SARIMA will continue to implement in 2019 the Local Technology Transfer Exchange (LTTE) programme which was piloted two years ago, with funding support from the South African Department of Science and Technology (DST). The programme was designed to support and fast-track the development of junior-level Technology Transfer staff.
The overall objectives of the programme were to support the strengthening of technology transfer capacity in South Africa, promote a culture of sharing and knowledge exchange as well as provide a mechanism to foster partnerships and collaborations between South African institutions in the innovation ecosystem. The first cohort consisted of four individuals, two of which were from Historically Disadvantaged Institutions. The feedback received from this cohort suggested that much learning and value can be derived from spending time with other local TTOs. Since being on the programme, one of the four applicants has advanced in her career – moving from a technology transfer officer to a technology transfer manager position. Another has transitioned from an academic role to that of an innovation manager. Ms Fredda Makato, who was hosted by Innovus at Stellenbosch University stated that “The local exchange program enlightened me to realise that the challenges faced in South African technology transfer space, can be solved through financial support by government and the university.”