This research line encapsulates three areas: (a) Innovation for Inclusive Development (I4ID), (b) the contribution of universities to (regional) innovation and entrepreneurship, and (c) the analysis and evaluation of technology platforms (INNOVATION PLATFORMS).

The first focus area (I4ID) addresses questions such as the following:

  • How can public sector actors contribute to creating inclusive innovation systems that will effectively develop, adopt and diffuse new technologies towards providing inclusive growth and development?
  • What will those systems look like, and how can one evaluate the performance of these systems?
  • How can we measure and evaluate impact of inclusive innovation projects?
  • What frameworks and conceptual tools exist to support the evaluation of I4ID programmes in Southern Africa?

The second focus is on the contribution of universities to innovation and entrepreneurship. Three projects are currently being pursued under this heading: the role of universities in creating technology based research enterprises, the contribution of universities to regional innovation systems (NEW) and (at the individual level) how doctoral graduates transfer knowledge and expertise to industry and the business sectors.

The third focus (INNOVATION PLATFORMS) is predominantly pursed by Sara Grobbelaar and her colleagues and students in Industrial Engineering at SU and currently includes various projects on technology platforms in public healthcare and education (ICT’s and energy use)

  • What are functioning models for innovation platforms and specifically the role of various actors in establishing and operating such platforms?
  • How is capacity development learning and scaling managed?
  • How is evaluation of the development of these frameworks and resulting innovations managed?