agreement between the Government of Japan, the African Union Commission (AUC), and the Government of Kenya, aimed at strengthening JKUAT’s research and innovation capacity.

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