Roving Seminar on IP held in Rwanda

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Participants at the Roving Seminar at the University of Rwanda Participants at the Roving Seminar at the University of Rwanda

The African Regional Intellectual Property Organization (ARIPO) Roving Seminar on Intellectual Property (IP) for Academic & Institutions took place at the University of Rwanda (UR) from 2 to 3 November 2017 on the theme “Fostering Creativity & Innovation for Economic Growth and Development in Africa.”

The Seminar was organised by ARIPO in collaboration with the Rwanda Development Board and the University of Rwanda.

In his opening remarks, the Director General of ARIPO, Mr Fernando dos Santos highlighted that ARIPO took the initiative to organise roving seminars in Universities and research institutions after realising that a general awareness raising initiative was far from yielding immediate and concrete results and create the desired impact. He said that it was also observed that creators of Intellectual Property endeavours and custodians of knowledge reside in universities and research institutions.

The Guest of Honour, Dr Christine Gasinzirwa, Director General for Science, Technology and Research in the Ministry of Education, who represented the Minister of Education  said the Ministry of Education is grateful to ARIPO for its role in IP awareness in Africa. Dr Gasinzirwa called upon researchers at the University of Rwanda to “stop those who reap where they did not sow” by ensuring that the results of their research is protected by Intellectual Property and commercialised.

Various topics that were discussed at the seminar included the Intellectual Property Principles and Concepts, the Intellectual Property Legal Framework for Rwanda, the Role of ARIPO in Shaping the IP Landscape in Africa, the ARIPO Registration System, Using Trademarks and Industrial Designs as Tools for Branding and Value Addition to University Outputs, Commercialization of University Research Results, among others.   The Seminar was attended by more than 100 participants from the University of Rwanda and other research institutions such as the National Industrial Research and Development Agency (NIRDA), the Integrated Polytechnical Regional Centres (IPRC), the East African Science and Technology Commission (EASTCO), the Institute of Legal Practice and Development (ILPD).