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Understanding Interactive Capabilites For Skills Development In Sectoral Systems Of Innovation: A Tentative Framework

27 February 2014
12:30 - 13:30

Speakers: Drs Glenda Kruss and Il-haam Petersen,  Education and Skills Development Unit, Human Sciences Research Council
Date: 27 February 2014
Time: 12H15 for 12h30  – 13H30  
Skills development is high on the South African policy agenda. There have been and are many current interventions to improve the quantity and quality of skills at all levels, particularly in sectors where shortages have been recognised.
In this presentation, rather than quantify shortages, or propose specific skills development initiatives, we focus on ways to encourage and facilitate more effective interaction between post school training organisations and the labour market.

The central concern is how to identify incentives, mechanisms and interventions that will encourage education and training organisations and industry to work together more effectively, to mutual benefit and to address national skills priorities.
Post-school education and training organisations with distinct historical trajectories respond in diverse ways to government policy and market imperatives. Similarly, different types of firms – whether multi-national corporations, large firms, or SMMEs, and whether in primary, secondary or tertiary sectors – respond in different ways to global and local shifts, new technologies and new knowledge. In short, firms or universities or colleges will not automatically adopt new skills policy interventions and regulations.
Hence, we need an understanding of the ways in which post-school education and training organisations interact with firms and labour market organisations to shape their core activities, in order to identify appropriate change mechanisms and strategies. There is no simple blueprint or tried and tested approach that is guaranteed to yield results in the South African context.
What we propose is a framework to analyse existing interaction and interactive capabilities in critical sectoral systems of innovation in South Africa, as a basis on which to proceed.
For firms and education and training organisations involved in a specific sector, such an evidence base can enhance understanding of effective interactions, organisational strategies, and blockages and gaps, in order to identify specific ways in which to enhance institutional capabilities.

Kindly RSVP by 25 February 2014

This seminar may be attended via video conference in Pretoria, Cape Town and KwaZulu-Natal. Details as below.  

Cape Town : HSRC, 12th Floor, Plein Park Building (Opposite Revenue Office), Plein Street, Cape Town. Contact Jean Witten, Tel (021) 4668004, Fax (021) 461 0299, or

Durban :  First floor HSRC board room, 750 Francois Road, Ntuthuko Junction, Pods 5 and 6, Cato Manor, Contact Ridhwaan Khan, Tel (031) 242 5400, cell: 083 788 2786 or

Pretoria : HSRC Video Conference, 1st floor HSRC Library Human Sciences Research Council, 134 Pretorius Street, Pretoria. Arlene Grossberg, Tel: (012) 302 2811, e-mail: