Phase 1 Stake Holders Engagement Meeting, Cape Coast
Phase 2 Launch at the University of Health and Allied Sciences, Ho
The British Council Innovation for African Universities (IAU) programme launched activities for Phase 2 of the Ghana Bioenterprise Innovations Partnership (GBIP) project with the aim of developing a knowledge-exchange mentorship programme that will equip students and young bioscientists in Ghana with the know-how to translate biomedical research into commercial solutions.
The programme which was held at the University of Health and Allied Sciences and chaired by the Pro. Vice Chancellor of the University, Prof. Harry Tagbor saw key senior members and stakeholders of the university in attendance. Lead Principal Investigators (PIs) of the partnership took turns to share with the guest and audience some of the goals of the project and the potential impact of the project. Some senior members and faculty also shared some ideas and made suggestions on how the project team could achieve some of the outlined goals.
British Council Pays Courtesy Call on GBIP UHAS Team
Representatives of the British Council in the persons of Ms. Christy Bandoh and Ms. Akorfa Dawson paid a courtesy call on the UHAS GBIP team in Ho. During the visit, both parties discussed the progress of the project thus far, key milestones, the impact so far, pending activities, major challenges and how best the British Council could help the GBIP Project team overcome some of these challenges.
The representatives at their visit extended the courtesy call to the Vice Chancellor of the University, Prof. John Owusu Gyapong and the Pro. Vice Chancellor of the University Prof. Harry Tagbor.
They also took a tour to Tractilis BioLabs one of the startups in the Translator Accelerator Programme (TAP) to assess the progress and impact of the project and interact with some staff of the startup.
GBIP UHAS & UCC Partake in Lean Management Training at the University of St. Andrews, UK
Teams from Ghana visited the University of St. Andrews and successfully completed a trainer-of-trainers training in Lean Management Practices, delivered by the St. Andrews Consultancy.
University of St Andrews School of Medicine division of Infection and Global Health, led by Prof. Wilber Sabiiti took the participants through their translational work in TB diagnostics. The event covered processes that led to the development of the first ever diagnostic test, tuberculosis Molecular Bacterial Load Assay (TB-MBLA),a novel RNA based tool that measures live tuberculosis bacteria without having to grow them in the laboratory. Steps that are being taken to commercialize the product were also discussed.
The team together with Prof. Sabiiti also visited a biotech start-up, Anglia DNA (Norwich) where they learned first-hand, key processes that are required to successfully run biotech starts-up. Key among the discussed topics were quality control management, data management and result reporting & stock management to ensure reagents do not expire before use.
The team also attended a seminar delivered by Dr. Robert Bell where entrepreneurship gaps present in the logistic chain of food processing and how those can be translated into viable entrepreneurs were highlighted.
Training sessions were later organized in Ghana by the Ghana team in some Universities to pass the knowledge and skills to various stakeholders.
UK Lead Pays Courtesy Call on GBIP UHAS Team
UK Lead Principal Investigator, Prof. Wilber Sabiiti paid a courtesy call on the UHAS GBIP team. His visit was to assess first hand the progress of the GBIP project, the Translator Accelerator Programme (TAP) under the GBIP project and the impact of the project support on the two startups under the TAP, some of the challenges and possible ways of overcoming them.
Prof. Sabiiti also visited Tractilis BioLabs one of the startups under the TAP.
Hands-on Training in Innovation and Entrepreneurship at UCC
The University of Cape Coast, D- Hub hosted 23 participants, 8 (34.8%) females and 15(65.2%) selected based on their active participation and completion of the MOOCs training. The workshop was held from 8th August, 2022 through till 12th August, 2022 with facilitators from both the hub and government agencies.
Participants were trained on conceptualizing, planning & presenting entrepreneurial ideas, navigating documentation for bioscience business in Ghana and resource mobilization for start-ups. Participants were engaged in various activities in each daily session. Some of these activities included business prototype presentations, mock business idea pitches and an interaction with business owners in the community University of Cape Coast community on how they started their business, challenges faced and how some of these challenges were dealt with.
GBIP Intellectual Property Policy Workshop at UHAS
The GBIP team partnered with the University of Health and Allied Sciences Institute of Health Research (UHASIHR) to organize an IP Policy workshop for faculty and students in the bioscience field. Two facilitators from the Centre for Intellectual Property Rights Awareness Ghana (CIPRAG) were brought in by the UCC team to conduct this training workshop on Intellectual Property Policy for Biosciences.
The training was held at the Cedi Auditorium, UHAS on August 30, 2022, with a total of 39 participants, 8 (20.5%) females and 31(79.5%) males from various departments within the University personnel and student fraternity.
Facilitators trained participants in areas of the types of Intellectual property, the role of patents in promoting biomedical innovations, basic requirements for effective IP management, emerging global biomedical innovations, and IP rights and the role of a technology transfer officer for research and development in biomedical sciences. Participants were engaged in activities where case studies related to IP policy were discussed in groups and brief presentations made to address the related issues.
GBIP Final Stake-Holder Engagement & Exit Workshop
The Partnership organized a final stakeholder engagement workshop to mark the end of phase 2 of the project. Facilitators of the bio-entrepreneurship online training course (MOOCs) and some major key players in policy and bio-business were invited. At the workshop, Lead Principal Investigators of patnership gave a summary of events of the project. Invited guest and the project team further discussed the impact of the project and the way forward.
Participants of the bioentrepreneurship training were also invited with some giving the opportunity to share their experience and future expectations. There was also a presentation of a prototype from two training participants who teamed up to develop a simple, portable and cost effective biosafety cabinet after training and mentorship from the project.
British Council Open Day Exhibition & Seminar
The GPIP team attended the British Council open day exhibition and seminar in Accra. At the exhibition, the team showcased products (natural tea) produced by Medory Naturals. They also shared with patrons some of the GBIP training success stories where some training participants had moved from ideation stage into developing their first products and prototypes.
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