Dr. Ezezika is an Assistant Professor, Teaching stream at the University of Toronto and the founder of the African centre for Innovation and Leadership Development (ACILD). Over the past 15 years, Dr. Ezezika has worked and consulted for diverse organizations such as the United Nations Development Program, Canada’s International Development Research Centre, the Ministry of Science and Technology, Nigeria, the Sandra Rotman Centre, Yale’s Department of Molecular, Cellular and Developmental Biology, and Grand Challenges Canada. His research interests lie at the nexus of trust-building, biotechnology development, food security, and global health innovation. In 2008, he was appointed as a Senior Research Fellow at the Sandra Rotman Centre, Toronto, where he developed a trust-building model for a $48 million international food security program, working in Burkina Faso, Egypt, Kenya, Mozambique, Nigeria, Uganda, South Africa and Tanzania. He went on to establish the African Centre for Innovation & Leadership Development (ACILD) in 2013, a nonprofit think tank focused on building leadership and innovation capacity in Africa. Through ACILD, he led the creation of a number of health innovations, including the NutridoTM system, a gamification platform for improving adolescent nutrition. Prior to joining the faculty at the University of Toronto, he was a Grand Challenges Fellow at the United Nations Every Woman Every Child Innovation Marketplace, where he worked with a variety of global health stakeholders, including the Gates Foundation and USAID, to take high-impact innovations from the bench to the bedside and improve the health of women, children and adolescents in low- and middle-income countries. Dr. Ezezika has a PhD in Microbiology from the University of Georgia and a Master’s degree in Environmental Management from Yale University.
In Nigeria, science and technology has been discovered to be the “lifeline” for the development of all other sectors and the “key driver” for the national and socio-economic development. The catastrophic effect of the fall in price of crude oil on Nigeria’s economy has led the Federal Government to explore other ways of boosting the country’s economy. This accounts for the interest in developing the sector of science and technology to impel the development in other sectors of the economy.
The impact of science and technology on the economic growth and diversification of Nigeria’s economy in the past few years cannot be overemphasized. In 2017 for instance, the contribution of telecommunication sector to the GDP was estimated to be 10%.
Developing of science and technology in Nigeria will entail encouraging the youths to develop interest STEM fields in order to boost economic development in the country.