A team of advanced students of the School of Politics, Policy and Governance (SPPG) have presented the first volume of a White Paper evaluating potential outcomes of implementing the Nigeria Startup Bill, which was recently passed by the National Assembly.
The White Paper focused on impacts in three key areas: Finance and Investment; Education, Jobs and Social Cohesion; and Governance and Regulation.
In all three areas, the students demonstrated quantifiable gains that could be achieved by the Nigeria Startup Bill once enacted, subject to good implementation.
“The manner of implementation of this Bill will be critical to achieving desirable outcomes” said the team lead, Rex Rim-Rukeh.
He went on to explain that based on the research, conducted locally and around other jurisdictions that have deployed pro-startup policies, the team uncovered insights into how such laws and policies could work. “Virtually every single time, these required a deep level of mutual respect and collaboration between a variety of stakeholders who were focused on key results and growth. By presenting these three thematic areas, our intention is to ensure that implementers of the Bill, once passed, have the right objectives and metrics for keeping track in order to achieve impact. In volume two of the white paper, we shall present two more thematic areas that would also be of high importance”.
The team revealed that it will continue to support by making recommendations whenever necessary, and use data to track progress over the long-term; to help the Startup Ecosystem with accountabilities and progress in implementation.
“So far, from the data we have evaluated around innovation on the continent, including Nigeria, we do see that there are so many critical gaps, such as in funding, skills, R&D, entrepreneur confidence, and that no single entity can change a country’s fortunes by itself. Furthermore, the pace of domesticating this Act at the state level will be critical to achieving geographic competencies and comparative advantages across various verticals”.
The School of Politics, Policy and Governance’s Certificate in Public Leadership and Policy (CPLP) course encompasses a curriculum aimed at providing a new generation of leaders in Nigeria with the requisite skills identified through research to be deficient in our current political landscape: Political Science, Ethics, Leadership, Economics, Sector Policies, Institution Building, and Quantitative Analysis.
As part of the course, SPPG students embark on a Capstone Project, working in themed groups.
This team focused on Technology and Sustainability, as they examined the process followed by the Nigeria Startup Bill, one of many being introduced in countries across Africa, with a view to constructively evaluate its content, path to passage, and ultimately its implementation.
The team is motivated by the fact that, for the first time, we have more unicorn startups and innovations in developing economies than in developed climes.
While most of that growth is fueled by India and China, the questions of Nigeria’s place in this dynamic and how Nigeria can fully harness her technological potential must be carefully and strategically addressed by a broad base of interest groups.
The mistakes that prevented the full success of impact-focused Acts passed in many countries need to be studied to avoid repeating similar mistakes wherever possible. The Nigerian Startup Bill is a good candidate for this form of shadowing.
Other members of the team include Munir Bello, Samuel Adesoga, Samuel Obeghe, Dupe Lydia Abiona, Ezekiel Aina, Ose Eromosele, Hyacinth Aneke and Musa Ali Baba.
In addition to the Second Volume of its White Paper, they have authored a guide to the Act as it affects target stakeholders and shall be launching a blog and other activities in the coming days to engage the public, curate research works, progress reports, data and news around the Nigerian Startup Act and its contemporaries across Africa. You can view the Volume 1 report here.