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Da Vinci Blog

12 April 2022 (1)

12 Apr: Dr Dzingai Katsamba, Dean: Technology and Innovation, On Creativity as being the crucible of sustainable innovation

Creativity, the crucible of sustainable innovation   Organisations have been grappling with applied innovation, yet the starting point is managing creativity. Without creativity, ideas cannot be generated, and the term innovation itself becomes just another buzzword devoid of practical solutions to the growth and sustainability of any organisation. It is, therefore, within the bounds of creativity that ideas are generated, and if incubated, can become implementable solutions that can be commercialised. Creativity can be viewed from the perspectives of creative confidence, creative risk-taking, and creative action, which allow for the emergence of creative outcomes. It is in the creative outcomes that the crucible of sustainable innovation is found.   Creative Confidence Confidence remains one of the greatest abilities to apply when thinking and generating ideas to solve a crisis. Confidence has been seen to play an important role in migrating from creative potential to creative action. Belief in confidence also…

Image: Karolina Grabowsk

04 Apr: Dr Heather Goode: Some practical suggestions for working adult learners

How can you make the most of extra time during a break, with extra public holidays, or when work is somewhat quieter than usual?     The last two or so years consolidate a challenging and hectic period for most of us due to the complexities of Covid-19. This is even more so for someone who has been (or still is) juggling studies in tandem with full-time or part-time work. A question that then crosses the mind is: how can you make the most of extra time during a break, with extra public holidays, or when work is somewhat quieter than usual?   Rest, Recharge and Re-connect We now live and work in an environment where we need to constantly improve and often stay in contact 24/7. And yet, while it may sound counter-intuitive, disconnecting from your studies and work is critical for productivity. Rest and adequate sleep fuels problem…

21 March 2022 FEATURED

19 Mar: Davincians Reflect on Human Rights Day

On Human Rights Day, we celebrate the attainment of democracy but also commemorate the massive sacrifice made for South Africa’s freedom.     On 21 March 1960 ordinary South Africans took to the dusty streets of the township of Sharpeville, near Vereeniging, in the then Transvaal, and went on to the local police station in protest against inhumane Apartheid pass laws. The protest ended in bloodshed. A substantial number of people died on that fateful day, and others got injured by a brutal police force.  Remembered as the Sharpeville Massacre in the new democratic dispensation, it was a day when the people – in the noble pursuit of proclaiming their rights as equal citizens in their nation, were met with contempt. That scorn was to become entrenched in our memories and got inserted as a segment in the nation’s unequal past. This is the reason today we commemorate this day,…

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09 Mar: Professor Paul Singh shares his thoughts on plagiarism

Professor Paul Singh, Academic & Supervisor at The Da Vinci Institute, shares his thoughts on plagiarism and shares some tips to avoiding it… The magical words of the famous author, J.K. Rowling are so applicable to all students and researchers, especially regarding acknowledging their sources when submitting assignments and research: “There is an expiry date on blaming your parents for steering you in the wrong direction. The moment you are old enough to take the wheel, the responsibility lies with you”.   What is plagiarism? Simply put, plagiarism is taking someone else’s work, ideas, thoughts, pictures, charts, music, graphics, videos, etc.) and passing it off as your own. There is too much information on almost any topic available electronically, and many students feel tempted to cut and paste content without acknowledging the source. This usually happens when students refer to the internet, blogs, websites, movies, or any other media. Sometimes…

Post Covid Blog by Dr Dzingai WEBSITE

17 Nov: Innovating your business for agility post the Covid-19 pandemic

Innovating your business for agility post the Covid-19 pandemic: Reflections by our Dean of Innovation and Technology, and Head Adjudicator of the tt100 Business Awards, Dr. Dzingai Katsamba.   The Covid-19 pandemic has left many companies seeking to adopt new ways of working at speed. Executives are also interested in transforming to flatter, non-hierarchical structures, assuming more radical approaches to decision making and ways of executing work. The old norm of waiting around for best practices to emerge can no longer yield any results. Business leaders recognise the compelling need to shift from adrenaline-based speed during COVID-19 to speed by design and for long-term survival. The real winners are now experimenting boldly. Outlined below are eight actions to unleash sustainable speed through organisational innovation. Delegate decision making with agility The pandemic has demonstrated that it is possible to make decisions faster without destroying the business. This, therefore, compels leaders to…

