Mustafa Prize (pbuh) Prize Celebrations in Tehran (Nov 30-Dec 04, 2017)
President ECOSF delivers a Lecture on "The Role of Science, Technology and Innovation in Economic Growth of Islamic Countries" at the Imam Sadiq University, Tehran Iran on December 02, 2017
As a part of Mustafa (pbuh) Prize programme on December 2, 2017, general and specialized conferences on the Science and Technology Exchange Program (STEP Symposiums) were inaugurated at Tehran University, Sharif University of Technology, Shahid Beheshti University, Imam Sadiq University, Tarbiat Modares University and Tehran University of Medical Sciences in morning and evening sections. The events brought together renowned scientists and scholars from the Islamic Countries to deliberate on various strategic and thematic areas in these universities accompanied by professors, international guests and university students.
Daylong symposium on; "Islamic Economics and Banking" was held at Imam Sadiq University, on Dec 02, 2017. President ECO Science Foundation Prof. Dr. Manzoor Hussain Soomro delivered a lecture on "The Role of Science, Technology and Innovation in Economic Growth of Islamic Countries". Prof. Soomro underscored that importance of Science, Technology and Innovation (STI) which is critical driving force for socio-economic development of any country or region. He further stressed that in order for Islamic World to gain competitive advantage against other countries, focused research in science and technology is a critical factor. He established that Low Investment in STI by the Islamic World is a major factor attributed to underutilization of vast potential that exists in the Islamic Countries, he added.
While focusing on The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, he mentioned that STI is fundamentally important to achieve sustainable development since STI serves as a crucial driver of rising prosperity and the national competitiveness in accordance to UN SDGs 2030.
Prof. Soormo presented statistics and indicators on current state of STI in the Islamic World. He elucidated that scientific investment and productivity across the Islamic Word (OIC countries), specifically the R&D expenditure and numbers of publications/patents, is lower than its relative to its population size. He further said that OIC has nearly a quarter of the world’s population but accounts for only 2.4% of research expenditure, 1.6% of patents and 6% of publications of the world. He stressed over bridging the ‘knowledge gap’ among the Islamic Countries.
He suggested that we can improve the status of STI in the Islamic World by Implementing STEM Education through Inquiry Based Science Education- IBSE. He emphasized over the need to establish innovation hubs in universities to nurture a stronger science- innovation mindset. In addition, students should be given the opportunities and exposed to problem-solving skills, critical thinking and innovation, science and technology curriculum. Whereas, the framework shall be developed to provide high-quality support services to entrepreneurs. He called for concrete measures to be taken by the government and private sector in the Islamic Region and allocating a specified percentage of GDP to: education with targeted allocation for basic, higher and vocational education, research and development and venture funds for start-ups.
At the end, the Question and Answer session was held. Subsequently, Professor Soomro was interviewed by the local media channels regarding the Mustafa (pbuh) Prize and status of STI in the Islamic world.