Online Event Access to Benefit Sharing of Biodiversity (ABSbio) Project Launch Uganda 2020

We recommend you the following online event on behalf of our partners in Uganda:

Access to Benefit Sharing of Biodiversity (ABSbio) Project Launch Uganda 2020

Makerere University, Uganda together with its partner universities Leipzig University, Germany and IRGIB Africa University, Benin invite you to take part in the virtual ABSbio Project Launch on Monday 26 October 2020 from 1:00 pm EAT Time (note: 11:00 am CET). The project launch will be held online.

Please follow the link below to register:

https://zoom.us/meeting/register/tJArcO2pqDkjHtbpkBWgJzk6T5PfYPxEgSnq

Are you interested in a bio-based innovative idea that promotes sustainable use of biodiversity? Does your innovative idea have potential to positively contribute to the triple bottom line (People, planet & profit)? Do you have a solution to current biodiversity challenges? This launch will give you information on how to participate in the bio-based business idea competition.

The aim of the launch is to to present the ABSbio project and launch the Idea Competition 2020 in front of a diverse, motivated audience, informing the interested people about the implementation of the idea competition

AGEA Online Conference 13.10. 2020 Public Day and Idea Competition Finale now on YouTube

Since 2017 the African German Entrepreneurship Academy (AGEA) project has been jointly implemented by the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST) in Ghana, INES Ruhengeri in Rwanda and Leipzig University in Germany. KNUST and INES Ruhengeri have served as the hubs for Higher Educational Institute (HEI) networks and the private sector in both countries.

As part of the final project year activities, an international online conference took place on 13 October 2020. The virtual public event brought together experts, HEIs, students and business partners within the AGEA network in Ghana, Rwanda and Germany.

The main highlight of the conference was the final selection of the TOP 3 Ideas of the AGEA Idea Competition 2020. This selection was done through an online participant voting process.

The live stream was watched by over 220 viewers from at least 13 countries in Africa and from Germany as we could see in the live chat. Now the video can be played on demand in the SEPT International YouTube Channel https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pOhAO9xLOGA&feature=youtu.be

Graduation Ceremony of SEPT MBA Program on 9 October 2020

Despite the Covid-19 pandemic and a limited operation of the university this year´s graduates of the international SEPT Master program will receive their certificates in a ceremony held in the university´s festival hall Paulinum at Augustusplatz.  In this cohort 2018 – 2020 there are 30 graduates from 22 countries of Africa, Asia, Europe and Latin America who finish their MBA in Small and Medium-Sized Enterprise Development.  Additionally 25 students from Vietnam could successfully complete their studies within the framework of a joint master program with the Hanoi University of Science and Technology and the Vietnamese German University of Ho Chi Minh City.

When it comes to their master´s thesis, the students of the MBA program in Leipzig had dealt with business promotion projects in their home countries as well as here in the Leipzig area. The different themes of the master´s thesis reveal that all SEPT graduates will easily be reintegrated in the job market in their home countries or in Germany to realize their projects and to promote the establishment of small and medium-sized enterprises worldwide.

For the upcoming cohorts the signs are good, says Prof. Dornberger, head of the master program: “We are very pleased that DAAD will continuously support the SEPT MBA program with 8 scholarships per cohort between 2022 and 2028. This corresponds to 56 full time scholarships for this period of time plus about 210,000 € for the supervision service of the master program.”

Successful premiere of Digital Summer School

Covid-19 poses new challenges for teaching at universities. For this year’s Summer School “Project Management for Knowledge Transfer” of the International SEPT Program at the University of Leipzig, the options were “drop out” or “go digital”.

The team, led by Prof. Dr. Utz Dornberger, quickly designed a digital two-week course from August 31 to September 11 and received financial support from the DAAD and BMZ.

New, innovative approaches and instruments of connection and communication were used, which SEPT would probably not have tested otherwise. The aim was not only to transfer knowledge, but also to create a group identity. And that is a challenge for all people, who work, study or attend school individually from home due to Covid-19.

The joint leisure activities in German culture, which is foreign to the participants from Africa and Asia, took place virtually during the two weeks, with great success and lots of fun. The program included cooking together under the guidance of a professional cook via Zoom video conference, a visit to a virtual escape room and interactive improvisational theatre via Zoom.

For the SEPT team it was an exciting experiment and an enriching experience for all involved. Through several surveys during the Summer School, a growing feeling of belonging to a group was proven. Given the enormous distances between all participants, this is a great success. If one were to connect all the places where the Summer School participants are staying, one would cover around 39,000 kilometers – from the Philippines and Cambodia to Mauritius, Tanzania, Kenya, Zimbabwe, South Africa, Namibia, Malawi, Nigeria, Senegal, Ghana, Benin, Burkina Faso to Leipzig.

Where the team had previously asked itself anxious questions about the smooth running of the daily teaching operations, such as: will the internet connection be stable for all participants and is everyone always logged-in on time despite time zone differences? Afterwards the conclusion can be drawn that everything worked very well. The communication between the daily teaching and training units took place via a Messenger App developed especially for the Summer School, where questions were answered in real time and information, links and working materials could be exchanged as files.

Of the 21 innovative project ideas, three stood out in particular and were awarded prizes in a competition on the last day of the Summer School. Mechanical engineer Lucy Kariuki from Nairobi, Kenya, wants to use 3D printers to produce orthopedic prostheses that are custom-made for the customer/patient. In doing so, she is serving an urgent local need and delivering an excellent, unprecedented product to the market.

Cédric Agbessi from Benin is working on the production of compostable packaging for meals made of organic material from agricultural waste. Blessing Sibanda, a computer scientist from Zimbabwe, is planning to develop an app for small farmers that will enable them to diagnose plant diseases and vermin by taking photographs with a smartphone. This application is based on artificial intelligence.

The second round of the Digital Summer School is scheduled for March 2021. Hopefully all participants from September 2020 and March 2021 will be able to complete the second part of their program in Leipzig in September 2021.

Digital Summer School started

Due to the challenge posed by the Corona-virus, this year´s edition of our SEPT International Summer School is a digital one. All 21 participants attend online from where they are residing right now. These are 12 countries in total, 2 of them in Asia and 10 in Africa. Dealing with different time zones, meeting up every morning in the Live Video Meetings works out fine so far. We are now right in the middle of week 1 and curious of the results at the end of next week. Our participants, most of them with an academic background in natural sciences, all have super interesting project ideas in the fields of Innovation and Entrepreneurship.

Have a look at the map which staff and participants created with the digital whiteboard tool MURAL to see where our Summer Schoolers are located!

Huge participation in our ACCESS Kick-off event

We are grateful for the huge participation in our ACCESS Kick-off event. The Public Day was followed by more than 140 people simultaneously all over the world, in total we had more than 700 jumped in at one point of the broadcast.

The two following days envisaged practical and administrative workshops with concerns customized just for the ACCESS team. During the first day, the entire team was introduced and got the chance to become better acquainted, through presentations not only about the different universities and their specific teams, but also about each pillar/work groups. Both of which compose the framework of the project. The ACCESS team finalized their vision, the challenges and working methods for this intercultural setting, where most of the work is done online.

The second workshop day was meant to give an understanding of the project architecture related to funding and reporting processes.

We are happy for all the positive responses during and after our Kick-off Event. Thank you all for your active contribution. For further information just visit our website www.access-centre.org.