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KNUST to address youth unemployment through technology entrepreneurship

The Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST) is seeking to tackle youth unemployment in Ghana and Africa through extensive research on Technology entrepreneurship, this is according to the Dean of the KNUST School of Business, Professor Nathaniel Boso.

The Ghana Statistical Service (GSS) in its labour statistics report released on 1 September 2022, indicated that about 1.8 million persons in Ghana from 15 to 24 years are not in education, employment or in any form of training. The 1.8 million persons from 15 to 24 years represent 28.8% of the youth population.

Professor Boso who was speaking at the launch of the O.R. Tambo Africa Research and Technology Initiative at the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology said the high rate of youth unemployment in the country and the continent at large could cause insecurity in future hence the resolve to tackle it.

Professor Boso is the O.R Tambo KNUST chair in Ghana tackling entrepreneurship. According to him, the research area to reduce the menace of unemployment, will focus on how high-growth technology-driven entrepreneurial businesses owned and managed by young people will aid in the reduction of youth unemployment in the country.

“This chair wants to find empirical evidence to establish to academics around the world, to practitioners and policymakers that when we allow the African society to be driven by entrepreneurship, we can be on the way to creating new jobs, not any kind of job but sustainable jobs, jobs that pay well, and if we are able to create these jobs, our argument is that unemployment will subsequently come down.”

He also added that the quest to address the menace stems from the fact that the challenges in Africa with regard to youth unemployability require African context specific measures which are ‘unique to Africa’
“Whether we like it or not the kind of competence we need to run successful technology enterprises in Africa is unique to Africa, so we want to create an African context-specific framework that any African policymaker can to begin to educate African Children about the skill set that they need to become successful entrepreneurs and subsequently to be able to create jobs.”

O.R. Tambo Africa Research Chairs Initiative (ORTARChI) is an initiative of South Africa’s National Research Foundation (NRF) and the Department of Science and Innovation (DSI) in partnership with the Oliver and Adelaide Tambo Foundation (OATF); Canada’s International Development Research Centre (IDRC) and seven councils of the Science Granting Councils Initiative in Sub-Saharan Africa (SGCI).

Prof Nathaniel Boso of the KNUST School of Business of the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, Kumasi, was named one of the Chairs in ten African Universities to host the O.R. Tambo Africa Research Chairs Initiative (ORTARChI).

The award of the Chair to KNUST will enable the School of Business to, for the next five years, conduct relevant research and support high-end skills development under thematic areas in the Humanities and Social Sciences, focusing attention on technology, entrepreneurship and youth employability.

The KNUST Chair comes with an award of US$1,075,000 for a period of five years.

Irene Pomaa Kumi

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