New digital transformation scheme on the cards at BIH

GP Correspondent

Botswana Innovation Hub (BIH) has put out a new initiative expected to spur the country’s digital transformation agenda.

The scheme dubbed Top 1000 Digital Skills is a platform the hub will use to showcase digital skills of software developers to both private and public stakeholders.

Alan Boshwaen said the intention is to collaborate or procure developers skills for development of new digital products or services.

For example, BIH in collaboration with Botswana Insurance Holding Limited (BIHL) recently implemented a financial literacy gaming App named MogwebiQuest. In the project, BIH identified suitable App developers- Power Circle Group through a hackathon activity that was followed by training and expert advisory to yield a desired product for the procuring partner- BIHL.

“We believe that there is an opportunity to adopt the same model with other institutions in the private or public sector to fast-track the development of digital products or services.

“The digital skills area is ripe for private sector investment and participation,” said Boshwaen, adding that the Top 1000 Digital Skills platform initiative relies on a multi-stakeholder partnership for its success.

According to Boshwaen, the BIH Top 1000 Digital Skills platform intends to enlist top 1000 software developers in the country and rank them according to their technical capabilities and completed projects.

He said the registered innovators will be able to participate in developer activities such as workshops, training, hackathons and many others that will be facilitated through the platform.

In addition, the enlisted innovators will be given opportunities in the form of challenges from both the public and private sectors to develop new digital products or services.BIH has been promoting innovation and technology entrepreneurship through supporting the commercialisation of solutions, to contribute towards the diversification of the economy and transform Botswana towards a knowledge economy.

The hub wants the digital transformation to be pivoted on supporting start-ups and existing companies to grow by providing innovation capacity building as well as access to funding and national technology transfer office services.