Pakistani varsities are intended to actively partake in promoting creative innovations if the governments and industries come forward. They would be also to provide reliable and durable solutions being faced by the manufacturers, production units, and industries of Pakistan.

“We all know that our youth do not lack creativity and have the ability to adapt to innovation, but the fact is that these young people have never been provided with the required facilities and that is why they cannot showcase their talents at the national and international level”.

These views were expressed by the Vice Chancellor University of Karachi Professor Dr Khalid Mahmood Iraqi on Thursday. He was addressing the closing ceremony of the NIB 2021 (City Level Competition) organized by the KU Office of Research Innovation and Commercialization at the Professor Dr Salimuzzaman Siddiqui Auditorium, International Center for Chemical and Biological Sciences, University of Karachi.

He mentioned that the universities are the center of knowledge and provide platforms to students to enhance their skills by initiatives like NIB. He informed the audience that the University of Karachi has its own Karachi University Business Incubation Centre which is providing free-of-cost facilities to students so that they could build their start-up.

The audience was informed that more than 400 creative project proposals and ideas were received on an individual and collective basis for the said competition, out of which the judges have selected the five best project holders in six different categories for the next stage. Individuals who were voted as the best innovator by the judges also received cheques and merit certificates during the ceremony.

On this occasion, a video message of the President of Pakistan Dr Arif Alvi was also shown on the screen in which he said that the National Ideas Bank is an excellent platform for the youngsters and believes that students would avail this opportunity and help in growing the economy of the country.

He observed that in today’s world we would need innovative and creative ideas to compete with others. President Pakistan Dr Arif Alvi shared that most parts of the world are now relying on artificial intelligence. He said that AI helps to move the world towards development.

He congratulated the winners of the city-level competition and hoped that they would also perform well in the next round.

Meanwhile, the Chief Executive Officer Idea gist Hassan Syed said that the promotion of innovation-based technology is essential for building a knowledge-based economy. Emerging technologies will create a US$50 trillion economy in the world in near future.

He shared that Pakistan has a three percent population of the world and could have a three percent share out of this US$50 trillion economy which would be around US$1.5 trillion and this is five times higher than our current GDP.

Hassan Syed acknowledged that President Pakistan, the federal information technology and telecommunication minister supported the NIB and also appreciated the support of overseas Pakistanis who are participating with the NIB in promoting and grooming the youngsters.

Meanwhile, the Chancellor of Sir Syed University of Engineering and Technology Jawed Anwar said that the establishment of the National Idea Bank is an important step towards the promotion of new and innovative thinking. He hoped that NIB, academia, government, and industry will help in establishing a society where young people would come forward and solve the problems being faced by the country and build a strong economy.

The Vice Chancellor SSUET Professor Dr Valiuddin said that companies and industrialists have already joined the NIB which is a positive sign and hoped this collaboration would lead to improving the country’s economy.

The Vice President Federation of Pakistan Chambers of Commerce and Industry Hanif Lakhani while appreciating the establishment of the NIB said that the industries would like to be benefitted from the innovative ideas and projects coming out from the NIB.

The Director ORIC SSUET Dr Rabia Inam shed light on the purpose and objectives of establishing the NIB and what is expected from this platform. Dr Farha Essa from Dr Essa Laboratory and Diagnostic Centre also spoke on this occasion while the KU Director ORIC Professor Dr Aliya Rehman in her welcome address briefed the audience about the selection process of entries received for the competition and Focal Person for NIB from the University of Karachi Dr Asma Tabassum, who is the manager research and development at the KU ORIC, moderated the event

Author

Arshad Yousafzai is a Karachi-based journalist covering Education and Human Rights. He can be reached on Twitter @Arshadyousafzay

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