The Minister of Higher Education, Science and Innovation, Blade Nzimande, welcomed Africa's recently launched science diplomacy initiative aimed at ensuring that world-class scientific input is used to respond to key societal challenges on the continent.


The Department's Deputy Director-General for International Resources and Cooperation, Mr Daan du Toit, delivered the Minister's message at the launch of the Science Diplomacy Capital for Africa (SDCfA) in Pretoria last week.


The Minister said the initiative will ensure the very best of South African and African scientific input and advice is harnessed to enrich diplomacy’s response to the key societal challenges which includes pandemic disease, energy security or climate change, and most critically the triple challenge of poverty, unemployment and inequality. 


"The initiative will promote and assist the formation of enhanced science diplomacy partnerships, which will provide a platform to leverage the expertise and resources of our international partners to conceptualize and initiate new cooperation programmes, which will deliver real impact, with the active participation of historically disadvantaged institutions and individuals,” said Minister Nzimande.


The Minister said that the Science Diplomacy Capital for Africa initiative will unleash the tremendous soft power of science, which knows no borders, and which unites and not divides, to reinforce global solidarity and a commitment to multilateralism. 


The SDCfA, an initiative of the Department of Science and Innovation (DSI) and the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR), will promote science collaboration across Africa and beyond, leveraging and connecting technology innovation with humanity.


Over 100 diplomatic missions and many leading research and academic institutions are located in the City of Tshwane, which is therefore perfectly positioned to host the SDCfA. The initiative will facilitate networking between the diplomatic community in Africa and abroad to address common problems.


The SDCfA will see the implementation of activities in promotion, networking and facilitation. Climate change and shared infrastructure are two of the areas in which collaboration is likely.


Given the challenges facing the world – including Covid-19, global warming, major natural disasters and food insecurity – delegates agreed to explore and contribute to addressing important global issues jointly.


For more information, please visit or contact David Mandaha at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or 072 126 8910, or Veronica Mohapeloa at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..


Issued by:

Ministry of Higher Education, Science and Innovation
Meiring Naude Road
Enquiries: Ishmael Mnisi 0660378859


© 2021 Department of Science and Innovations . All Rights Reserved.