Technology Innovation Agency: Technology Stations
The Technology Stations Programme (TSP) was established to enable Universities of Technology (UoT) to provide technology development services to small and medium enterprises (SMEs). The Technology Stations (TS) provide innovative Science, Engineering and Technology (SET) solutions for complex engineering challenges within the relevant industrial sectors aimed at supporting government's socio-economic priorities.
There are 18 TS based at 11 Higher Education Institutions in South Africa, managed by the TSP Unit based in Pretoria at the Technology Innovation Agency (TIA) office. The TSP is a management and systems-wide support unit responsible for all TS across the country.
Procedure to follow to access the Technology Station Services:
1. Fill out a Client Capturing Form (CCF) – Must be completely filled and signed with the Company registration number.
*NB: This is a generic CCF. Customised CCF’s might differ slightly per Technology Station.
2. For start-up companies not registered with the Companies and Intellectual Property Commission (CIPC), an Identity Document (ID) Copy of one of the members should be submitted.
3. Copy of ID (if the client is an individual without a registered company) should be submitted.
4. Clients under the age of 18 are to be accompanied by a guardian or school teacher when using any services at the TS.
5. For large groups (I.e. schools or organisations) the entity representative will need to sign a CCF.
The mission of the Technology Station Programme (TSP) is to assist the Technology Stations (TS) and Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) in the core, by performing the following functions:
a) Ensure that funds allocated to the TSP have impact and are aligned with the TIA/DSI national strategic objectives and performance measures;
b) Reduce transaction and co-ordination costs of activities that involve or benefit multiple TSs to promote synergies and network benefits;
c) Monitor and evaluate the performance of TSs SME-related projects, and initiate interventions where required;
d) Identify opportunities to upgrade and/or expand the TSs high-end technology infrastructure;
e) Facilitate opportunities for technology knowledge transfer and innovation support to TIA's stakeholders; and
f) Promote the network of Technology Stations to other government programmes and ensure that the TS are aware of and participating in related national priorities and industry programmes.
The TS are well positioned to support industry, particularly SMEs and Higher Education Institutions. The TS activities offer an opportunity to bridge the gap between local suppliers and industry to take advantage of the recapitalization and expansion programmes by enhancing the competitiveness of local suppliers through technology improvement. The TS provides technology transfer infrastructure that plays a critical role in transferring technologies from Higher Education Institutions to technology users.
The Department of Science and Innovation (DSI) provides financial support through TIA, to Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) which house Technology Stations to provide technical support to SMEs in terms of solutions for services and training.