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Change the world


Under the captivating theme "IP and the SDGs: Building our common future with innovation and creativity," Mandela University’s Innovation Office in collaboration with the Propella Business Incubator and Spoor & Fisher recently hosted the celebration of World Intellectual Property Day (WIPD). 


Speakers included Dr Anathi Njokweni from the University’s Innovation Office, Masakhane Mlamla, Propella Business Incubator Manager, Vanessa van Coppenhagen of Spoor & Fisher and Professor Hendrik Lloyd, Executive Dean of the Faculty of Business and Economic Sciences; and The Fibre Optics team.  

The event highlighted the vital role of intellectual property in shaping our collective tomorrow.

World Intellectual Property Day raises awareness about intellectual property rights, while highlighting the vast creativity and socio-economic impact of creators and innovators worldwide.

In the ever-evolving landscape of sustainable development, innovation stands as a cornerstone, with the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) offering a robust framework to tackle global challenges across dimensions.

The Vertical and Take-off Landing Aircraft; Robert Bosch of Rubber Nano Products; goodie bags and pre-competition winners.   

Students and staff participated lively to the enlightening presentations from industry experts, who shared their knowledge about the importance of Intellectual property and how to prevent others from copying your intellectual property.

Thabelo Mohlala of Mechatech engineering solutions; Propella and MechaTEch exhibition stands; The Hot Box team; and Vanessa van Coppenhaggen of Spoor & Fisher. 

Highlighting the day's proceedings were inspiring success stories, entrepreneurial journeys and the beginning of successful ventures.

Among these were Robert Bosch, the Technical Director of Rubber Nano Products (Pty) Ltd, who shared insights on how intellectual property has propelled his business, which specialises in chemically specific activators for rubber vulcanisation accelerators.

Thabelo Mohlala, CEO of Mechatech Engineering Solutions, shared his company's journey as a leader in cement 3D-printing technology. He emphasised their mission to provide innovative engineering solutions.

Equally captivating were the stories from the Fibre Optic and Hot Box group, sharing their journey from winning the postgraduate student competition at the research week hosted by the Innovation Office, and how they have used their winning to further develop their products.

The event's foyer buzzed with exhibitions, with an array of innovators showcasing their cutting-edge creations. Notable exhibits included the Vertical and Take-off Landing Aircraft from the University's Mechatronics Department, alongside the transformative initiatives supported by Propella Business Incubator.

Propella is a collaboration between the University, the Industrial Development Corporation, and the private sector, that supports innovators, especially in the renewable energy, energy efficiency and related technologies, advanced manufacturing and supply chain optimisation.

Prior to the event, an exciting competition unfolded, and the winners were announced on the day, each winner walked away with R500 Takealot vouchers, courtesy of Spoor & Fisher.

Contact information
Ms Elma de Koker
Internal Communication Practitioner
Tel: 041-504 2160