24 September 2021

24 Sep: We celebrate our Heritage Day

The month of September, a period where we tilt in the direction of our cultural heritage in South Africa has arrived. It is further signified by our celebration of the actual day of heritage (September 24), which serves as a part of the many values inculcated into South Africa’s public life by the democratic order. In the process, inevitably implying unity amongst all people. This is a time when the cultural quintessence that forms as a part of our rainbow nation – its unique eleven official languages, ethnic diversity, thus varied traditions and celebrations – reverberate in remarkability. In such a propitious time as this for culture, we appreciate the diverse lexicon of dialects that South Africa is enriched with, as such is arguably intelligible beyond South African borders. Think of Setswana from Botswana, Sesotho from Lesotho, or Swazi from Eswatini (and other languages such as Ndebele). Crossing, as it…

30 September 2021

23 Sep: What does it mean to have an agile mindset…?

Some reflections by our Executive Dean Academic: Dr Franzél du Plooy-Cilliers   In the current epoch in which we find ourselves, there have been multiple realities we have had to navigate. The global pandemic and the resulting socio-economic crisis that the world is facing, has seen a quagmire of disruptions to the micro-, meso-, macro- and exo systems of the entire eco-system. In some instances, individuals and organisations faced many challenges that threatened their survival, and many people are experiencing additional stress and even threats to their livelihoods. However, in other cases, some very innovative entrepreneurial endeavours have emerged, and several companies came up with creative solutions to some of the challenge that they were facing that changed the way in which they do business. Regardless of the circumstance, it has certainly been a time of evolution, deep reflection and a time of self-reflection. One of the things that I…

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23 Sep: Book review insights: Tshepho Langa

Dr Heather Goode provides some insights as she delves deeper into Tshepo Langa’s book entitled, “The ADI Model: What am I Thinking?”   Hidden between the pages of Tshepho Langa’s book is a Richard Templar quote from his book “The rules of management”, who once said “being creative is about finding new and different ways to solve problems”[i]. Therefore,  a challenge in leadership is finding ways to shift your thinking, adapt to changing contexts, improve your problem-solving skills, and approach old problems and new contexts with new ideas. Tshepho Langa, who is a faculty member at The Da Vinci Institute, sought to engage with this essential aspect of personal development when he wrote, “The ADI Model: What am I Thinking?”. Tshepho describes writing this book as being “about inspiring intentional mindset change towards a meaningful success and contribution to others.” The book initiates by detailing Tshepho’s own experiences and shifts…

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15 Sep: Impact of long Covid on the Workplace and Higher Education

Ntokozo Mahlangu, Alumnus/Vice-Chairperson of Council: Thoughts about the impact of long Covid on the Workplace and Higher Education   Together with the shift to working from home, delivery modes for higher education have also shifted, embracing technology. Such changes are roundly embraced as the “new normal”. In many respects, this may not be a bad situation depending on how you envisage both the workplace and higher education structures of the future. In terms of higher education, I believe a trend toward partaking in shorter programmes has emerged and may arguably be a very concerning trend when considering long-Covid victims. Long-Covid patients are experiencing significant, and possibly, permanent cognitive loss. It also appears that these effects have been somehow under reported and not thoroughly on public discourse and seem to have slipped under the radar of higher education institutions. Cognitive ability (mental agility) in my opinion, is the heart of teaching…

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15 Sep: Some thoughts on South Africa’s unemployment

A faculty member at The Da Vinci Institute, Mixo Sweetness Sithole reflects… Unemployment continues to be a crisis in South Africa, and we should be wary about its negative effects on people and society in general. Socio-economic impacts society at the micro, meso, exo and macro levels.  Melinda Du Toit, a post-doctoral research fellow at the Centre for Social Development in Africa (University of Johannesburg) indicates that, “[u]nemployment has both individual and social consequences that require public policy interventions. For the individual, unemployment can cause psychological distress, which can lead to a decline in life satisfaction. It can also lead to mood disorders and substance abuse. Unemployment can affect one’s social status ascription as well, which manifests through stigmatisation, labelling, unfair judgement, and marginalisation.” Furthermore, unemployment can result in increased crime rates, as well as socio-political unrests – as witnessed recently in South Africa. According to a recent publication by…