Strategic Action Plan for Innovation-Driven Development in Sri Lanka: A Blueprint for the Future

Friday, November 18, 2022

Stan Kowalski

Reposted with permission of Innovation Eye.

“The world is in turmoil. This should be obvious to anyone who follows the news. A combination of global challenges is converging in this century — armed conflict, failed states, climate change, pandemics, and mass migrations. Among the principal drivers of these challenges is a chronic failure of developing countries to diversify their economies from commodities, tourism,    and    low-end manufacturing to science, technology, and innovation; they are essentially stuck in a post- colonial quagmire. Sri Lanka is now a case study, having become a fragile state teetering on failed state status; a catastrophic and precipitous economic implosion has occurred, with political and social reverberations intensifying daily.” says Prof. Stan Kowalski from Franklin Pierce School of Law, the University of New Hampshire.

He along with his group of six students will work together to research the situation in Sri Lanka to formulate a “StrategicAction Plan for Innovation- Driven Development in Sri Lanka: A Blueprint for the Future” under their university programme; “International Technology Transfer Institute Clinic (ITTI)”.

The  National Innovation Agency will be the country’s focal point for this study, whilst the Asia & Pacific Division of WorldIntellectual Property Organization will be the facilitator for this project.

According to Prof. Stanley country has wasted many years without identifying the importance of serious investment in strategic capacity building in science, technology, and innovation. Therefore, the proposed strategic action plan for innovation will address this reality and navigate and accelerate the development in the country. The key features of thisplan will be intellectual property law, practice and management, and best practices in technology transfer as applicable to Sri Lanka’s current stage of development. Prof. Stanley also stated that “intangible intellectual assets make up the bulk of value in international trade and transactions, exceeding that of tangible goods, services, and commodities.

It is but a short leap to understand that this requires highly sophisticated skill in communicating across cultures, whether it pertains to negotiations, licensing, R&D collaborations, or technology transfer. In order to recover (and survive in this century), Sri Lanka urgently needs to build the human capital and institutional infrastructure to connect to this globalized innovation marketplace.”

The National Innovation Agency hopes that the outcome of this study will open up the eyes of country’s decision and policy makers to identify, access, absorb, adapt, and assemble Technological components which then become critical innovations in health, agriculture, energy and production. This will generate prosperity, wellbeing, and hope for a brighter future.