Gender Integration workshop held in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, from 10 – 12 October 2018.

The workshop entitled “Gender Integration and Innovation”: working with communities to build a more inclusive future’ has held at the Capital Hotel, Addis Ababa Ethiopia from 10 – 12 October 2018.The Workshop was organized by the BioInnovate Africa Programme, in partnership with Penn State University (USA) and Ethiopian Agricultural Transformation Agency.

Opening Speech was made by Dr. Shumete Gizaw, the State Minister of Innovation and Technology, Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia. In his speech, mentioned, the Ministry of Science and Technology is the central government arm that is responsible for the advancement of science and technology in Ethiopia, and for promoting research and innovation for socio-economic development of the country and the region. He reminded that the Ministry and its reporting institutions and agencies, has been participating in the BioInnovate Africa Programme from as far back as 1999. He then reminded the Ministry will, through the Ethiopia Biotechnology Institute (EBTi), continue to be a focal point for BioInnovate Africa in Ethiopia.

His excellence, also said, our activities in technology development should be gender responsive i.e. the work we do, the technologies we develop and products we make, should consider the needs, and social roles of both men and women. Gender integration enables our communities to find value in and suitably and effectively adopt new technologies for their wellbeing.

In his address, he again stressed that both gender and innovation are highly collaborative processes that requires us to have strong engagements with our communities. We, therefore, must work together in partnership to create a framework within our work or institutions that promote gender integration.

Closing Remark was made by Dr. Kassahun Tesfaye, Director General for Ethiopian Biotechnology Institute. He highlights that the objective of this three-day Gender Integration Workshop is aims to equip African professionals with knowledge and skills, on how to integrate gender issues in biophysical science and innovation projects, while respecting and appreciating the cultural norms of the different stakeholders.

Dr.Kassahun, in his closing statements also mentioning that innovation and integrating gender agenda in various sectors recognized; as the engine for sustainable economic and social development, yet its tangible impact in our region is at its infant stage.   He further added that the value of such events on Gender integration and innovation and Women fellowship program has a paramount importance in promoting and providing platform for multi-stakeholder dialogue at different levels as well as help to integrate gender in the value chain; all the way from research work, technology development, value addition via innovation; and scaling up and commercialization.

He also congratulates the PI of the first round and 2nd round grant winners as well as the first cohort of BioInnovate Africa Women Fellows. It’s noticed that first cohort of 12 Fellows selected from Burundi, Ethiopia, Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda. From Ethiopian Biotechnology Institute (EBTi), Dr. Fantahun W/Senbet, Director of Industrial Biotechnology is among the grant winner of the 2nd round call and his team will work on the project entitled “Small-scale community biorefining of sorghum for food, sugar, and biomaterials in rain fed areas of Eastern Africa”,With collaborators from Uganda and Kenya. Furthermore, two young female researchers from EBTi, Ms. Genet Tsegaye and Mahider Getachew were also selected from Ethiopia as BioInnovate Africa Women Fellows along with 10 others from the region to participate in four months research attachment in one of the ongoing innovation grant.  

Finally Dr Kassahun, conclude by thanking everyone for bringing their expertise and experience around the table and engaging in such fruitful, constructive and open exchanges throughout the three days of this Gender Integration Workshop and all of  supporters for making the  workshop a success.



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