Creativity and innovation — important to individuals’ welfare

National Center for Innovation
(Photo: National Center for Innovation Facebook)
AMMAN — Thursday marked the World Creativity and Innovation Day, which falls on April 21 each year. اضافة اعلان

The occasion is a good time to focus on the National Center for Innovation (NCI), one of the main innovation-supporting projects of the Higher Council for Science and Technology (HCST), established in 2018 to reflect HRH Prince El-Hassan bin Talal’s vision and efforts in putting science and technology in the service of innovation and creativity,

According to HCST Assistant Secretary-General for Scientific and Technological Affairs Hussam Khasawneh, NCI is a project co-funded by the MENA Transition Fund and the government of Jordan under the supervision of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD).

Creativity, Khasawneh said, is a tendency “to create or perceive thoughts, choices, or potential outcomes that might solve problems”, while “innovation is converting a creative idea into something new or a change made to an existing product, process, or service”.

The most common way of adopting and developing innovative ideas, Khasawneh said, is through entrepreneurship, through establishing startups.

HCST’s National Policy and Strategy for Science, Technology, and Innovation for the years 2021–2025, he added, includes a model of innovation that combines academia, business, and government to stimulate economic and social development to achieve a knowledge-based economy in Jordan.

Khasawneh told Jordan News that by the end of October 2022, HCST plans to organize and host the Second Union for the Mediterranean Forum on green innovation and careers for empowering the Mediterranean youth. The event will “shed light on how to bring education, skills, and employability to people living in the Mediterranean region, while explaining the successful cooperation among the academia, business, and government in the region, including Jordan”, he said.

According to Khasawneh, “Jordan has an excellent opportunity to benefit from the demographic transition it goes through and the high proportion of the working-age population, as well as to address the growing unemployment rates among young people, by raising their level of productivity and competitiveness in the local, regional and international markets.

“In addition, it is essential to develop the youth’s capabilities and productivity, providing them with skills, experiences, and knowledge, developing the idea of creativity, innovation, and entrepreneurship, and including these concepts in schools’ curricula in the early stages of education.” 

According to Khasawneh, “creativity and innovation are important in improving the individuals’ economic status, self-employment, and income and proving them with independence”.    

As such, HCST intends to launch a self-employment initiative in partnership with the Amman Chamber of Industry, to expand the economic base by matching freelancers, startups, and SMEs, and aligning them with the needs of the markets, thus contributing to economic and social stability, said Khasawneh.

He also mentioned the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) which, according to him, are “the most ambitious development plan in mankind’s history as they are a guide to end poverty, safeguard the planet, and guarantee that all individuals live in prosperity and peace”, saying that it is vital to strive for green economic growth through innovations and creativity in all fields to achieve them, as “innovation and sustainability are two sides of the same coin”.

To accomplish the SDGs and build a comprehensive and versatile future for the planet, there is need of joint endeavors, he said, stressing that “creativity, innovation, and entrepreneurship are increasingly seen as the key to future welfare and business success. Innovation incorporates new services, processes, technologies, and better approaches for utilizing existing technologies to ensure the economies’ development without jeopardizing the planet and its resources”.

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