Message from the Vice-Chancellor

vcResearch and Innovation are two fundamental concepts that cannot be delinked. Their intertwining role has motivated the University to merge the two and organise the Research and Innovation Week altogether. Actually, there is a dual role played by the two; in that, research breeds innovation and vice-versa. World experiences and evidence dictate that high income economies are those which innovate most. According to the Global Innovation Index (GII) 2023, the first 35 countries ranked out of 132, are high income economies with the exception of one, China (ranked 12th globally and 1st among Upper Middle Income Economies). Mauritius is in fact ranked 57th globally and 1st in sub-Saharan Africa.

Researchers who are at the forefront of innovation expect to commercialise their innovative products and ideas through patents and trading of intellectual property rights.

In this trinity of innovation, patenting, and commercialization, academia stands as a linchpin. As educators, researchers, and facilitators of knowledge transfer, our role extends beyond the lecture halls and laboratories. We are stewards of intellectual curiosity and champions of interdisciplinary collaboration. It is our responsibility not only to generate knowledge but also to cultivate an environment that nurtures the transformation of that knowledge into tangible societal benefits. As we embark on this journey of exploration and application, let us remember that the impact of academia is not measured solely by the number of publications or patents but by the tangible improvements we bring to the world. The UoM aims at fostering an ecosystem that encourages innovation, protects intellectual property, and facilitates the seamless transition from research to real-world solutions.

In the pursuit of knowledge, let us be architects of change, weaving together the threads of innovation, patenting, and commercialization to build a future that is not only academically enriching but also socially transformative.

At the heart of every academic institution lies the spirit of innovation. It is within these hallowed halls that ideas are born, theories are tested, and breakthroughs are made. Innovation, in its essence, is the cornerstone of academia - a force that propels us forward in our quest for understanding and improvement. It is the tireless pursuit of knowledge that drives us to explore uncharted territories, unravel the mysteries of the universe, and devise solutions to the challenges that confront humanity.

In the world of academia, where ground breaking research is conducted regularly, the role of patents cannot be overstated. Patents not only protect the intellectual property of our researchers but also serve as beacons of innovation, signalling to the world that within our academic institutions, transformative ideas are taking shape. By securing patents, we ensure that the fruits of our intellectual labour are shielded from misuse, allowing us to share knowledge freely while safeguarding the rights of those who contribute to the ever-expanding tapestry of human understanding.

Yet, the journey of research does not end with the publication of scientific papers or the issuance of patents. The true impact of our work is realized through its commercialization. It is the translation of academic findings into tangible products, services, or applications that can address real-world challenges and improve the lives of people globally.

The Innovation days will showcase what UoM academics and students are capable of producing based on earlier research carried out. The demonstration will be through oral, visual and descriptive presentations. An important aspect of the innovation segment is the close collaboration between our researchers (academics and students) working closely with the industry and the public sector including community outreach projects.

I wish all presenters and participants fruitful deliberations and interaction.