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CSIR Meraka Institute Strategic and operational plan Marlien Herselman 17 May 2011.

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Presentation on theme: "CSIR Meraka Institute Strategic and operational plan Marlien Herselman 17 May 2011."— Presentation transcript:

1 CSIR Meraka Institute Strategic and operational plan Marlien Herselman 17 May 2011

2 Slide 2 of 21 Presentation Outline Some relevant problems Meraka vision Meraka Value proposition Macro structure Meraka's research competencies and cyberinfrastructure initiatives to enable our vision Strategy for securing R&D contract income Key challenges and priorities in the functional domains Budget Other strategic issues

3 Slide 3 of 21 Some relevant problems Poverty – Income gap – 1.2 billion people (388 million in Africa) live on less than $1 a day – Lack of assets – low productivity, missed opportunities, weak health and low level of skills – Vulnerability – external shocks, internal conflicts – Powerlessness – no voice nor bargaining power Universal primary education – In Africa, 32 million out of school, 59% will never enrol Functional Illiteracy – 38% of the adult population in sub-Saharan Africa, or 153 million adults, lack the basic literacy and numeracy skills needed in everyday life Access to knowledge – 51% of South African households own no leisure books – 7% of public schools in South Africa have functional libraries of any kind Cost of communication – Europeans spend little more than 1% of their average monthly income on mobile communication, Africans spend 17.7% Barriers to inclusion – 650 million persons with disabilities - Ban Ki-moon

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5 It is our belief that one of the greatest opportunities is to leverage the human potential and creativity of African people through sustainable development towards an information society

6 Slide 6 of 21 VISION Our vision is that Meraka will be recognised for the contribution that its research, development and innovation (R,D&I) in information and communications technology (ICT) and cyberinfrastructure has made in accelerating South Africa's development towards an information society, where everyone can create, access, utilise and share information and knowledge to their individual and collective benefit..

7 Slide 7 of 21 Value Proposition Meraka strives to contribute to South Africa’s development towards an advanced information society by addressing key issues with broad societal impact through ICT, viz: Enabling ICT readiness – by focusing on extending both infrastructure and access through researching, developing, demonstrating and building broadband infrastructures, and on ensuring inclusive access Promoting ICT use - through R&D and innovation that increases ICT intensity and pervasiveness in society Contributing to ICT capabilities and skills – by enabling advanced human capital development

8 Slide 8 of 21 Meraka achieves its value proposition through: Its ability to undertake multi-disciplinary projects A strong and growing profile as the foremost ICT R,D&I institution in Africa, with competence in the following areas: – integrative systems, platforms and technologies – wireless networking and media – human language technologies – knowledge engineering and representation – earth observation science Its expertise in building national cyberinfrastructure Extensive networks and strategic partnerships

9 Slide 9 of 21 Competence Areas, Research Groups and Cross-cutting Initiatives Centre for High Performance Computing SANReN Very Large Scale databases SAGrid Integrative Platforms and technologies Living Labs Real-Time Video Coding Wireless Mesh Networks Advanced Sensor Networks (emerging area) ICT for Earth Observation Remote Sensing Research Speech technologies Speech Applications Integrative systems, platforms and technologies Integrative Platforms and technologies Living Labs Next Generation ICT and Mobile Architectures Internet of Things Engineering Group Trusted Network Infrastructures and Platforms Living Labs and methodologies (including Crime Prevention) Cyber- infrastructure Networks and Media Earth Observation Science and Information Technology Human language technologies & Knowledge technologies Knowledge Representation & Reasoning Enterprise Knowledge Engineering and Management ICT for Service delivery ICT for Rural development Education/Mobile learning ICT for Health

10 Slide 10 of 21 Networks and Media Research group priorities Wireless Mesh Networks – Strengthen cognitive radio and spectrum management capacity with WITS and Georgia Institute of Technology Real time video coding - Commercialisation and second round funding for the ARTIST project Advanced Sensor Networks – Smartgrid and mining applications in collaboration with University of Pretoria, Georgia Institute of Technology and other CSIR units Competence area level initiatives Further the relationships with Global Research Alliance Institutes 1)Fraunhofer HHI - joint research on P2P media protocol and low rate extensions to the international H.263 video coding standard for developing countries 2)Fraunhofer FOKUS, VTT and TNO joint research in converged Infrastructure for Emerging Regions. Further relationship with Wireless World Research Forum and IEEE Communications society through leading the work groups in Wireless technologies for emerging regions.

