The General Secretariat of the Higher Council for Science and Technology (HCST) got the approval on the establishment of the National Center for Innovation (NCI) as affiliated center. Whereas, HCST is concerned about scientific and technological innovation. The idea came about as a result of a World Bank Mission, which stated in its report after visiting the Higher Council within the technical assistance in the preparation of “the National Policy and Strategy for Science, Technology and Innovation (2017-2013)”, through the Ministry of Planning and International Cooperation.
The first phase of the Project (the first two years of the center’s lifetime) will be financed from Deauville partnership for the Middle East and North Africa of the World Bank (MENA Transition Fund), in cooperation with the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development as the focal point in support of implementation with a budget of 2.600 million dollars.
The objectives of the National Centre for Innovation are:
- The NCI will be the national one-stop information and referral hub for all activities in the country related to innovation and private sector development by coordinating national and international administrative, financial and technical services to nurture and support innovation.
- NCI will also provide legal/regulatory advocacy and advisory services to small and medium enterprises (SMEs) while creating a feedback mechanism to the government to ensure best practice and transparency.
Finally, all coordinating activities of the NCI will be wrapped into a robust technology platform that will combine existing data resources with the data to be collected in order to coordinate resource referrals, monitor and evaluate innovation activities and other key performance indicators reflecting the economic shifts towards innovation. The establishment of this center is valuable to Jordan as it will eliminate the duplication of services, arrest inefficiencies in providing funding and support to the private sector, increase the efficacy of donor contributions through a coordinated facility and provide vital national statistics on the impact of innovation initiatives so as to monitor progress and areas for improvement.