Prof Tinyiko Maluleke, Vice-Chancellor and Principal with other attendees at the launch of SA-Canada Higher Education and Science Council Network.
Represented by its Vice-Chancellor and Principal, Professor Tinyiko Maluleke, the Tshwane University of Technology (TUT) was a proud and active participant in this giant step in the purposeful and structured internationalisation of the South African Higher Education Sector. Ten other South African vice-chancellors and numerous other senior executives were present.
Together with USAf, NRF, ARC and the Medical Research Council, no less than 21 South African universities were represented.
In the view of the TUT Vice-Chancellor, Professor Maluleke, “the young and dynamic South African national system of innovation has much to benefit from linkages with such a mature and high-performing system of innovation as that of Canada. The South African higher education sector could not have chosen a better peer than the Canadian higher education sector”.
Central to the discussions during the launch of the Canada Higher Education and Science Councils Network was the question of how the research and education institutions from both countries may contribute to the solving of global problems threatening both humanity and the earth. In this regard, climate change, environmental sustainability, food security and the impact of the fourth industrial revolution were highlighted.
Equally important among the institutions was the question of training a generation of students who would become global citizens, ready for the changing future of work, in this era of artificial intelligence. In terms of the nature of collaborative relations between the two countries, both sides were committed to building equal relationships of partnership in which students and staff (from both countries) can participate meaningfully. TUT is already following through and pursuing collaboration with several Canadian institutions with a strong focus on artificial intelligence and the future of work.
As part of their itinerary in Toronto, the delegates were taken on guided tours of selected institutions and research agencies on the outskirts of Canada. On 27 April, the South African Consul-General, Ms Thandiwe Fadane, hosted the delegates to a celebration of the South African Freedom Day on the magnificent premises of the Legislative Assembly of Ontario.