Smart specialisation strategies in sub-Saharan Africa: Opportunities, challenges and initial mapping for Côte d’Ivoire

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Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY)
journal article
African Journal of Science, Technology, Innovation and Development
Dosso, M.
Kleibrink, A.
Matusiak, M.

This paper calls for a better integration of place-based, evidence-based and inclusive dimensions in the implementation of the Science, Technology and Innovation (STI) plans and industrial policies in sub-Saharan Africa. To this end, the analysis contrasts with and takes inspiration from the recent and ongoing international experiences in the elaboration of Innovation Strategies for Smart Specialisation (S3). Then a preliminary mapping of the economic, scientific and innovative potentials for Côte d’Ivoire (West Africa) is achieved in line with the smart specialisation approach to evidence collection for innovation policy. The conceptual and mapping exercise can help innovation practitioners and stakeholders to identify important gaps of evidence needed to inform place-based or territorial development policies. The integration of smart specialisation principles into STI and industrial policymaking can indeed open several opportunities to identify and nurture innovative activities and novel industries. Pragmatic recommendations are drawn from these perspectives for more effective innovation-based local development strategies in Côte d’Ivoire and the region.

Publication year: 
Smart Specialisation Strategies
science technology innovation (STI) policies
industrial transformation
Sub-Saharan Africa
Côte d’Ivoire