The Role of a Professional Registering Body in a National System of Innovation

Facilitator: Prof Robin Crewe, South African Council for Natural Scientific Professions

Presenter:  Dr Gerda Botha, South African Council for Natural Scientific Professions

Presenter:  Dr Pradish  Rampersadh, South African Council for Natural Scientific Professions


South African Council of Natural Scientific Professions (SACNASP) is a statutory council responsible for the registration of professional scientists in different fields of practices. The purpose of the discussion is for SACNASP to engage with key stakeholders to ensure that its future activities serve the dual function of providing for the interests of its scientists in maintaining their credibility and standing in their professions. It is also important to expand on the role that SACNASP and its voluntary associations (VA) can play in developing the national systems of innovation (NSI) strategy. SACNASP has been engaging with VAs to outline the expectations of the Council in terms of professional registration. It is therefore crucial to explore the interactions of the VAs with both the Council  and other external bodies such as South African Qualifications Authority (SAQA), Council On Higher Education (CHE) and the National Research Foundation (NRF). The engagement of SACNASP and the VAs in the public consultations on the proposed 2017 Science, Technology and Innovation (STI) White paper should also be explored to define the role of professional scientists within the NSI and to determine the role they play in the implementation of the goals proposed. The key deliverable of this platform is to provide an ideal opportunity to highlight the role that a professional registering body can play in the interests of its scientists and in the broader context of its contribution to the society.

Professor Robin Crewe, InterAcademy Partnership (IAP)

Prof. Robin Crewe is a Senior Research Fellow in the Centre for the Advancement of Scholarship and a member of the Social Insects Research Group in the Department of Zoology and Entomology at the University of Pretoria. He has worked for many years on chemical communication and social organization in a variety of social insects. His current research is on honey bee social organization and population dynamics with a view to ensuring that this biological resource can be used sustainably into the future for the supply of bee products and to provide pollination services.  He is a member of the Academy of Science of South Africa, a fellow of the African Academy of Science, and a fellow of the World Academy of Science. He received the Gold Medal of the Academy of Science of South Africa in 2013. He is a past president of the Academy of Science of South Africa and of the Network of African Science Academies (NASAC) and currently serves on the councils of NASAC and the World Academy of Science (TWAS). He is co-chairing the IAP study “Harnessing Science, Engineering and Medicine to address Africa’s challenges”.