The Climate Innovation Centre (CIC) is launched in South Africa


The Innovation Hub Management Company (TIHMC) through its Climate Innovation Centre (CIC) in partnership with the World Bank’s InfoDev hosted a two day conference, CIC Inaugural Conference. This conference took place on 25-26 March 2015 at the Innovation Hub. As Africa’s first internationally accredited Science and Technology Park, we know the Innovation Hub to be one of the most progressive hubs in Africa based on their mandate of building a strong economic growth foundation, especially when coming to innovative companies in SA.  

The objective of the conference was to formally launch the South African CIC and foster relationships between SMME’s and potential clients, suppliers and other stakeholders. The CIC seeks to consolidate Gauteng’s position as a leader in creating sustainable climate change mitigation and adaptation pathways, in support of the provincial and national governments’ climate change commitments.

Speaking to Nunnovation, Mr Fredel Jacobs the Acting General Manager of CIC South Africa shared and highlighted some important information about the conference:

Mr. Fredell Jacobs at the CIC conference gala dinner at The Innovation Hub
Mr. Fredell Jacobs at the CIC conference gala dinner at The Innovation Hub

N: What was the impact and outcome of the conference?

FJ: I believe the conference was well received by industry, government and academia in terms of participants. We managed to cover the central theme around the inclusivity and sustainable investment around green technology. It was useful to also have all the other CIC’s here because it has allowed us to see best practices from an outcomes perspective, that has been our main focus. To get a blueprint on how to roll out the Climate Innovation Centre in South Africa, with some sort of alignment to what’s happening globally.

N: Were there any important issues that were raised that you feel are worth sharing?

FJ: The big elephant in the room is about the quality of investment cases in this industry. The fact that there is no shortage of funding, and that has been made pretty evident by all the participants who were there, especially the guys from the various financial institutions. They have shown that there is an abundance of capital available for green investment and green projects.

N: The delegates that were present at the conference are believed to have been from across the globe, which countries were represented?

FJ: Kenya, Vietnam, Ethiopia, Ghana, Carribean, Washington, India. Well, that’s probably it.

N: An overview of the entire conference Mr Jacobs?

FJ: For me actually, its all about what happens after the conference that matters most. Things like what do we go and implement, what do we go and do on the ground. But as the hosts of the conference, I believe there can always be some room for improvement next time, but overall, we had a good conference.

The conference hosted a number of delegates from across the globe and a number of conversations about the growth and development of the green economy were held and exhibitors came and showcased some of their innovative technologies. We await to see what the SA CIC team will do moving forward, especially with all the knowledge gathered from this massive conference.

Salute South Africa for taking part in the Climate Innovation Centre and hope that a lot of great and innovative ideas emanate from this new partnership.