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South Africa : Science and Technology on launch of coffee-table books: 20 Years of Science, Technology and Innovation in South Africa.

The year 2014 marked a milestone in South Africa's history, as the country celebrated 20 years of democracy. During the year government highlighted numerous achievements since the dawn of democracy.

In this spirit, the Department of Science and Technology (DST) celebrated its achievements by launching a coffee-table book called 20 Years of Science, Technology and Innovation in South Africa.

The book highlights the role and importance of science and technology in society. The DST's Director-General, Dr Phil Mjwara, launched the book on Tuesday evening, 9 December 2014.

In addition, the DST launched another coffee-table book marking the 10-year cooperation between South Africa and Japan in the field of science and technology.

The coffee-table book, 20 Years of Science, Technology and Innovation in South Africa, chronicles South Africa's journey in achieving government's ideal of "A better life for all" though science, technology and innovation. The book also records the country's endeavours to carve out a niche for itself on the global science and technology stage.

Addressing the launch event this week, Dr Mjwara said that over the past 20 years South Africa had increasingly become a hub of scientific and technological excellence in a number of areas, playing an important role in major international projects and making groundbreaking progress in research and development.

"For example, today we host a huge allocation of mega international projects, such as the Square Kilometre Array. South Africa is also increasingly making its mark in the international arena in terms of scientific publications," said Dr Mjwara, addressing officials from the Department's entities and from Japan, who attended the event.

The coffee-table book highlights the work that has been done since the adoption of the White Paper on Science and Technology in 1996 when science only benefited a few to today, when a majority of South Africans, especially the marginalised, are benefiting from science.

The publication draws attention to the many initiatives and programmes such as information and communication technology projects that are connecting rural communities to the Internet for the first time, research to discover vaccines for diseases such as HIV and TB, and the exploitation of indigenous plants for medicinal purposes, among other things.

It also provides insight into larger projects such as the Square Kilometre Array and the cutting-edge engineering involved in it, as well as industry projects such as a viable titanium industry in South Africa, the benefits of space science and how the exploitation of hydrogen and fuel cells can provider cleaner alternative energy for the country in the future.

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Publication:Mena Report
Geographic Code:6SOUT
Date:Dec 13, 2014
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