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The Africa Study Group Presents : “Canadian Business in Africa” and “The Nollywood Phenomenon: open innovation and creative entrepreneurship”

DATE: Wednesday, April 26, 2017

TIME: 17:30 pm – 19:30 pm

LOCATION:  St. Paul’s university, Guigues Hall, 223 Main street, room G102

  1.    Opening remarks
  1.      Bios:

Paul Hitschfeld was ASG Chair from 2009 to 2012. He has worked in international development for over 40 years, with NGOs, CIDA and as a university lecturer. His main interest is in the post-independence experience of African countries.

He will provide a short report on the recent Canadian Council on Africa Roundtable on Increasing Canadian Business Presence in Africa, with his conclusions that efforts to do so will need to be quite narrowly targeted.

Chidi Oguamanam is  a law professor at the University of Ottawa, ad​vi​sor to the World Intellectual Property Organisation (WIPO) and a founder of ABS Canada and OpenAIR (African Innovation Research) See

His presentation will give  preliminary findings from his case study: The Nollywood Phenomenon: Open Innovation and Creative Entrepreneurship at the Grassroots, which goes beyond Nollywood’s  focus on pop culture and on “the social and cultural forces of the local” to showcase the realities of the everyday lives of ordinary West Africans as a kind of openness worthy of interrogation. This approach places Nollywood, disruptively, outside the enclosed intellectual postcolonial political economics of African film history. His work asks:

1) If and in what form a collaborative dynamic can be found in the Nollywood industry?

2) what role technology and other factors play in Nollywood’s evolution?

3) What form of openness explains Nollywood’s success as a brand, industry, and entrepreneurial experience?

Findings from this research not only help understand the dynamism of Nollywood but also contribute to the contentious global debate over the role intellectual property rights have in innovation.