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17.04.2019 Press Release

UNU-INRA Launches Lecture Series

Vicentia Quartey
Release UNU-INRA Launches Lecture Series

The inaugural session of the Professor Alexander Adum Kwapong Lecture Series: Nature Speaks – a new initiative co-convened by the United Nations Institute for Natural Resources in Africa (UNU-INRA) and the University of Ghana (UG) in honour of the late Professor Kwapong, first Ghanaian Vice Chancellor of the University of Ghana and first African Vice-Rector of the United Nations University – will be delivered by Dr Frannie Léautier, Chief Operating Officer of the Eastern and Southern Africa Trade and Development Bank (TDB) on the topic “Innovation, Infrastructure, Technology and the Promise of Renewed Growth for Natural Resource Management in Africa - Blind Alleys or Transformational Change?”

The inaugural lecture – to be chaired by Professor Ebenezer Oduro Owusu, Vice Chancellor of the University of Ghana – will be held 25 April 2019, 2pm – 5pm, at the ISSER conference centre of the University of Ghana.

In a remark on behalf of UNU-INRA, Dr Fatima Denton, Director stated that the African continent is currently grappling with mega-trends related to rapid urbanization, youth unemployment, technology deficit, migratory fluxes and gender inequalities. As a research institute with an Africa-wide mandate, UNU-INRA’s work is pivotal in raising awareness about the interactions between natural resources and growth, and the applications of scientific findings to decision making processes.

“The Professor Alexander Adum Kwapong Lecture Series: Nature Speaks by UNU-INRA is about thought leadership, independent thinking, innovative and dynamic ideas – impetus and new information to address increasingly complex development challenges of Africa,” she said.

The lecture series is organised in honour of Professor Kwapong, for his instrumental role in the establishment of UNU-INRA as the first UNU institute in Africa.

In the spirit of the ideals and life of Professor Kwapong, the lecture series will host prominent thought leaders from across Africa and elsewhere around the globe and create opportunities for independent thinking to challenge conventional wisdom and narratives with bold and innovative ideas that will lead Africa towards a natural-resource driven, inclusive and sustainable development.

More information on the launch event and the lecture series is available on