Technology Innovation Agency


About Technology Innovation Agency

The Technology Innovation Agency (TIA) is an entity of the Department of Science and Technology that was established for the purpose of enabling and supporting technological innovation across all sectors of the economy in order to deliver socioeconomic benefits for South Africa and enhance its global competitiveness.

These goals are achieved by supporting the development and commercialisation of research outputs from higher education institutions, science councils, public entities, private research institutions and enterprises and bringing them to market. The ultimate goal of TIA is to use South Africa’s science and technology base to develop new industries, create sustainable jobs and help diversify the economy.

In seeking to realise its mandate, TIA is positioned to be the link within the National System of Innovation (NSI) in a bid to enhance the country’s capacity to translate a greater proportion of local research and development (R&D) into commercial technology products and services.

The knowledge generated at various universities and public research institutions has not been reaching the market owing to a lack of funding instruments targeted at the development of technologies. The mission of TIA to exploit South Africa’s knowledge resources into sustainable socio-economic opportunities that lead to creation of knowledge based industries which in turn will result in companies becoming more competitive. The goal is to ensure that innovation ideas can be shaped into viable technology development projects and that the technology innovations are de-risked for commercialisation funding by our partners within the NSI. TIA has the following funding mechanisms: the Seed Fund, the Technology Development Fund and the Commercialisation Support Fund.

Key to the mandate of TIA is the delivery of socia-economic benefits for the country in line with Sustainable Development Goals. To this end, TIA provides support to innovative entrepreneurs.

In addition to the funding, TIA provides non-funding support geared at supporting innovators and SMMEs. These include Technology Stations (engineering services), Technology Platforms (life science/biotechnology), the Youth Technology Innovation Programme and Innovation Skills Development, Technology Innovation Cluster Programme, The Global Cleantech Innovation Programme.

Technology Stations and Platforms are situated at various Universities of Technology and each provides solutions to small and medium enterprises in specific technology areas. The Innovation Skills Development Programme in partnership with other key stakeholders in the NSI deliver programmes on critical thinking skills for interns, researchers, and the youth.

Key to the mandate of TIA is the delivery of socio-economic benefits for the country in line with Sustainable Development Goals. To this end, TIA provides support to innovative entrepreneurs.

The Fourth Industrial Revolution

Over the last 50 to 60 years South Africa has lost a great opportunity to look at how we can build on our stockpile of natural resources to transform our economy from a resource base to a knowledge base.

In the Fourth Industrial Revolution TIA looks at supporting technologies that can integrate various sectors of the economy to capitalize on the knowledge economy opportunities.

During the previous industrial revolutions, it took decades to establish the training systems and labour market institutions that were required to develop the major skills on a large scale. However, things are different now; the pace of change is simply rapid and both the public and private sector will have to change their approach to education, skills and employment.

As an organisation established, specifically to harness technology innovation to drive economic growth, TIA works with various partners within the NSI, playing the role of connector, facilitator, funder and enabler. TIA, therefore, seeks to drive the overall thinking within the system towards gearing enterprises for the Fourth Industrial Revolution. TIA supports creative enterprises whose innovations will have not only economic impact, but also impact the lives of the many South Africans who cannot access critical products and services.

Contact Details

4th Floor Black River Business Park, Fir Road, Observatory, Cape Town, 7925

Tel: +27 (0)21 422 3780


From the Pressroom