The Faculty of Computing and IT at Makerere University and the Faculty of Arts, Computing, Engineering & Sciences at Sheffield Hallam University, UK have received fund from British Council through its Education Partnerships in Africa scheme to establish partnership between the two universities. The fund obtained under the British Council competitive Partnership Project Grants was sought to implement a jointly proposed project titled Mobile Innovation and Enterprise whose main objective is to respond to the fast growing mobile market in the country in particular and in the region in general. The project proposal jointly submitted by Idris A. Rai, Associate Professor in Communication Networks at CIT Makerere and Andrew Darden, Reader in e-SocialAction at Communication and Computing Research Centre, Sheffield Hallam University sought to blend teaching on mobile computing and innovation with experiences of entrepreneurship and user-centered design hoping to develop a cohort of young minds who have the skills to lead Ugandan innovation in mobile sector. Specific key expected outputs of the project include:
- A cohort of students with skills in mobile computing, user-centered design, entrepreneurship and innovation.
- A structure for continuing the training to develop more students in future years.
- A group of staff at Makerere who can lead skills development in mobile computing, user-centered design, entrepreneurship and innovation.
- A new set of relationships between Makerere and local and international businesses, non-governmental organizations and community organizations.
- A business plan to develop a mobile business incubation centre at Makerere where graduates will work with local and international businesses to develop innovative mobile phone business concepts and spin outs.
Private sector partners in this project include Orange Labs, research labs of Orange and DMark Mobile, Ugandan a premier telecom value added service provider.