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  The southeastern region of Nigeria consists of five states namely: Abia, Anambra, Ebonyi, Enugu and Imo. It is the home to over 35 million Igbo people, the third-largest ethnic group in Nigeria, double the size of the Netherlands. This group has been recognized for their entrepreneurial spirit and their strong love for education, which has been exhibited in national exams where the 5 states are among the top 10 performing states in the area of education. Besides, it’s the region with the highest number of professors – Imo State is graced with this record.
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Unfortunately, despite these potentials, the region lags behind in the area of startup growth and development in the tech ecosystem. For the records, the startups in the region are abysmally low and there is not a single unicorn in the region. Whereas, all of Nigeria’s unicorns – six of them – are domiciled in Lagos. This problem could be attributed to the fact that the region is bothered by various insecurity problems ranging from militancy to kidnapping. Nevertheless, in the midst of this situation, the region with mass mobilisation, orientation and purposeful governance, can seize the opportunities that are inherent in the tech ecosystem. Therefore, this article posits that there are several steps that Southeastern Nigeria takes to build and grow a strong tech ecosystem like Lagos:
  • Invest in education and training

One of the key drivers of a strong tech ecosystem is a skilled and educated workforce. Southeastern Nigeria can invest in educational institutions and programs that focus on computer science, engineering, and other technical fields. This could include supporting the development of coding schools, internships, and other educational initiatives.
  • Foster entrepreneurship and innovation

Encouraging entrepreneurship and innovation is crucial for building a strong tech ecosystem. Southeastern Nigeria can support the development of startups and small businesses through initiatives such as incubators, accelerators, and funding programs.
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  • Promote collaboration and networking

A strong tech ecosystem depends on collaboration and networking among businesses, startups, and other stakeholders. Southeastern Nigeria can create opportunities for tech companies and professionals to connect and collaborate through events, meetups, and other networking activities.
  • Attract and retain top talent

In order to build a strong tech ecosystem, it is important to attract and retain top talent. Southeastern Nigeria can work to create a welcoming and supportive environment for tech professionals, including through the development of affordable housing and other amenities.
  • Support research and development

Investing in research and development is crucial for driving innovation and growth in the tech sector. Southeastern Nigeria can support the development of R&D initiatives through partnerships with academic institutions, grants, and other funding programs.
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  • Build a strong infrastructure

A strong tech ecosystem requires a robust infrastructure, including access to reliable electricity, broadband internet, and transportation. Southeastern Nigeria can work to improve and expand these infrastructure components to support the growth of the tech sector.

Final Words

Overall, building and growing a strong tech ecosystem like Lagos will require a combination of investments in education, entrepreneurship, and infrastructure, as well as efforts to attract and retain top talent and support innovation and collaboration. By taking these steps, Southeastern Nigeria can position itself as a hub for tech innovation and growth in the country. Featured Image Source: Crossbeam
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This article was first published on 7th January 2023


Nnaemeka is an academic scholar with a degree in History and International Studies from the University of Nigeria, Nsukka. He is also a creative writer, content creator, storyteller, and social analyst.

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