The Innovation of Innovation


ɪnəˈveɪʃ(ə)n/nounnoun: innovation

  1. the action or process of innovating.”innovation is crucial to the continuing success of any organization”synonyms:change, alteration, revolution, upheaval, transformation, metamorphosis, reorganization, restructuring, rearrangement, recasting, remodelling, renovation, restyling, variation; More
    • a new method, idea, product, etc.plural noun: innovations “technological innovations designed to save energy”


It’s a word that dominates every conversation, phrase and thought in the context of business and technology. Organisations, Governments and, large corporations to small business, all strive towards that progressive ideology of change for the better.

The World Economic Forum ‘believes that innovation is critical to the future well-being of society and to driving economic growth.’ Having launched Technology Pioneer in 2000, they showcase technology pioneers, annually, driving significant change in key sectors.


  WEF’s innovation showcase


The South African Department of Science and Technology, in recent news, released a white paper on science, technology and innovation, vowing to double South Africa’s expenditure on research and development as a percentage of the country’s gross domestic product – from 0.76% to 1.5% over the next decade.





The African Innovation Awards just announced their nominees for this year’s $185 000 Innovation Prize for Africa Awards.

AIF Chairman, Walter Fust said that, “Our theme this year prompts the need for increased collaboration between government, business, industry, innovation enablers and the community to further realise African prosperity and economic freedom,” he added.

And there is no difficulty in finding innovation hubs/incubators or programmes in South Africa, Africa and across the globe, which foster the spirit and tools to encourage innovation.

The recent SA Innovation Summit held in Cape Town, South Africa, was yet another showcase of the ongoing dialogue and development on innovation. The two day conference focused on themes of:


  • Fourth Industrial Revolution led by DTI Minister Rob Davies
  • A FEM Bio Biz pitching Den for the SADC region
  • An Inventors Garage supported by Popular Mechanics
  • Supply Chain Integration…

And many more interesting concepts and the impact of innovation.

Abbas Jamie, Head of Innovation for Africa at Aurecon, chatted with us about his attendance at the Summit.

The innovation summit is a great place to get a feel of what innovation is about in South Africa. it’s a melting pot of startups, investors, educators, disruptors and youth all coming together under one roof to see how they can co create a better South Africa. I just love the energy over the two days of talks, exhibitions, hackathons and networking. Particularly liked the message from Prof Phakeng:”Entrepreneurs do not wait for permission or systems to be created, they make things happen.” Strong message to the young entrepreneurs in the room. The #SAIS2018 did not dissappoint, will definately be back next year.

Making things happen is certainly at the heart of innovation. It is about taking concepts, products and services, and transforming them from a socially awkward state to a progressive form of socially acceptable use for a better humanity.

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