CIPIT’s bi-annual moot competition aims to be innovative and to attract teams from across East Africa, and the 2018 edition was no exception. This year’s edition was particularly significant being the first moot in Sub-Saharan Africa to focus on Information Technology(IT) Law. The 2018 moot problem addressed the complexities of innovation, privacy and data protection in jurisdictions that operate in a legal vacuum with respect to data privacy. Therefore, participating students were able to interact with the topics of privacy and data protection and grapple with the ambiguities these cutting-edge issues pose in the legal field. This was also an excellent opportunity for CIPIT to highlight the trickle- down effect of innovations to the recurring concerns of data protection, and to nurture the interest of the young generation in IT law and policy.Continue reading
#KOT, #SomeonetellCNN, #Someonetelltheworld, AkiraChix, Bitange Ndemo, Digital Kenya, Erik Hersman, iHub, innovation, Judith Owigar, Kenya's tech scene, KINGS of African digital economy, Nairobi, Palgrave studies of entrepreneurship in Africa series, Silicon Savannah, Tech entrepreneurship, Tech innovation, tech scene, Technology hubs, Techpreneur, Tim Weiss
The editors of Digital Kenya: An Entrepreneurial Revolution in the Making describe it as a ‘book of arguments and ideas’ and this blogger agrees with this analysis. Published in 2017 and originally published in 2016, a copy of the e-book is freely available under open access. The focus of the book is Kenya’s entrepreneurial revolution in the tech sector. Digital Kenya is authored and edited in a very interesting way; 14 key figures in the Kenya’s tech startup scene were interviewed (including Jay Larson, co-founder of the Tunapanda Institute discussed in a post here) and they provide a unique insight into the inner workings of the Kenyan tech scene and what it takes to be a digital entrepreneur, in addition the book was written by professors, contributors and scholars and edited by Bitange Ndemo and Tim Weiss.
Africa, Bruce Berman, Entrepreneur, intellectual property rights, Knowledge and skills sharing, Non-disclosure Agreements, Open AIR, Open Innovation, Protecting innovative ideas, Start-ups, Tech innovation, Technology hubs, Trade Secrets
The world today is flooded with good ideas. Some come from large, mature, well-organized companies. Some come from basement startups. Many are innovative. Some are brilliant. Most die a lonely death, never seeing the light of commercial success. Excerpt from Bruce Berman’s ‘From Ideas to Assets: Investing wisely in intellectual property.
A lot has been said about intellectual property (IP) and innovation in Africa. As pointed out in a previous post here, some argue that failure of tech innovators to protect IP would serve as an investment disincentive thereby affecting economic development. On the other hand, the Open AIR research network has with numerous examples, successfully put it out there that innovation in Africa is thriving in the absence of IP. Perhaps another perspective here would be to examine whether this could be true for tech innovation happening in an open environment.
For the purposes of this post, innovation is the process of bringing valuable new products to market- from idea/concept formulation stage to the successful launching of a new or improved product. In the African tech scene, the process involves a lot of idea sharing, partnering in concept development, pitching competitions, and knowledge and skills sharing. And as quoted above, Bruce Berman points out the reality that while a lot of new ideas are born, most die without ever seeing the light of commercial success. In this post, I consider whether the non-use of IP mechanisms to protect ideas in the open tech environment could be a reason why most ideas die without reaping full benefits, if any. The biggest bashers to this proposition would say outright that intellectual property rights do not protect ideas. Well, I invite you to think again.