Speaking to 6 000 Gauteng schools learners at the launch of the 2012 National Science Week at the University of Johannesburg's Soweto campus, Science and Technology Minister Naledi Pandor said that the department strives to contribute to the gradual transformation of South Africa's resource-based economy to a knowledge economy, SAinfo reports.
"It's no doubt," Pandor said, "that science and technology have changed the world tremendously and countries that excel in the sector become powerful players in the economy of the world."
"Innovation is the primary driver of technological growth and living standards," the Vice-Chancellor of the university, Professor Ihron Rensburg said, adding that the University of Johannesburg partners with the Department of Science and Technology on project such as biomedical engineering research, where UJ engineers have developed advanced artificial intelligence techniques to diagnose tuberculosis and leukaemia and assist therapy in regenerative medicine. The techniques are also used elsewhere, for example, during the design and manufacture of an operational aircraft engine for Adept Technology, Rensburg said.
Running from 30 July to 4 August under the theme "The Role of Science & Technology in Economic Development", SAinfo
says, National Science Week 2012 celebrations will be conducted in collaboration with higher education institutions and science councils countrywide.
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