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APPLY: NCC seeks research proposals from tertiary institutions to drive telecom innovation

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NCC

The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), the Regulator of the telecommunications industry in Nigeria, is seeking amongst other things, telecommunications-based innovations and research from tertiary institutions in the country that are practical, locally realizable and have clear potential of developing the telecommunications industry.

Pursuant to this objective, the Commission invites proposals from academics in tertiary institutions that have feasible research ideas, capable of replacing or enhancing foreign technologies in the telecommunications in Nigeria.

It is envisaged that the initiative will help build capacity in the tertiary institutions and promote Nigeria’s contribution to the pool of technologies in use in the communications industry.

Areas of Research:

The Commission said that the research interest include;

  • Innovative clean energy Technology
  • 5G deployment in Nigeria
  • IoT Low Power Wide Area Network (WAN) Technology
  • Advanced method of Quality of Service (QoS)/Quality of Experience Management and test mechanism
  • Monitoring and localisation of drones

Requirements:

Interested researchers are required to submit their proposals which must:

  • Come from teaching Academics in Nigeria’s tertiary institutions; and
  • Have a one-page executive summary of the research proposal to include relevance of the research to the telecommunications industry, deliverables, novelty of concept, methodology, team experience, project timeline and detailed cost schedule.

Evaluation Criteria:

The criteria for the evaluation of the research submissions include the following:

  • The area must fall within the specified areas of research
  • Adherence of proposal to stated requirements above
  • Novelty of research proposal (comprehensive literature review to bring out clearly the novelty of the research).
  • Clear statement and explanation of the problem.
  • Proposed solution to the problem.
  • Proposed approach and methadolog7y
  • Each project including prototype development must be concluded within 2 years.
  • The project cost should not exceed a maximum of twelve million naira (N12,000,000.00) only. (the Commission reserves the right to review this maximum amount)

The Commission however, said that any academic with a yet to be completed research project with the Commission should not apply.

The proposal should also incude:

  • Total cost (including all costs) of the project must be clearly stated and broken down in details, for which there can be no variation.
  • Proof of concept (feasibility of idea with diagram, algorithm etc.)
  • Clear relevance to the telecommunications industry.
  • Evidence of local realization up to prototype.
  • Cost reasonableness (cost of actualizing the idea including hardware and software requirements but excluding purchase of vehicles, Furniture or Internet data, foreign trips and allowances).
  • Schedule of project organization
  • Coherent presentation/packaging of concept. Integration of research with education (capacity building of students via the implementation of the project in the institution).
  • Allowance for researchers should not exceed 20% of cost of actually doing the research.
  • Evidence of competence of team in executing the project (include past work and CVs of team members).

Submission of Proposal:

Submission will undergo preliminary assessment. The proposals that are adjudged promising and capable of developing the Telecommunications industry will be further evaluated by another level of assessors.

Sponsors/authors of research submissions may be invited for defence of their proposals before a decision is taken on whether the Commission will fund their project(s) or not. Those with existing research grand are not qualified to apply for this.

Interested researchers are invited to submit both SOFT and HARD copies and CDs of their research proposals on or before 8 September 2020 to the address below. Please note that any proposal submitted after the deadline will be rejected automatically.

Email address: [email protected]

The Executive Vice Chairman/CEO

Attention:

Director, Research and Development,

Nigerian Communications Commission

Plot 423, Aguiyi Ironsi Street,

Maitama, Abuja

Nigeria

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APPLY: CWG Academy to start new online session August 10

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CWG academy logo
CWG academy logo

CWG Academy, the training and capacity arm of CWG Plc will on August 10, 2020, start a new online session; the Head of Brand and Marketing Communications, Mr. Taiwo Lapite, announced in a statement.

The statement urged all Nigerians who are willing to pursue a career or learn a skill in Information and Communications Technology to apply and be part of the session, which is expected to last for six weeks.

“The new online session of the CWG Academy will take off by August 10, 2020. We urge all Nigerians willing to pursue a career in ICT to apply,” Taiwo emphasized in the statement.

CWG Academy had few weeks ago graduated its first set of online students in a ceremony conducted online owing to the COVID-19 pandemic ravaging the world that has forced many people and organizations to stay at home.

The CWG Academy is a brainchild of CWG Plc, Nigeria’s largest system integration company to bridge the skill gap in the country’s Information and Communications Technology sector.

Since its inception, the Academy has trained and developed over 1,500 Professionals, some of whom are working with Blue-Chip companies in Nigeria today. Some have also gone ahead to establish their own companies as entrepreneurs and are doing very well.

The Academy is one of the many ways CWG contributes her quota to Nation building by ways of helping to tackle the Nigerian unemployment quagmire.

The Academy deals with four core areas of the Information and Communications Technology ecosystem.

They are Advance Service management, Data Centre Infrastructure Services, IT Infrastructure & Cloud Platform and Software Training.

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ENTRY: Impact Amplifier calling for innovative solutions that promote online safety across Africa

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Online Safety

The exponential increase in internet, smartphone and mobile network usage over the past few years, which accelerated during the COVID-19 crisis, has created new opportunities for socio-economic development in Africa.

However, the rapid growth has also resulted in an increasing number of safety and security concerns varying in the different African regions from identity theft, bullying and harassment, sex trafficking, hate crimes, terrorist recruitment and promotion, to mis- or disinformation and financial scams.

To address these pressing issues, social innovation accelerator and advisory firm Impact Amplifier has designed the Africa Online Safety Fund, supported by Google.org, to finance innovative existing and new solutions to combat online security and safety threats.

