A. ASSAf Consensus Study Reports

About this Collection

In order for ASSAf to fulfil its science advisory role regarding key challenges facing the nation, a variety of consensus and assessment studies are undertaken. Activities are aligned closely with government’s strategic goals. The in-depth Consensus Study Reports are either commissioned by an external funder or generated by a Standing Committee on a specific topic. ASSAf has Standing Committees on Health; Scholarly Publishing in South Africa; Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) Education; Biosafety and Biosecurity; Humanities; and Science for the Reduction of Poverty and Inequality.

Peer-Review Status: Peer-Reviewed

Enquiries: Susan Veldsman

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Now showing 1 - 10 of 46
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    A Review of Research, Development and Innovation of Peaceful Uses of Nuclear Technologies in South Africa
    (Academy of Science of South Africa (ASSAf), 2023) Academy of Science of South Africa (ASSAf)
    This report supports the high-level agreement between South Africa (through the DMRE) and the IAEA by providing a solid foundation upon which a national strategic framework on peaceful uses of nuclear technologies in South Africa can be built. The objectives of the study were to review relevant current and historical national policies, plans and strategies; review the national landscape of existing and emerging RDI role players and activities in the country; develop baseline information around the nuclear technology landscape to assist with targets and indicators for monitoring and evaluation; review the Country Programme Framework (CPF) between South Africa and the IAEA and make recommendations on how the IAEA Technical Cooperation Programme could be leveraged to strengthen the nuclear technology sector in South Africa; and make proposals on how to define a South African nuclear technology RDI flagship programme. Characterisation of the needs and gaps contains the following elements: • a brief explanation of the need setting out the context in terms of the severity and relevance. • a strategic objective to be achieved; and • an indicator, or indicators, for the proposed objective. The study was divided into six broad areas, namely: • agriculture and food security, • human health, • radiation protection, • water and environment, • energy and industry, • nuclear safety, security and safeguards.
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    Report on Grouped Peer Review of Scholarly Journals in Other Disciplines
    (Academy of Science of South Africa (ASSAf), 2023-06) Academy of Science of South Africa (ASSAf)
    The peer review report entitled Report on Grouped Peer Review of Scholarly Journals in Other Disciplines is the 14th in a series of discipline-grouped evaluations of South African scholarly journals. This is part of a scholarly assurance process initiated by the Academy of Science of South Africa (ASSAf). The process is centered on multi-perspective, discipline-based evaluation panels appointed by the Academy Council on the recommendation of the Academy’s Committee on Scholarly Publishing in South Africa (CSPiSA). This detailed report presents the peer review panel’s consolidated consensus reports on each journal and provides the panel’s recommendations in respect of DHET accreditation, inclusion on the SciELO SA platform and suggestions for improvement in general. The main purpose of the ASSAf review process for journals is to improve the scholarly publication in the country that is consonant with traditional scholarly practices.
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    Science action plan for shale gas exploration in the Karoo Basin
    (Academy of Science of South Africa (ASSAf), 2022) Academy of Science of South Africa (ASSAf); South African Academy of Engineering (SAAE)
    This document presents the response of the Academy of Science of South Africa (ASSAf) and the South African Academy of Engineering (SAAE) to a request submitted by the Department of Science and Innovation (DSI) for a Science Action Plan (SAP) in support of an emerging shale gas industry in South Africa. As proposed in the DSI Concept Note, a researcher was engaged to develop the draft document, which was compiled jointly by ASSAf and SAAE. The report has clustered the SAP proposals into three groups:
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    Mental health and the role of traditional healers
    (Academy of Science of South Africa (ASSAf), 2022) Academy of Science of South Africa (ASSAf)
    The provision of treatment, care and rehabilitation services for people with Mental, Neurological and Substance use (MNS) disorders is a multisectoral responsibility and affects various communities in South Africa and other challenged economies in Africa. MNS disorders are common, often disabling and associated with increasing premature mortality. Traditional healers have a unique role to play in MNS disorders especially in resource-limited settings. It was estimated that there are about 200,000 traditional healers as compared to 975 registered psychiatrists - who mostly practise in urban areas and the private sector. Traditional healers are highly accessible and accepted as health practitioners in Sub-Saharan countries. Traditional healers and those linked to faith-based organisations play a significant role in providing services for people with MNS disorders and are often an entry point into systems of care. These providers, therefore, could play a significant role in identifying people with such disorders, and in some cases, have worked co-operatively with health services in providing for the mental health and spiritual needs of individuals. There is a need to understand the role of traditional health practitioners in mental health care. This webinar sought to understand the role, knowledge, attitude, and practice of traditional healers in mental health care with the aim of encouraging their participation in terms of the treatment, care and rehabilitation of people with MNS disorders.
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    Report on Grouped Peer Review of Scholarly Journals in Economics and Business Management
    (Academy of Science of South Africa (ASSAf), 2022) Academy of Science of South Africa (ASSAf)
    The peer review report titled 'Report on Grouped Peer Review of Scholarly Journals in Economics and Business Management' is the 13th in a series of discipline-grouped evaluations of South African scholarly journals. This is part of a scholarly assurance process initiated by the Academy of Science of South Africa (ASSAf). The process is centered on multi-perspective, discipline-based evaluation panels appointed by the Academy Council on the recommendation of the Academy’s Committee on Scholarly Publishing in South Africa (CSPiSA). This detailed report presents the peer review panel’s consolidated consensus reports on each journal and provides the panel’s recommendations in respect of DHET accreditation, inclusion on the SciELO SA platform and suggestions for improvement in general. The main purpose of the ASSAf review process for journals is to improve the scholarly publication in the country that is consonant with traditional scholarly practices.