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12 Slide 12 of 21 Human Language and Knowledge Technologies Human Language Technologies Speech technologies for multilingual, telephone-based information service for DBE Automatic speech recognition systems with speaker- independent accuracies > 50% for vocabularies of words Demonstrably more natural-sounding text-to-speech systems incorporating natural language processing Broadband data repository for 11 official languages Work with Google on languages outside 40 priority languages Enterprise Knowledge Engineering and Management Enterprise engineering platform for health care delivery, in collaboration with Built Environment and Biosciences Adapt everyday communication technologies (e.g. low-end mobile phones) to capture indigenous knowledge in collaboration with NMMU Knowledge Representation & Reasoning Centre for Artificial Intelligence with UKZN Collaboration with UKZN, NRE and SANBI on Biodiversity Information Management System

13 Slide 13 of 21 Integrative systems, platforms & technologies Build new research groups Next Generation ICT and Mobile Architectures Dependable scalable robust future proof architectures and solutions to enable an inclusive information society Internet of Things Engineering Group Large scale, smart/optimal solutions in the Cloud which integrates physical objects (“smart devices”, sensors and tags) with the Internet. Trusted Network Infrastructures and Platforms Network infrastructures with built-in security, dependability and privacy to support complex distributed systems and transactions. Living Labs and methodologies User driven innovation and real world validation of technology Competence area level initiatives Indigenous Knowledge Systems treasure hub for communal socio- economic development with DST Establish mobile applications laboratory in collaboration with Innovation hub supported by Infodev, DST and Nokia Converged (IP, Voice & Mobile) Communication Mobile Platform (e.g For Presidential Hotline) Tshwane Smart City - linking sensors, networks, data and processing through Internet of Things, with Innovation Hub and municipality

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16 Securing R&D contract income Government Sector - support strategic partners and explore contract R&D opportunities – Top strategic partners: DST, DoC, DAC, DoH, USAASA, SITA, DBE, COGTA, DRDLR, DTI, ICASA African continent - increase partnerships for capacity building, HCD and research by aligning with CSIR and DST initiatives and prioritised countries, and by exploring new contract R&D opportunities – Explore donor/funding agency and AU opportunities for coordination, networking, research and HCD as well as contract R&D funding – CSIR ICT Flagship with Meraka playing a leading role, supporting major initiatives, including South Africa’s SKA bid

17 Slide 17 of 21 Securing R&D contract income International - diversify international collaboration and increase collaborative R&D and HCD – Donors, foundations and multilateral agencies – Bilateral agreements as framework with a focus on the EU and emerging markets in Asia and South America – Competitive R&D through especially the EU FP7 calls for proposals. Industry / Private sector- To grow and diversify sales to industry by seeking R&D partnerships and contracts, and by aligning with government’s priority to increase competitiveness through innovation – Initial focus is on the ICT and telecoms sectors, including mobile, fixed- line and Internet service providers – Long haul model

18 Key challenges and priorities in the functional domains HR/HCD Transformation Leadership Pipeline Leadership development for newly appointed CAMs, RGLs and other managers Strategic research management Meraka Research Strategy ICT R&D and Innovation strategy implementation roadmap Meraka alignment to and participation in CSIR RIAs Outcomes / Technology Transfer Securing and protecting of intellectual assets Building a patent portfolio Increasing commercial licensing of technology – short-term focus on real-time video coding IP cluster / ARTIST project

19 Slide 19 of 21 Other Strategic Issues Marginal and emerging research groups – “Stage gate” maturity process Cyberinfrastructure structure – Working document with discussion of key issues and options developed (Wright, Cloete & Sithole) – Refinement through discussions with international groups (Netherlands, Finland, Norway) – Next step: discussion with CSIR Executive & DST Funding / Business model – Competence area leadership – Articulate and package offerings – Optimise ratio between R&D capacity and management and support overhead

20 Thank you!


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