Nigerian scholars and academics have been advised to combine both the production of manpower and knowledge as against the sole production of manpower that currently plays out in Nigerian higher institutions of learning. This charge was given by Dr. Abdul Rasaq Mohammed Adisa at a one-day retreat organized by the Department of Mass Communication, Fountain University, Osogbo. The retreat had the theme Research, Knowledge Production and Academic Productivity in an Emerging Knowledge Economy.
Adisa, who spoke on the topic “Mobilizing Pragmatic Research for Sustainable Knowledge Production and Academic Productivity: The What, Why and How?”, emphasized that university teachers have multiple roles as knowledge producer, manpower nurturer and society builder. He identified that for the Nigerian society to move forward, there must be a robust interaction between the town and gown. Adisa posited that knowledge is the most significant variable in the equation of economic development in the 21st century which distinguishes developed nations from underdeveloped ones. He advised that Nigeria should come up with a national policy on knowledge creation and realign research institutes to universities if the country desires an acceleration of its economic development plans.
In his own presentation, Mutiu Iyanda Lasisi, a Communication and Research Consultant, charged the department to come up with a strategic growth plan in order to capture value and deliver more values to concerned stakeholders including parents, students, the immediate host community and the university itself. Lasisi, who spoke on “Strategic Review and Projection: FUO Mass Communication in the First Decade and Beyond’’ said the problem of the majority of universities in Nigeria is their inability to establish a system of achieving their strategic statements as reflected in their vision and mission. He advised the department to draw up its own mission and vision from the university’s strategic statements. Lasisi urged lecturers in the department to also devise a personal strategic growth plan so that they could boost their own career progress alongside that of the department. He emphasized the need for the faculty of the department to also contribute to solving societal and industry problems. He stated that this would open the doors of the industry to the ivory towers.
In his welcome remarks, Kamoru Aremu Salaudeen, who as the Coordinator of the Department, laid the background for the retreat. He said the retreat, which came at a time the department is three years away from a decade of producing manpower for the communication and media industry in Nigeria, provided an avenue for lecturers in the system to reflect on the modus operandi of the department in the last seven years and then devise a strategic growth plan for the years ahead. Salaudeen posited that the department runs a unique curriculum different from other departments of Mass Communication in the country.
The retreat had in attendance all members of the department, Dr. Olusegun Fariudeen Liadi from the Department of Sociology, Mallam Femi Sirajudeen Bakrin from the University Library and other invited guests within the university community.