Christensen Institute, MIT Legatum Center launch bootcamp for African innovators

27 Jan 2021, 12:00 am
Financial Nigeria


The bootcamp is designed as an eight-session workshop to be hosted in Nigeria, Ghana, Ethiopia, Kenya, Rwanda, Senegal and Uganda.

Senior Research Fellow at the Christensen Institute, Efosa Ojomo

The Clayton Christensen Institute, a nonprofit and nonpartisan think tank based in Boston and Silicon Valley in the United States, has announced a collaboration with the MIT Legatum Center for Development and Entrepreneurship aimed at empowering early-stage entrepreneurs in seven African countries to create new economic growth engines. The new collaboration, called Market-creating Innovation (MCI) Bootcamp, aims to bridge the gap between emerging market entrepreneurs and market-creating innovation opportunities.  

The bootcamp is designed as an eight-session workshop to be hosted in Nigeria, Ghana, Ethiopia, Kenya, Rwanda, Senegal and Uganda, according to a statement sent to Financial Nigeria by the Christensen Institute, which has an editorial partnership with this publication to promote market innovation. The sessions will take place virtually during 2021 until it is safe to host them in-person.

The Institute said empowering innovators in an economy to develop market-creating innovations or MCIs will unleash an entrepreneurial wave that has the potential to change the economic trajectory of the nation. The bootcamp curriculum is anchored on the ideas championed by the late Harvard Business School (HBS) professor, Clayton Christensen, in his last book, The Prosperity Paradox: How Innovation Can Lift Nations Out of Poverty, co-authored by Efosa Ojomo, senior research fellow at the Christensen Institute. The book highlights the power of MCIs to create inclusive prosperity for organisations and society.

"Since publishing The Prosperity Paradox, the Christensen Institute has been thinking about ways to bridge the gap between our knowledge of market-creating innovations and how emerging market entrepreneurs can more predictably build them,” said Nigeria-born Ojomo. “That thinking has led to an exciting collaboration with the MIT Legatum Center for Development and Entrepreneurship."

According to the author and researcher, MCIs transform complex and expensive products into simple and affordable ones, enabling more people who would benefit from them to gain access. He argues that these innovations unleash a domino effect of sustainable economic development, lifting thousands, if not millions, out of poverty in the process.

MCIs are touted as the solutions to many African challenges, including poverty, lack of access to healthcare and electricity and inadequate housing. By empowering innovators in the seven African countries with the principles and frameworks necessary to create new markets that make products affordable, the innovators will be able to build a robust foundation for inclusive and sustained economic prosperity for all, according the statement by the Institute.

Over the course of the programme, participants will gain access to some of the most reputable and forward-thinking innovators and investors committed to emerging economies. Upon completing the course, participants will get a Market-creating Innovation Bootcamp Certificate of Completion. They will also have an opportunity to create an investment pitch deck that may be shared with a select group of investors committed to investing in emerging market-focused innovations.

Interested individuals can learn more at The Legatum Center is a research and capacity building centre based at MIT. The Center was founded on the belief that entrepreneurs and their market-driven solutions are critical to advancing economic and social progress in the developing world.