Jozi’s planning a digital revolution

Barry Dwolatzky, University of the Witwatersrand Over the past two years, an initiative has been underway to put an area of central Johannesburg on the map as a place where digital innovation and entrepreneurship happens in South Africa. There is a growing belief that the work being done by the University of the Witwatersrand a…

City slums: a big health risk in southern Africa

By Michelle Galloway, media officer for the Stellenbosch Institute for Advanced Study (STIAS). Edited by Anina Mumm Urbanisation has a huge impact on health in South Africa if one considers that, according to a 2012 UNICEF report, South Africa is the most urbanised country in southern Africa and more than half of children in South Africa…

South African science is making its mark – but still has a way to go

John Butler-Adam, University of Pretoria Foundation essay: This article is part of a series marking the launch of The Conversation in Africa. Our foundation essays are longer than our usual comment and analysis articles and take a wider look at key issues affecting society. South Africa is fortunate to boast excellence in a large number…

“Digital divide can do more harm than apartheid” – Minister

South Africa’s Minister for the Department of Telecommunications and Postal Services Siyabonga Cwele has stressed that closing the digital divide is just as important as the struggle against apartheid was. “We all know how much harm apartheid did. Failing to close the digital divide will do more harm than apartheid did. In the spirit of co-operation, we…

iShack delivers power (and television) to the people

If you are poor and living in an informal settlement in South Africa, housing is a waiting game – if you qualify, that is. According to the most recent census data, more than three million people live in shacks in informal settlements, which equates to about 1.2-million households throughout the country. And the government’s subsidised…

How Gauteng gov will allocate investments in tech

Gauteng MEC of finance Barbara Creecy, in her budget speech at the Gauteng Legislature has revealed exactly how much would be allocated to the five corridors of development, which  include tech projects, announced by Gauteng Premier David Makhura last month in his State of the Province Address. The Central Development Corridor aimed at the financial sector, Information Communication Technology…

The science of South African spy cables

  With the recent scandal surrounding the leaking of South African spy cables, The Science Inside looks into the science and technology behind the modern spy game. The show covers SA’s missile program, the psychology of lying, and the high-tech gear that spies are using in today’s world.

Does Joe Public still trust science?

By Marina Joubert Trust in science as an institution is deeply rooted in modern societies, but it has to be questioned whether this is also synonymous with trust in science. How is it earned, and how is it also eroded? These questions were posed by Prof Peter Weingart, Research Chair in Science Communication at Stellenbosch…

It starts with a zozo in Kuruman

It’s eight o’clock in the morning in the Northern Cape town of Kuruman. At a small clinic, two nurses are about to start attending to the 60 or so patients who began queuing early on. Half of the patients fit inside the little waiting room; the rest wait outside, including a young mother with her…

Government links innovators and business

Government is trying to close the gap between innovation and businesses, with the introduction of the “innovation bridge”. Tuesday marks day one of South Africa’s first “innovation bridge” in Pretoria, a Department of Science and Technology event to match-make innovators with business. While a lot of innovation and research & development (R&D) takes place in South…