August 5 - August 12

Launch Saturday, 5 August 2017
at Nelson Mandela University’s
Missionvale Campus


National Science Week (NSW), an initiative of the Department of Science and Technology (DST,) is a countrywide celebration of science involving various stakeholders and/or role players conducting science-based activities during the week.

National Science Week is run in all nine provinces simultaneously at multiple sites per province. SAASTA has been appointed by the DST as the implementing agency and play the role of the National Project Manager for the National Science Week.

Each year a different theme is chosen and activities are offered around the theme to the target audiences. The theme for 2017 is Advancing Science Tourism”.

The launch of National Science Week will take place on Saturday, 5 August 2017 at Nelson Mandela University’s Missionvale Campus.

The Faculty of Science will be driving the events leading up to the launch and during the focus week which will take place from 7-12 August in three districts – Nelson Mandela Bay (EC), Chris Hani(EC), and Eden District (Southern Cape).


National Science Week (NSW), an initiative of the Department of Science and Technology (DST), is a countrywide celebration of STEMI involving various stakeholders and/or role players conducting STEMI activities during the declared week.  NSW takes place simultaneously in multiple sites in all the nine provinces.  

NRF/SAASTA has been appointed by the DST as the implementing agency and play the role of coordinating and managing activities pertaining to the project.

Each year a different theme is chosen and activities are offered around these themes to the target participants. The NSW is a mass participation initiative within the context of the Science Engagement Strategy and its objectives are the following:

  • to popularize science to the broader South African society,
  • to serve as a vehicle for showcasing local innovations in science and technology, and the leadership role of the DST and other government departments in enabling research, development and innovation,
  • to make Science Technology Engineering Mathematics and Innovation (STEMI) appealing to learners, such that they consider STEMI as preferable career options, and
  • to familiarise targeted participants with the science linked to areas in which South Africa has knowledge and/or geographic advantage so as to contribute in making them informed and critically engaged citizens.


To contribute to the development of a society that is knowledgeable about science, critically engaged and scientifically literate (that is, the primary goal of the Science Engagement Strategy).



The theme of the National Science week 2017 is “ SCIENCE FOR TOURISM'


Schools/Departments/Entities in the Faculty of Science are expected to do the following:

  • Handle the necessary logistical arrangements to create an enabling environment of the celebration of the NSW 2017 to take place in the geographic area(s) in which they will be operating.  
  • Secure a venue that is accessible, safe and secure by complying with the standard safety and security requirements pertaining to organised industry/manufacturing site visits and Research Facility visits.
  • Where transport is required for target participants to ensure their access to organised NSW celebrations, transport arrangements should be handled in conformance with the enabling regulations, including satisfying all the indemnification requirements and road worthiness of the transport used.
  • Embark on means and strategies to attract learners, students, general public, media, scientists and other target participants to be part of the organised NSW activities.
  • Where necessary depending on the targeted audiences and time that will be spent on the activity/ies provide catering for target participants in the NSW activities.
  • Establish a technical programme of science, technology, engineering, mathematics and innovation activities (STEMI) that will be conducted during the NSW 2017.  Grant holders are expected to carry out research in order to emerge with creative and innovative approaches and activities to celebrate the NSW. 

Such STEMI approaches activities should:

  • Popularise STEMI as attractive, stimulating, exciting and relevant to daily life to the benefit of all sections of the population.
  • Use STEMI as recreational tool, including but not limited to games, funny science jokes, concerts, communicating STEMI through arts, musical genres and sky viewing.
  • Create awareness of astronomy, marine sciences, palaeoscience, space science and technology, indigenous knowledge systems, biodiversity, biotechnology, energy.
  • Create platforms and opportunities for the public to demonstrate the role of social sciences in understanding the impact of STEMI in people’s lives.
  • Stimulate interest in and create awareness in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) careers, including STEM research careers.
  • Create platforms and opportunities for the non-scientific community to engage with the scientific community, and engagement within the scientific community.  Such engagements could be through physical contact in seminars, workshops, lectures, science caf├ęs, debates etc. and/or virtual using online means and relevant media platforms.
  • Create space for budding and aspirant scientists within the schooling and university systems to showcase their STEMI projects and communicate them to their peers and the general public
  1. Demonstrate the contribution of STEMI to sustainable development and improved quality of life.  These will include, but not limited to the protection of the South African biodiversity heritage.
  2. The understanding and managing the possible consequences of climate change and environmental degradation.
  3. The way in which STEMI enhances the key sectors of the South African economy, namely, manufacturing, retail, financial services, communications, mining, agriculture and tourism.
  4. The contribution of STEMI to citizens’ right to education, a clean environment, of access to health care, food water, social security, as well as safety and security.
  5. Contribution of STEMI to solving the triple challenges of poverty, unemployment and inequality.
  • Create awareness of the South African inventions and discoveries that changed the world.


In order to facilitate service delivery, South Africa is demarcated into municipal boundaries, which are service delivery boundaries. In an attempt to achieve an even geographic spread of the NSW activities, Faculty of Science should indicate the district municipalities and/or metros under which the area in which the NSW activities will be held.

Districts being covered are rated by geographic position in terms of accessibility and previous coverage.



  • Selected/appropriate educational resource materials should be provided during National Science Week 2017.
  • Entities who develop any resource or material for NSW, that resource will be the product of Science Education, Outreach, and Communication Program
  • Materials that entities print should be sent to Faculty of Science marketing for approval prior distribution


Faculty of Science marketing team will host a briefing sessions during May and June.