Building a Sustainable Innovation Ecosystem in Universities for Ideation and Entrepreneurial Competence: The University of Lagos Experience




Innovation management, Technology transfer, Research Management, University Entreprenuership, Research commercialisation


What is new?

Universities in the global south particularly in sub-Saharan African countries have not impacted greatly on their host communities as research efforts in these universities are not linked to innovation addressing societal challenges.

What was the approach?

The University of Lagos (UNILAG), recognizing that a robust innovation ecosystem is central to building capacity in the innovation space for unleashing the creative potentials of both faculty and students beyond traditional teaching and research, activated three units to drive innovation-related activities in the university. This article presents critical discussions on the University of Lagos’s experience in driving innovation through novel institutional frameworks facilitated by the Research Management Office, the Innovation & Technology Management Office, and the Entrepreneurship & Skills Development Centre. The article also presents challenges encountered in the process and strategies employed to successfully navigate through the challenges, lessons learned, successes recorded in patents and intellectual property management, as well as future directions for greater impact.

What is the academic impact?

The paper makes recommendations for sustainability and for the implementation of efficient strategies in newly established units seeking to strategically drive innovation-related activities.

What is the wider impact?

Practical implications of the UNILAG’s experience for Research and management practitioners in developing countries are articulated.

Author Biographies

Emeka Patrick Okonji, University of Lagos

Dr. Patrick E. Okonji has vast experience working as Senior Research Fellow and as University Research and Innovation Manager. He possesses strong academic and professional background in Public Health and has worked with Research Centres focusing on Public Health and Safety, Epidemiology, Low Vision Rehabilitation, and Environmental Health. He currently works at the Research Management Office of the University of Lagos. His roles include leading and participating in cutting-edge research in the fields of Public Health, Environmental Health, Low Vision Rehabilitation, and Digital Health. He also works with and support research universities on efficient strategies for exploring funding opportunities and for ensuring adherence to funders’ guidelines in the conduct of innovation-driven research. Patrick coordinates competitive research studies along tested value propositions to promote sustainable and inclusive development through strategic engagement with stakeholders with interests in the research to market Innovation and ensure seamless technology transfer.

Prof M.O.H. Amuda, University of Lagos

Prof. M.O.H. Amuda is the current Director, Centre for Information Technology and Systems at the University of Lagos. He was the immediate Past Head, Department of Metallurgical and Materials Engineering, and the Pioneer Deputy Director (Innovation), Research and Innovation Office University of Lagos, 2017-2021; now referred to as the Innovation and Technology Management Office (ITMO). He is also the Pioneer Head, UNILAG Intellectual Property and Technology Transfer Office and Chair in Welding Process Analysis and Fusion-based Surface Modification at the Faculty of Engineering. Prof. Amuda is also the Team Lead, Materials Development and Processing Research Group (MADEPREG) at the Department of Metallurgical and Materials Engineering, Faculty of Engineering, University of Lagos, Akoka Main Campus.




How to Cite

Okonji, E. P., & Amuda, M. O. H. (2023). Building a Sustainable Innovation Ecosystem in Universities for Ideation and Entrepreneurial Competence: The University of Lagos Experience. Journal of Research Management and Administration, 2(1), 202312136.