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‘Why majority of master’s dissertation, PhD thesis in Nigeria end up on shelf’

By Ann Godwin, Port Harcourt
25 November 2021   |   4:08 am
A don and postdoctoral researcher at the University of Finland, Dr. Dandison Ukpabi, has described as national waste, situations where majority of master’s dissertations and PhD thesis in Nigeria end up on the shelf.

A don and postdoctoral researcher at the University of Finland, Dr. Dandison Ukpabi, has described as national waste, situations where majority of master’s dissertations and PhD thesis in Nigeria end up on the shelf.

Ukpabi said if the nation can emulate the Finland model where ideas from such graduands are converted into business, the nation would advance economically and in other sectors.

The university teacher, who spoke during an online interview with The Guardian, regretted that the current practice in Nigeria is retrogressive.

He warned that if the nation continues with the current path, things would remain stagnated.

Ukpabi pointed out that there are several dissertations with sound business potentials, but because there are no structures in place to harness the projects into businesses, they eventually end up on the shelf.

He said, “We have the ideas but they are not used. Currently, majority of master’s dissertation and PhD thesis in Nigeria end up on the shelf. This is a national waste. Finland has an agency called Business Finland. They provide mentorship and financial support for master’s and PhD graduands who wish to convert those ideas into business. Nigeria can emulate Finland.

“Every university has an internal online repository of their thesis and dissertations. Each institution also has a research and innovation unit. This unit picks up the projects as soon as they are dropped in the system and goes through them”

He explained that thereafter, authors of the projects with business potentials are invited for a chat to ascertain if the author wishes to pursue a business venture with it stressing that an affirmative answer lays the foundation for mentoring sessions with the unit.

“The mentoring session is to guide the author on how to produce a business proposal from the dissertation. The completed proposal is sent to Business Finland for funding. Though funding is not automatic, most projects that have gone through mentoring session usually get funded. This is how some business ventures are born”

He expressed optimism that several businesses would be birthed in the country if the authorities emulate the model.