SAIMI’s primary purpose is to facilitate linkages and collaboration amongst role players in maritime research, education and training in South Africa, and with similar institutes in Africa. The Institute plays a much-needed linking role between industry and educational institutions, with the aim to strengthen maritime education and research through facilitating co-ordination and co-operation among education providers.
It is a multi-disciplinary, multi-stakeholder institute active in all aspects of the maritime field, including shipping, harbours, manufacturing and construction, sustainability, environment, law, and marine tourism. SAIMI also links with industry and academia in marine and coastal sciences.
The national oceans economy development strategy and programme remains at the core of SAIMI’s strategic agenda and has been adopted as the main theme for the institute over the next 20-year strategic horizon. In this role, SAIMI provides strategic support to the oceans development strategy and programme through:
Skills Development and Capacity Building
SAIMI has been appointed as the implementing agency for skills development and capacity building by the Department of Higher Education and Training, with the responsibility of supporting, coordinating, facilitating and implementing the multi stakeholder initiatives under this cross cutting focus area. As such, the following Operation Phakisa Skills Initiative Working Groups have tasked SAIMI with the role of supporting, coordinating and facilitating the implementation of work:
* Marine Protection and Governance;
* Marine Transport;
* Marine Manufacturing;
* Small Harbour Development;
* Coastal Marine and Tourism; and
* Oil and Gas.
These working groups are responsible for identifying challenges and designing solutions for delivering the skills targets of Operation Phakisa, in order to support SAIMI in developing a comprehensive national maritime skills development strategy and implementation plan for the DHET.
Stakeholder Partnerships and Collaboration
SAIMI was also tasked with facilitating stakeholder collaboration and partnerships with all relevant sector skills, education and training stakeholders, businesses, industry, related associations and formations. This partnership is channeled through strong collaborations with national Sector Education Training Authorities (SETA) in marine manufacturing and engineering, transport, agriculture, energy, water, culture, arts, tourism, hospitality and sports, to support the oceans economy initiatives.
National Seafarer Development Programme
SAIMI has also been tasked with managing the National Seafarer Development Programme (NSDP), which provides South African students with the practical training and sea-time experience required for them to meet the requirements of their qualifications. It enables them to work as seafarers on merchant shipping lines. The programme involves establishing relationships with South African and International shipping companies to secure scarce training opportunities on board their merchant ships for our Seafarers. The ultimate outcome sought by the programme is to succeed in having more South African seafarers qualifying and securing employment opportunities on the international merchant fleet.
Research, Development Innovation, Knowledge Management
A national vision and roadmap for maritime research, innovation and knowledge management was developed through a series of multi stakeholder consultations, which included the maritime industry, academia, government, state owned entities and regulators. The objective of the roadmap is to support and enable the sustainable development of the oceans economy. It identifies eight key objectives, which, together with a set of core research, innovation and knowledge management-focused actions, chart a course to maritime excellence in South Africa. It sets the national strategic agenda for research, innovation and knowledge management and identifies the priority areas to enable the achievement of South Africa’s oceans economy outcomes. The roadmap vision and mission statements are as follows:
* Vision: “Unlocking South Africa’s maritime potential through research, development and innovation”.
* Mission: “By 2030 South Africa is globally recognised as a maritime nation”.
SAIMI’s strategic role and focus areas in regards to research, development and innovation are:
* To advocate and promote the strategic role of maritime research as an enabler of development
* To formalise and support a national, but internationally linked, maritime research network in partnership with all stakeholders,
* To communicate, connect and bring visibility to relevant areas of maritime research and innovation,
* To support and establish partnerships across South Africa, Africa and the world,
* To raise funding and where possible fund relevant and priority maritime research projects and resources.
SAIMI has adopted the roadmap as a core pillar on our strategic agenda over the next 20 years and will remain committed to enhancing our research and innovation capacity and fulfilling our tactical role. We will pursue this through strong partnerships across the national and international research network, to conduct strategically relevant research towards innovative and breakthrough results. It is, however, essential to note that the roadmap remains unfunded and without a lead implementing agent, notwithstanding its significance as a main ingredient towards building sustainable competitive advantages and long term success for South Africa. The unresolved approach to implementing the roadmap may put the vision and targeted strategic outcomes at risk.
SAIMI’s scope and area of focus can be defined as the oceans sector, which involves the key aspects of ocean governance, stewardship and the socio economic value derived from ocean based activities. These activities relate to fishing, recreation and leisure, commerce, trade and transportation, extraction of energy and minerals resources among many conventional and emerging new uses of the oceans. The oceans sector is comprised of the following broad areas of focus for SAIMI, which it will place a strategic emphasis on in supporting the development of South Africa’s oceans economy, especially in the areas of advocating and supporting effective policy, education, skills development, training, research, innovation, knowledge management :and collaborative models of development:
* Ports and Harbour infrastructure
* Energy and Mineral Resources
* Fishing and Aquaculture
* Commerce and Trade
* Research, Technology and Knowledge
* Policy, Governance and Stewardship
* Leisure, Tourism and Recreation
The purpose of SAIMI is to be South Africa’s catalyst and platform for collaboration towards the sustainable growth, development and transformation of its oceans sector. SAIMI was established to help unlock South Africa’s maritime potential by aligning and accelerating all maritime education, training, research, industry, social and government stakeholders into a comprehensive force for change and to jointly implement high impact interventions. To this end, SAIMI has been positioned to lead a partnership and collaborative effort towards the efficient and effective education, training
and upskilling of South Africans, linking them to socio economic opportunities and investing in new knowledge, technologies and innovations for a globally competitive SA maritime sector.
“A highly skilled, knowledge-intensive and sustainable oceans sector”
* Highly skilled and competent workforce
* Knowledge intensive oceans sector
* Sustainable oceans sector and economy
Our core values are underpinned by our enduring desire to make a sustainable impact. They serve as a set of guiding principles for all our staff and partners. Our way of working is, therefore, grounded on the IMPACTS value system:
* Integrity - Underpinning all our work, we think and act with integrity
* Meaningful work -We focus our resources and efforts on high impact work
* People - We embrace Ubuntu and are open, inclusive & connected
* Accountability - We take responsibility for our own actions
* Collaboration - Success is built on relationships and joint efforts
* Transformation - We believe in the creation of shared value, growth and inclusivity
* Sustainability - We meet the needs of the present without diminishing opportunities for the future
“To help unlock South Africa’s oceans and maritime socio economic opportunities by catalysing education, skills development, training, research and innovation initiatives through broad based collaborative partnerships and networks”
We will contribute to South Africa and Africa’s socio economic development in the oceans economy, through collaborative efforts across our network of partners:
* To help educate, train and develop a highly competent workforce for the oceans sector
* To undertake research into complex problems and design value creating solutions
* To conduct sector analysis, discover insights, foresights and leading perspectives on strategic issues affecting the oceans sector
* To support the introduction and application of new and innovative operations, products and services in the oceans sector
* To facilitate the systematic management of local and continental knowledge of our oceans sector .