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Accelerator Lab aims to use innovation to tackle SA's biggest social problems

13th February 2020
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From Creamer Media in Johannesburg, this is the Real Economy Report.

Sashnee Moodley:

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In an effort to provide a network and platform through which new solutions can be developed to mitigate and solve the country’s challenges, the United Nations Development Programme has launched its 60th Accelerator Lab in South Africa. Journalist Simone Liedtke attended the launch event last month.

Simone Liedtke:

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According to UN resident coordinator Nardos Bekele-Thomas, the UNDP’s “flagship programme” seeks to implement a new way of working together in development and is also the UNDP’s way of redoubling its efforts to ensure an accelerated pace to achieving the Sustainable Development Goals – or SDGs – by 2030.

In his keynote address at the launch, Higher Education, Science and Innovation Minister Dr Blade Nzimande cited the lab’s launch as a “timely intervention” in South Africa’s innovation journey.

Higher Education, Science & Innovation Minister Dr Blade Nzimande:

Simone Liedtke:

The Minister also expressed his support of the Accelerator Lab, and said that through the use thereof, will assist his department in finding effective ways of assisting South Africa in building a post-school education and training foundation.

Higher Education, Science & Innovation Minister Dr Blade Nzimande:

Simone Liedtke:

Delegates also got an opportunity to see South Africa’s first humanoid robot, named Pepper, in action at the launch event as she quickly moderated a Q&A session. The robot is a prime example of what innovation and technology can achieve.

Other News making headlines:

Mantashe eases constraints on mining companies' ability to generate own electricity

Mineral Resources and Energy Minister Gwede Mantashe has assured mining companies in South Africa they will be able to generate their own energy to counter severe energy constraints.

Minister of Mineral Resources and Energy, Gwede Mantashe:

Sashnee Moodley:

That’s Creamer Media’s Real Economy Report. Join us again next week for more news and insight into South Africa’s real economy. Don’t forget to listen to the audio version of our Engineering News daily email newsletter. 

EDITED BY: Creamer Media Reporter
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