Carnegie Mellon University in Rwanda Receives Grant from Ricoh Innovations for eHealth Research
Ricoh Innovations strengthens ties with major research institutions in emerging countries
KIGALI, Rwanda and MENLO PARK, California. — February 12, 2013 — Carnegie Mellon University in Rwanda (CMU-R) has been awarded a grant from Ricoh Innovations Inc. (RII) to advance research on information and communication technology (ICT) for healthcare in developing countries. RII is a Silicon Valley-based subsidiary of Ricoh Company, Ltd, the leading provider of digital office solutions, and develops innovative technologies and new business opportunities for Ricoh. CMU-R is a collaboration between Carnegie Mellon University and the Government of Rwanda to build ICT capacity in Rwanda and throughout East Africa through graduate education and research. In partnership with the Government of Rwanda, it is the first U.S. research institution to offer engineering graduate degrees in Africa.
The unrestricted grant will be used to support the research of CMU-R’s Assistant Professor Hedda Schmidtke and Scholar-in-Residence Suzana Brown in the area of ICT for healthcare. CMU-R has identified ICT for healthcare as a principal research thrust because of the profound impact that advances in this sector can have in developing countries. Creative innovations that address the needs of developing countries have the potential for significant impact because of the growing demands on limited expensive medical resources.
“We are delighted to receive this grant from RII,” stated Bruce Krogh, director of CMU-R. “It makes it possible for our faculty and students to launch new research into ICT innovations that will significantly improve healthcare in developing countries like Rwanda, particularly through the use of mobile technology.”
In February 2012, RII established a subsidiary in Bangalore, India to combine market-oriented technology development with regionally optimized research to pioneer new business tailored for emerging countries throughout the world. Ricoh also recently announced its financial endowment and industry partnership for the creation of a design and innovation center at the Indian Institute of Technology Gandhinagar.
“We are proud to support this important research in Rwanda,” stated Dr. Nikhil Balram, president and CEO of RII. “RII is working to advance Open Innovation in emerging countries through collaboration between industry and researchers, yielding both technological and academic advances. The research carried out at CMU-R has the potential to improve the way healthcare is delivered not only in Rwanda, but throughout the world. ”
CMU-R plays a significant role in the Government of Rwanda’s vision to create a regional ICT Center of Excellence in Kigali, and to establish ICT as a major component of a knowledge-based economy. CMU-R began offering the Master of Science in Information Technology (MSIT) program in August 2012, and is currently accepting applications for admission to the MSIT program in August 2013.