On 3 February 2021, Siemens and the CSIR signed a Memorandum of Understanding to foster technical vocational education and training (TVET). This relates to key technical and digital skills to contribute to the employability of the local workforce and enhancement of the quality of job profiles.
Through this partnership, Siemens will also be part of the South Africa Centre for the Fourth Industrial Revolution (C4IR-SA) and will assist in positioning the C4IR-SA as a thought leader in innovative digital technologies. The C4IR-SA, hosted at the CSIR, aims to mobilise public-private partnerships to co-create enabling governance frameworks in order to optimally harness the potential of 4IR technologies such as artificial intelligence, blockchain and big data for societal advancement.
The cooperation will also focus on piloting digital industry solutions in key sectors such as food and beverage, water, cyber security and manufacturing; the solutions are for smart and sustainable cities that are geared towards better and more equitable livelihoods for all South Africans.
CSIR CEO Dr Thulani Dlamini said the partnership with Siemens forms part of the CSIR strategy to foster partnerships with the private and public sectors to respond to the needs of industry in order to improve the lives of South Africans.
“We are very pleased to join hands with Siemens in this huge and compelling task of ensuring that our country does not miss out on the gains of the 4IR. The CSIR strategy requires us to work very closely with the private sector to address the needs of industry and society, and to use science and technology to fast track the digital skills of the future. To achieve this, the organisation is leveraging emerging technologies, especially those rooted in the 4IR, as well as its current capabilities and those of its partners,” said Dr Dlamini.
Siemens Southern and Eastern Africa CEO, Sabine Dall’Omo, said the accelerated digitalisation caused by the Corona virus pandemic requires companies and society to respond faster and more efficiently to changing market demands, especially in times of crisis. “Siemens is proud to partner with the CSIR in this initiative and is ready to deliver on the fourth industrial revolution roadmap. Our goal is to make sure that while we focus on continuously adapting, we’re also contributing to uplifting and building a sustainable economy,” said Dall’Omo.
To align with the World Economic Forum’s (WEF) network of centres, Siemens has developed a comprehensive South Africa 4IR roadmap, which will empower the country to seize the opportunities of digitalisation and especially Industry 4.0 solutions, while upskilling the South African workforce and creating new high-quality jobs.
The business environment is becoming more entrenched in the constant technological evolution and the industrial sector has been gradually integrating the use of automation and connectivity in its everyday business practices. This involves the digital transformation of industry to ensure that industrial processes become more adaptable, flexible and efficient, allowing businesses to meet customers’ needs in the most reliable way.”’ Dall’Omo said.