The Office of Digital Advantage (ODA) is delighted to announce the approval of SANBA by the DST/ODA Steering Committee on the 28th of November 2018. The ODA, which is the Department of Science and Technology’s ICT RDI Roadmap’s implementing and support program, initially hosted a workshop titled “Blockchain beyond the cryptocurrencies: Creating opportunities for socio-economic development” in July 2018 as well as the recent multi-stakeholder consultative workshops on the 12-13 November 2018. The SANBA (South African National Blockchain Alliance) concept was designed in collaboration with the South African blockchain community, consisting of input from government, academia, business, startups and civil society. SANBA aims to connect the players in the blockchain ecosystem in South Africa, in order to create a pre-competitive space for research, development and innovation in order to catalyse blockchain adoption in the country. The responsibility of the Department of Science and Technology within SANBA will be to drive a strong focus on academic research and accelerated skills development. The ODA will be the secretariat for SANBA.
Next steps: The refinement of the SANBA strategy, operating and business models, and the launch of the SANBA use cases and/or projects by April 2019 (new financial year).
GIF funding opportunity for Blockchain projects
The Department of Science and Technology has a partnership agreement with the Global Innovation Fund (GIF – http://globalInnovation.fund). GIF members will be visiting South Africa during 5 – 14 December 2018. As one of the first SANBA initiatives, the SA Blockchain community is thereby invited to submit project ideas for potential funding by GIF. The Fund is particularly looking to fund projects with high social impact. Startups, here’s an opportunity!
Interested parties may submit the list of initiatives for funding consideration to ODA@csir.co.za and SANationalBlockchainAlliance@gmail.com. Provide the company name, contact person, and the description of the Blockchain idea/concept/initiative.
The ODA team will then screen the list of initiatives/concepts, discuss with the GIF team and invite presentations that GIF may consider for funding. The GIF team will be in Pretoria between the 05 – 14 December 2018.