iHub By Hilda Moraa / January 27, 2012
ICT Hubs: Assessing the Impact of African ICT Hubs to the Entrepreneurs
Over the past few months, iHub research has been developing a framework around their in-house ICT Hubs project to initiate a research series that will dis-aggregate the unique factors that make up ICT hubs/labs model in Africa (Afrilabs). The series will also have a special focus on the role of ICT hubs in fostering innovative entrepreneurship.
Opportunities are opening up for young people with high tech skills such as software engineering, design, and development. Many of these skills are being nurtured in the Information Communication (ICT) hubs, where technology-oriented individuals gather and collaborate. Unfortunately, little inquiry has been done to understand the various factors which make up an ICT hub model and how such factors are useful to the entrepreneurs in the space. Most important, there has been little assessment of how African hubs/labs have been of significance to the different categories of members in the space. These categories of members will vary in the different Hubs used in this study.
The study aims to understand the following questions:
1. What impact does the hub have on the individual’s development in the different membership categories?
2. What impact does the hub have on the individual’s start-up?
3. What is the significance of the hub community to the individual start-up?
4. What are the most important factors which makes the members continue to use the space?
The main objective of the project is to:
1) Study what factors make up the ICT Hubs model;
2) Understand the entrepreneurs/start-ups in the ICT Hubs through a representative sample size representing the different membership tiers;
3) Assess the impact of the Hub based on the different memberships categories.
iHub Research will use mixed-methods to assess the impact of hubs on members. Qualitative and quantitative methods will be used including: direct observation, focus-group discussions, and semi-structured interviews in 15 Hubs/Labs around Africa.Based on the data collected through focus group discussions, workshop findings, and e-survey results, a visual report will be produced that illustrates the impact of the hubs on the members. In the following months, iHub Research will regularly report on this project’s progress project through this blog. We always welcome your comments and support!
philip sheunda at 13:11:52PM Wednesday, February 1, 2012
A cool idea that will make hub-technology reach young innovative entrepreneurs!!!!!!!!!!!Reply
Collins Ondeng at 09:41:29AM Friday, February 3, 2012
A good idea…infact these days technology has to be combined with entrepreneurship to increase economical sustainability……Reply
Nikolai at 08:49:28AM Monday, February 20, 2012
Great. Looking forward to it. Is there a mailing list for the reports separately?Reply
Thomas Kaberi at 10:30:08AM Monday, February 20, 2012
Documentiing factual information on the hows n why if ilabs will be usefull for orgs n govts interested in replication. Good initiative n hope to learn a few things….. allReply
Handerson at 17:05:03PM Tuesday, February 21, 2012
I believe there is a positive impact of the ICT Hubs to the entrepreneurs largely as a result of the peer networks and review, however, it may be useful to expand the community in the Hubs beyond Techies and developers to enable the entrepreneurs benefit from a Multidisciplinary Network. A pivotal component, if these Hubs are to help them make products for the market.Reply
Hilda Moraa at 10:17:14AM Thursday, February 23, 2012
Hi Handerson. Thanks for your feedback. Our initial focus is on ICT Hubs/Labs which is not only techprenuers sitting in the space but other types of entrepreneurs. In addition other Hubs/Labs we will be looking at are more of social Hubs and how the different types of Hubs/Labs can learn lessons from each other.Reply
Hilda Moraa at 10:18:39AM Thursday, February 23, 2012
hi Thomas, sure we are looking into that as our long-term objective for this study. Thanks for your positive feedback, and there is a lot to learn from it.Reply
Hilda Moraa at 10:19:44AM Thursday, February 23, 2012
Hi Nikolai, there is, I will include your name and keep you updated when we release the report.Reply
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