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    Report on Grouped Peer Review of Scholarly Journals in Mathematics and Science
    (Academy of Science of South Africa (ASSAf), 2021) Academy of Science of South Africa (ASSAf)
    The peer review report entitled Report on Grouped Peer Review of Scholarly Journals in Mathematics and Science is the 12th in a series of discipline-grouped evaluations of South African scholarly journals. This is part of a scholarly assurance process initiated by the Academy of Science of South Africa (ASSAf). The process is centered on multi-perspective, discipline-based evaluation panels appointed by the Academy Council on the recommendation of the Academy’s Committee on Scholarly Publishing in South Africa (CSPiSA). This detailed report presents the peer review panel’s consolidated consensus reports on each journal and provides the panel’s recommendations in respect of DHET accreditation, inclusion on the SciELO SA platform and suggestions for improvement in general. The main purpose of the ASSAf review process for journals is to improve the scholarly publication in the country that is consonant with traditional scholarly practices.
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    Evaluation of Alternative Telecommunication Technologies for the Karoo Central Astronomy Advantage Area
    (Academy of Science of South Africa (ASSAf), 2021) Academy of Science of South Africa (ASSAf); South African Academy of Engineering (SAAE)
    The National Research Foundation (NRF) requested the Academy of Science of South Africa (ASSAf), on behalf of South African Radio Astronomy Observatory (SARAO) and the Square Kilometre Array (SKA), to undertake an independent and objective evaluation of potential alternative telecommunication technologies for the areas of the Karoo Central Astronomy Advantage Areas (KCAAA). The study encompasses regulatory, public sphere, and technical dimensions to explore options for maintaining the functionality of the telescope while, at the same time, delivering appropriate connectivity solutions for local communities.
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    Second Biennial Report on the State of Climate Science and Technology in South Africa
    (Academy of Science of South Africa (ASSAf), 2019) Academy of Science of South Africa (ASSAf); Department of Science and Innovation (DSI)
    This is the second biennial report on the State of Climate Science and Technology in South Africa, commissioned by the Departments of Science and Innovation (DSI) and Environment, Forestry and Fisheries, and compiled by the Academy of Science of South Africa (ASSAf). The first biennial report, completed at the end of 2016, covered the period 2005 – 2015. This second report covered the period of 2016 – 2017.
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    Root Causes of Low Vaccination Coverage and Under-Immunisation in Sub-Saharan Africa
    (Academy of Science of South Africa (ASSAf), 2021) Academy of Science of South Africa (ASSAf)
    Sub–Saharan Africa (SSA) alone accounts for 40% of all global deaths, a phenomenon attributed to lack of access to available lifesaving vaccines (Wiysonge, Uthman, Ndumbe, & Hussey, 2012). WHO estimates that in 2019 the African region accounted for approximately 43% of unimmunised and incomplete immunised infants in the world (i.e.: 8.5 million of the global 19.4 million). Relatedly, the region scores the lowest immunisation coverage, at 76% versus the global coverage of 86% (WHO, 2020a). This is despite several documented efforts by different stakeholders to improve coverage in the region (Mihigo, Okeibunor, Anya, Mkanda, & Zawaira, 2017). Many studies have been conducted on coverage and drivers for and bottlenecks against immunisation in SSA. (Wiysonge, Uthman, Ndumbe, & Hussey, 2012), (Wiysonge, Young, Kredo, McCaul, & Volmik, 2015), (Mihigo, Okeibunor, Anya, Mkanda, & Zawaira, 2017), (Madhi & Rees, 2018),(Bangura, et al., 2020), all of which have observed that there is varied performance among the constituent countries, and also within countries over time, denoting some implicitly common underlying correlates threading through areas of higher performance; and the same is seen with the poorer performing areas. This consensus study therefore seeks to categorise and make explicit these “root causes” and based on documented successes, to make recommendations to address the bottlenecks and harness the opportunities for reaching every child with all the recommended vaccines. The theory of change presentation style used in this report, categorising the root causes under four broad interlinked themes, can provide a common basis to rally like-minded partners around a thematic cause and thus develop multi-component, comprehensive strategies to bring about impactful change. This is in line with the call made by the World Health Organisation Strategic Advisory Group of Experts on Immunisation, which recommended that countries, regions and global immunisation partners commit to a comprehensive review of progress, impact, and implementation of the WHO Global Vaccine Action Plan to inform a post-2020 strategy taking into account lessons learned. This strategy will assist with attaining the relevant United Nations Sustainable Development Goals by 2030.
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    Report on Grouped Peer Review of Scholarly Journals in History, Philosophy and Politics
    (Academy of Science of South Africa (ASSAf), 2021) Academy of Science of South Africa (ASSAf)
    The peer review report entitled Report on Grouped Peer Review of Scholarly Journals in History, Philosophy and Politics is the eleventh in a series of discipline-grouped evaluations of South African scholarly journals. This is part of a scholarly assurance process initiated by the Academy of Science of South Africa (ASSAf). The process is centered on multi-perspective, discipline-based evaluation panels appointed by the Academy Council on the recommendation of the Academy’s Committee on Scholarly Publishing in South Africa (CSPiSA). This detailed report presents the peer review panel’s consolidated consensus reports on each journal and provides the panel’s recommendations in respect of DHET accreditation, inclusion on the SciELO SA platform and suggestions for improvement in general. The main purpose of the ASSAf review process for journals is to improve the scholarly publication in the country that is consonant with traditional scholarly practices.
©The Author/Academy of Science of South Africa (ASSAf)