Home Tech Journalists Vital To Africa’s Growth Story, Says Siemens

Journalists Vital To Africa’s Growth Story, Says Siemens

by Caroline Vutagwa
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Engineering firm, Siemens  has launched the 2014 pan-African Profile Awards for science and technology journalism. The firm is further looking into recognizing the media’s important role in communicating how science and technology support Africa’s economic development.

“Journalists play a vital role in distilling complex science, technology and engineering into a language that business, government and the public can understand,” says Clifford Klaas, Executive Director Siemens Southern Africa, which started and supports the awards.

Economic growth in Africa is expected to accelerate to 4.7 percent this year and 5 percent in 2015. A wealth of science and technology stories can be found with the growth of industries like oil and minerals, natural gas, coal, off-shore gas, copper and uranium, as well as infrastructure development and transport.

Minister for Science and Technology in South Africa, Naledi Pandor said: “We rely on journalists to explain how science and technology are an engine for economic growth and a vital factor in building a knowledge-based economy.”

The Profile Awards give hard-working journalists an opportunity to submit their work, and earn recognition for outstanding journalism. The long-standing Profile Awards cover science and technology in the widest sense – from infrastructure development, energy and mining to bio-sciences, health care and agriculture.

A student arm of the Profile Awards has also been introduced. The 2014 Student Profile Awards are open to journalism students from across Africa, with five student journalists in line to be 2014 Student Profile Award winners.

In addition to entries from working journalists, the 2014 Profile Awards also allows nominations of journalists by their peers, government, business or the public.

“The public engagement programme of the 2014 Profile Awards is crucial to raise awareness about the role of science and technology in our society and economy,” says Clifford Klaas.

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