Importance of Openness for Production and Innovation in Informal Sector Cluster: Lessons From Nigeria

Importance of Openness for Production and Innovation in Informal Sector Cluster: Lessons From Nigeria

Billy Adegbola Oluwale (Obafemi Awolowo University, Nigeria), Oluseye Oladayo Jegede (SARChI Entrepreneurship Education, University of Johannesburg, South Africa), Blessing Funke Ajao (National Centre for Technology Management, Nigeria) and Emmanuel Makanjuola Ogunjemilua (Obafemi Awolowo University, Nigeria)
Copyright: © 2021 |Pages: 15
DOI: 10.4018/IJSKD.2021100102
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The study investigated the role of openness, networking, and partnership on production and innovation among firms within the Otigba ICT cluster in Nigeria. A questionnaire were administered on 200 purposively selected business owners/leaders of informal tech-based enterprises in the cluster. The results showed that there were simultaneous occurrence of competition and co-operation within the cluster. Modes of openness within the cluster were by exchanging information and sharing experience with other technicians. Firms were majorly (70%) involved in process and marketing innovations (30%). Openness, networking, and partnership played a very significant role on access to information, customers, new domestic market, tools/technology, suppliers of raw materials, and inputs among the enterprises. A majority (95%) of the respondent enterprises which exhibited cluster attributes were involved in one form of innovation or the other. The study concluded that openness, networking, and partnership had engendered scaling-up among the enterprises.
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1. Introduction

Nigeria’s adoption of science technology and innovation (STI) policy have brought enormous opportunities; growth and poverty reduction and increase in the number of technology-based firms among others. Furthermore, STI policy have opened the mind of “youngpreneurs” to the importance of science and technology to solving economic problem. “Youngpreneurs are conceptually defined as innovative business minded who sense business opportunities, acquired the needed technologies and timely meet customers’ needs for wealth making.” In addition to that, most of the emergent youngpreneurs’ technology-based firms were informally established and clustered because of the conglomeration opportunities amidst others such as cost sharing, warehouse sharing and knowledge sharing. While the rise of empirical study on Otigba cluster firms in Lagos Nigeria has been extensively analysed (Oyelaran-Oyeyinka, 2006). However, our knowledge about the interaction role of openness, networking, partnership and innovation in this phenomenon remains limited. Hence, this contribution aims to contributing to that knowledge gap.

This study heading is as follows; related literature review, methodology, results, discussions, conclusions and implication of the study.

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