The Department of Science and Technology (DST), The Department of Sport & Recreation and Pambili Productions have partnered with the objective of demystifying science and technology for the youth through the medium of sport and recreation.
The Science and Technology in Sport Conference to be held on 16 September, alongside Insite 2008, the International Science, Innovation and Technology
Exhibition, will highlight the role Science and Technology plays in Sport, focusing on the youth and the 2010 World Cup.
Dr Phil Mjwara, director-general of the Department of Science and Technology, comments: "We have identified the need for science and technology to be clarified for the youth and recognise sport and recreation as a platform for this to be achieved.
"The objectives of the Science and Technology in Sports Conference align perfectly with Insite 2008, where the youth will be targeted in order to address the critical skills shortage in the science and technology sectors."
Xoliswa Sibeko, director-general of Sport & Recreation, adds: "There's no doubt that first-class sport scientific support makes the difference between winning on the playing field and ending up with no medals. South Africa is blessed with a tertiary education and, inter alia, a sport science infrastructure that is on par with the best in the world. However, we still see a gap between science and sport.
"Opportunities presented by the Science and Technology in Sports Conference, are therefore welcomed. As a department responsible for sport and recreation, we see our involvement as a necessary contribution to the development of sport in our country and hope that our sport people will take advantage of this opportunity.
"Our core interest in this endeavour is that science in sport must be inextricably linked to the national development programme of massifying sport participation among the previously disadvantaged communities. It should be one of the programmes linked to the 2010 FIFA World Cup legacy initiatives we will showcase to
the world in 2010."
Conceptualised and hosted by Pambili Productions, the Science and Technology in Sport Conference also aims to grow the culture of research in science and technology for sports in Africa, and export the Indigenous Knowledge Systems (IKS) in sports to foreign markets.
A draw card to the Science and Technology in Sports Conference and Insite 2008 will be the address by Professor Tim Noakes and Jake White on "Why Springboks won the Rugby World Cup 2007" and "Lessons for Bafana Bafana toward 2010". Prof Noakes will also be signing his book, co-written
with Bob Woolmer, "Discovering Cricket: The Art and Science of the Game".
Topics of discussion will include, among others, the Strategy on Uniting African Broadcasters for 2010 and Africa's Development at large; 2010: Migration of Technology – Telecommunications and Broadcast; 2010: Municipalities and Sports Technical Team; Gender Lens and introducing IKS into sports; as well as Creating indigenous models of producing winning sportsmen in South Africa.
Further value will be seen at INSITE 2008 by contributions from Dr Mike Bruton and Dr Tony Kirkbride; Head: CSIR Technology Centre. Dr Bruton will host demonstrations on the Science of Cricket, Football and Golf, while Dr Kirkbride will host a demonstration on the CSIR's Science & Technology Sports Research.