Project Management as a tool to facilitate the establishment of Knowledge Economy in Nigeria


By O. Chima Okereke, PhD

Hereford, UK and

Port Harcourt, Nigeria


  1. Introduction

The necessity of knowledge economy in today’s world is an inescapable economic reality. The products we buy, and the methods with which they are made rely increasingly on knowledge and technology, and less on manual labour. Knowledge Economy has been described as the new premium fuel for economic growth in the 21st century. It fuels new ideas and innovations to boost productivity, and to create new products, new firms, new jobs, and new wealth. It has become an engine of progress in every country. If a country is developed, it has a developed knowledge economy, if a country is lagging behind; a knowledge economy constitutes just a small fraction of its economy.

In this paper, the necessity for a knowledge economy is considered. The advantages of using project management processes to facilitate the achievement of knowledge economy will be explored. The paper will analyse efforts to move Nigeria into a knowledge economy. A natural sequel to this should be suggestions for the establishment of a framework for knowledge economy, and then some concluding remarks.

  1. Necessity of a Knowledge Economy

A UN report states that: “knowledge economy is one in which knowledge has become the engine of the social, economic and cultural development. Knowledge-intensive economic activities are now a factor of production of strategic importance in the leading countries. They have also become the main indicator of the level of development and the readiness of every country for a further economic and cultural growth in the 21st century”. This was a Country Readiness Assessment Report 2002 on Armenia by the UN Economic Commission for Europe. By this measure, about 40 per cent of GDP in the UK was generated by knowledge intensive industries. The percentage to date will be far higher. The knowledge intensive industries by OECD definition include manufacturing, finance, telecommunications, business services, education and health, etc.


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About the Autho

o-chima-okereke-bioChima Okereke, PhD, PMPflag-nigeria

Hereford, UK 

Dr. O. Chima Okereke, Ph.D., MBA, PMP is the Managing Director and CEO of Total Technology Consultants, Ltd., a project management consulting company working in West Africa and the UK. He is a multidisciplinary project management professional, with over 25 years’ experience in in oil and gas, steel and power generation industries. Before embarking on a career in consulting, he worked for thirteen years in industry rising to the position of a chief engineer with specialisation in industrial controls and instrumentation, electronics, electrical engineering and automation. During those 13 years, he worked on every aspect of projects of new industrial plants including design, construction and installation, commissioning, and engineering operation and maintenance in process industries. Chima sponsored and founded the potential chapter of the Project Management Institute (PMI®) in Port Harcourt, Nigeria, acting as president from 2004 to 2010. Dr. Okereke has a Bachelor of Science Degree in Electrical Engineering from the University of Lagos, and a PhD and Masters in Business Administration (MBA) degree from the University of Bradford in the UK. He also has a PMP® certification from the Project Management Institute (PMI®) which he passed at first attempt. He has been a registered engineer with COREN in Nigeria since 1983. For many years, Total Technology has been a partner for Oracle Primavera Global Business Unit, a representative in Nigeria of Oracle University for training in Primavera project management courses, and a Gold Level member of Oracle Partner Network (OPN). In the UK, the company is also a member of the Herefordshire and Worcestershire Chamber of Commerce. He is a registered consultant with the UN agencies. More information can be found at http://www.totaltechnologyconsultants.org/.

Chima is the publisher of Project Management Business Digest, a blog aimed at helping organizations use project management for business success. Dr. Okereke is also an international advisor for PM World. He can be contacted at [email protected] or [email protected].

To view other works by Dr. Okereke, visit his author showcase in the PM World Library at http://pmworldlibrary.net/authors/dr-o-chima-okereke/