The Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) and the Technology Innovation Agency (TIA) have announced a five-year partnership on accelerating technology development and commercialisation in the country.
The two organisations on Friday signed a memorandum of agreement in this regard.
Both organisations believe the partnership will drive and enhance research and development (R&D) outputs across all sectors, and build technology development capacities in South Africa.
Through the partnership, the CSIR will be able to access TIA funding programmes that complement and support its R&D programmes and projects, including, but not limited to, the CSIR’s Industry Innovation Partnership Programme.
In turn, it will provide the TIA access to the pipeline of current and future CSIR-developed technologies for use in the development of projects and ventures.
This move supports the objectives of the new CSIR strategy, which is aimed at collaborating with the public and private sectors to develop and localise technologies to advance industries in South Africa.
CSIR CEO Dr Thulani Dlamini hailed the partnership, saying “it is a step in the right direction for conducive effective technology transfer and commercialisation”.
He added that it would advance local innovation and industrial development.
“This partnership is timely as it occurs when the CSIR is implementing its new strategy, which aims to leverage its strong science, engineering and technology capabilities to contribute to industrial development in the country,” he explained.
Dlamini noted that it demonstrated the CSIR’s commitment to innovating and localising technologies, in collaboration with others, while providing knowledge solutions for the inclusive and sustainable advancement of industry, as well as the broader society.
TIA interim CEO Fuzlin Levy-Hassen pointed out that South Africa had a number of science councils with strong research capacity and state of the art facilities and that the CSIR was one such partner that would help place the TIA at the centre of an innovation journey that effectively supported the country’s socioeconomic development imperatives and the competitiveness of its industries.
“The White Paper on Science, Technology and Innovation clearly emphasises the need to intensify our efforts to commercialise outputs from publicly funded research. Our partnership with the CSIR sits at the core of this aspiration,” she noted.