Salone News

How Sierra Leone is using 3D printing to become a model state

2 July 2019 at 20:59 | 2146 views

By David Moinina Sengeh
Adviser to the President of Sierra Leone; Chief Innovation Officer, Directorate of Science, Technology and Innovation, Government of Sierra Leone

Venkataraman Sundareswaran
Fellow, Digital Trade, World Economic Forum

Recently, President Julius Maada Bio used a 3D printer to create a map of Sierra Leone, illustrating the distribution of the number of girls not attending primary school across the country. The idea evolved over lunch at State House, where senior government officials were discussing the status of education within the country.

The president wondered about ways in which existing complex data could be made more interpretable, so that anyone could understand the challenges facing the education sector. It was difficult for other people to fully participate in the discussions because there were no screens at the table. The Directorate of Science, Technology and Innovation (DSTI), located in State House, engaged immediately to calculate the distribution of out-of-school girls in each chiefdom and generated an accurate representation of the analyses in a 3D model.