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OUK Vice Chancellor Champions Climate Innovation during Webinar

OUK Vice Chancellor Champions Climate Innovation during Webinar

The Vice Chancellor of the Open University of Kenya (OUK), Prof. Elijah Omwenga, took center stage in a pivotal keynote address during a Webinar focusing on "The role of academia in accelerating innovation towards climate resilience." The event, themed "Technology and Social Innovation towards fighting Climate Change," was organized by Konza Technopolis as a result of the Konza Climate Resilience Innovation Challenge that seeks to address the climate change problems currently faced in Kenya with a focus on seven key areas: Drought Resilience and Climate Smart Agriculture, Soil Management and Preservation, the Circular Economy, Clean and Renewable Energy,
Air Quality and Carbon Emissions, Forestation, and Water Harvesting and Preservation. During his address, the Vice Chancellor shed light on the integral role that the Open University of Kenya plays in advancing innovation to combat climate change. The University, as a proactive institution, has strategically aligned its efforts in teaching,
research, innovation, community outreach, and extension towards this critical cause. "As a new university, we have tailored our strategies to confront the urgent issue of climate change. This involves integrating climate change considerations into our curriculum and employing experiential learning strategies. We actively engage with the
communities surrounding us by initiating projects that have a tangible impact," emphasized the Vice Chancellor.
He also underscored the University's commitment to fostering research and innovation through a multidisciplinary approach. “The incorporation of cutting-edge technologies, such as artificial intelligence (AI) and blockchain, has become a cornerstone of the institution's initiatives. Moreover, the university provides a dynamic platform for the design, testing, and implementation of innovative practices dedicated to tackling climate change head-on,” he added.

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The Open University of Kenya (OUK) is a virtual learning institution deeply committed to advancing education and driving socio-economic growth within Kenya and beyond. Access to higher education has remained a major challenge in Kenya and this has disadvantaged citizens who seek to improve their knowledge, upscale skills and for posterity. Experts have noted that increasing the number of educational institutions so as to match the rate of population growth is an extremely difficult if not impossible solution especially when financial and other resource constraints are considered. Open and Distance Learning approaches, coupled with innovative ICT solutions, have proofed viable alternatives to providing excellent education to millions of people located wherever and whenever by different life circumstances.