Research done by the Institute for Strategic Dialogue (ISD), technical adviser to the Fund, highlighted specific areas of concern in various African countries.

Some key safety concerns in Nigeria include communal conflict, often caused by irresponsible and biased reporting online, which can further ethnic and/or religious divides and play a significant role in increasing polarisation offline, remaining a relatively unaddressed issue in the country.

Local, inter-communal violence poses a significant challenge to social cohesion in Nigeria, with conflict caused by dispute over land and water use often associated with inter-ethnic and religious tensions.

Nigeria ranked third on the 2019 Global Terrorism Index, with its terrorist threat stemming predominantly from domestic Islamist groups Boko Haram and its ISIS-endorsed offshoot, ISIS in West Africa Province (ISWAP), both of whom operate online and use social media for recruitment purposes and the distribution of harmful propaganda.

The ISD’s Deputy Director, Moustafa Ayad, commented: “As we turn increasingly to an online existence, digital threats (ranging from terrorist and extremist use of the internet to cyberbullying and child grooming, mis- and disinformation, online hate speech and various forms of cyber-fraud) become more acute. The Africa Online Safety Fund comes at a pivotal moment as these threats are exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic and we are excited to see the innovative, community-led and contextually relevant responses we know this call for applications will have.”

The Africa Online Safety Fund is making a $1 million commitment to address these online safety issues.

There are two funding categories.

  • Transformative, which provides grants of maximum $100,000, is aimed at projects that provide larger and scalable solutions across multiple geographies and/or potentially large numbers of beneficiaries.
  • The Catalytic category targets smaller, potentially local or culturally specific projects, with grants of a maximum $10,000.

According to the Impact Amplifier’s Director, Tanner Methvin, the Fund although not exclusively focused, will favour solutions that address women and children’s online safety specifically, as they are the most targeted communities in this regard.

Google.org Grants Lead EMEA, Liza Belozerova, commented: “Working with local communities to help people be safer online is a core focus of our work at Google.org.  Our work comes alongside the company’s long-standing commitment to strengthen privacy and security across the internet. The work of Google.org with local experts has taught us that the best answers often come from those closest to the problem. That’s why we are supporting Impact Amplifier’s Online Safety Fund with $1 million to support organisations and initiatives that seek to make the internet a safer place.”

The Fund will be open for applications from 17 July – 21 August this year.  The call is open to social enterprises, public sector or public benefit organisations (not individuals) throughout Africa, but will be prioritising Nigeria, South Africa, Kenya, Senegal, Ethiopia and the Côte d’Ivoire.

Methvin said that the primary criteria that will be used to select successful applications include innovation and replication; social impact; potential for success; management team; financial efficiency, and sustainability.

“The selection of finalists will be followed by a tight mentoring process to develop and implement the winning solutions in the regions and where applicable, across Africa in order to combat these socio, economic and political security and safety threats,” he added.

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APPLY: NITDA calls on application for Tech Innovation and entrepreneurship Support Scheme

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nitda

The National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA), is calling on eligible Nigerians to apply for its technology innovation and entrepreneurship scheme, a capacity building programme for Hub managers, young Nigerians and innovative startups to spur digital job creation and economic growth.

Concerned with the fact that Hubs and Startups in Nigeria suffer from issues of capacity deficiency such as ability to support start-ups, poor infrastructure and high cost of running their operations especially amidst COVID-19 Pandemic.

As such, there is the need to build support systems that will aid in reducing the barriers of entry for startups while increasing the capacity of hubs and startups to create new bankable products and services.

Also worried by this development and in line with President Muhammadu Buhari administration’s plan to create 100 million jobs in 10 years, NITDA initiated a scheme to provide opportunities for building the capacity of both Hub owners and start-ups, to ensure massive creation of technology entrepreneurs and jobs within the Industry.

In line with the Digital Economy policy, the programme is designed to ensure that Hub managers have the required skills set to support digital startups and build innovation ecosystems in their localities; build capacity of Hubs to support startups and build local innovation ecosystems; encourage innovation and entrepreneurship and increase technology and entrepreneurship skills among aspiring and existing entrepreneurs.

The objectives of the scheme are to build the capacity of Hubs to support startups and build local innovation ecosystems; Encourage Innovation and Entrepreneurship; Increase technology and entrepreneurship skills among aspiring and existing entrepreneurs; Increase digital skills capacity among Nigerian youths; Encourage local content solutions-based products/services; and increase the potential for job creation in the innovation and technology sector.

The programme under the scheme comprises of Hub Upskilling; Technical Capacity Building, Incubation and  Internship Programmes.

The hub managers that will be selected are to sign an agreement with NITDA to train upcoming hub managers within the region they come from, and equip with the skills to run a hub, support innovative startups and build an innovation ecosystem in their localities.

This is a programme designed to support ideas stage startups to move from Ideas to market. It will be implemented in partnership with the hubs that were part of the programme.

The participants will be assigned to hubs, where they will get access to infrastructure, such as internet connectivity, power supply and a rich network of other innovators. The participants will also be matched with mentors and guided by coaches as they build out their products and services.

At the end of the training period, participants will be required to choose if they would like to start a startup or if they would like to get a job.

Those interested in starting a startup will be moved into the Incubation program, while those that need a job will be moved to the job matching/internship program.

Those that opt for this track will be placed in 6-month internship opportunities with the startups in the incubation program or in other organizations to allow them to hone their skills and gain practical work experience in the process.

Interested and eligible candidates should please apply via https://scholarship.nitda.gov.ng/tiess

The portal is now open for application and will close at 12:00am on 24th of July, 2020.

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