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CHOGM 2018 kicks off with launch of Commonwealth Innovation Hub

16 April 2018

Commonwealth Secretary-General Patricia Scotland launched the Commonwealth Innovation Hub on the opening day of the 2018 Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting in London.

“On my appointment as Commonwealth Secretary-General, I had promised to put both ‘common’ and ‘wealth’ back into the Commonwealth. This included the wealth of our common ideas and innovations – from 53 member states, 87 organisations of the family and 2.4 billion people of the Commonwealth,” said the Secretary-General. “I have fulfilled my promise by creating a digital platform to tap and unleash the innovation wealth of the Commonwealth. The establishment of this hub is a quantum leap in our reform and renewal process.”

The Innovation Hub has five facets. The ‘display’ space showcases ideas and innovation stories from all across the Commonwealth. The ‘data’ portal is a repository of Commonwealth information and knowledge resources and includes thousands of publications. The ‘delivery’ space is the Commonwealth’s digital showroom from where anyone can download, read and use the knowledge products and toolkits created by the Secretariat. And the ‘discovery’ space is an innovation lab for incubating new ideas and accelerating innovations with maximum social impact.

The fifth facet is partnerships.  The Secretariat has initiated a number of collaborations with international, civil society and knowledge partners, said the Assistant Secretary-General, Nabeel Goheer.  It includes an agreement to establish a Commonwealth Innovation Fund in partnership with the Global Innovation Fund, a social venture fund capitalised by the governments of Australia, UK and South Africa, among others. The goal of the Commonwealth Innovation Fund will be to enable innovators in Commonwealth countries access early-stage to funding not available through traditional channels.

“In a world that is shaped by innovation, the Commonwealth is a global family and a unique group of nations with a shared commitment to prosperity. With the support of Commonwealth governments, and working with the Secretariat, the Commonwealth Innovation Fund can help make the vision of a common future for the 53 Commonwealth countries a reality,” said Dr Alix Zwane, Chief Executive Officer of the Global Innovation Fund.

Commonwealth Innovation Hub: https://www.thecommonwealth.io