The Council for Scientific and Industrial Technology (CSIR), South Africa’s pre-eminent multidisciplinary research and development agency, revealed its new logo and branding on Friday. Its previous logo was just the letters CSIR, but with the C, S and I linked together and the apparently capital I surmounted by a tittle (a superscript dot) like a small i. The slogan (formally called a ‘positioning statement’) underneath was “our future through science” (all in small letters).
The new logo has the agency’s initials as separate capitals – C S I R – and accompanied by a broken circle containing highly stylised human figures and other shapes, in the colours of the national flag (see the accompanying illustration). The new positioning statement is “Touching lives through innovation”. The dropping of the tittle over the letter i is to stress that it is a capital I and so to symbolically rank the word ‘Industrial’ equally with ‘Scientific’, explained the CSIR in its announcement.
“The refreshed CSIR brand reflects our strategic intent of ensuring the equal importance of industrial and scientific development in our innovation portfolio,” explained CSIR CEO Dr Thulani Dlamini. “The human figures in our logo symbolise the value of being a people-centred organisation and the commitment to improving the quality of life of South Africans. The tilted circle symbolises collaboration, strength, resilience and the continuity of the CSIR’s research. The colours of the South African flag symbolise prosperity, diversity and unity, and show the CSIR’s patriotism.”
The new logo and branding follow on from the development of a new vision, a new strategy and a new structure for the council, which have been developed and rolled out over the past two years. The new positioning statement serves to highlight the ultimate mission of the CSIR, which is to improve people’s lives through innovatory scientific and industrial development.
“The new strategy enables the organisation to look at its scientific and technological capabilities from a fresh perspective,” elucidated CSIR board chairperson Professor Thokozani Majozi. “In particular, it prompts us to engage with industry on their needs, in order to provide tangible and innovative solutions that seek to improve their competitive edge, which will ultimately contribute positively to our economy. The refreshed brand gives equal emphasis to scientific and industrial development as articulated in our mandate.”
He emphasised that a constant element throughout the 75-year history of the CSIR was the conscious commitment to science and technology to stimulate the development of the economy. “The CSIR is an exceptional organisation and our unique multidisciplinary capability and the focus on making an impact in improving the quality of lives of South Africans, is our steadfast pursuit,” he highlighted. “The CSIR is a well governed institution that continuously strengthens its capabilities to support a capable state.”