National Framework for LED (2018-2028): The Role of Cities in Advancing Local Systems of Innovation

The role of cities in the development of national systems of innovation is well recognised. However, in South Africa, the function of cities in the development and advancement of innovative local systems remains a policy gap in Local Economic Development (LED) planning. Consequently, this Framework seeks to address this disconnect in the national systems of innovation and recognises that cities are:
  • Local nodes of global synapses
  • Centres of production and advanced services
  • Centres of global growth strategies
  • Hosts to most universities and science councils
  • Hosts to most science and technology infrastructure
  • Actual centres of investment attraction
  • Naturally relational
  • Offering a higher standard of living, by and large
  • More visible sites of inequality are highly contested spaces
However, cities do not represent the whole spatial and sectoral system of innovation. Therefore, it is critical that linkages between local systems of innovation and innovation systems within cities to be created and strengthened. This will advance, in some contexts, rural-urban linkages that support LED. You can download the National Framework for LED (2018-2028) For more information on LED planning, you can contact:

Ms Viwe Sibelekwana

Local Economic Development Planning

Tel: 012 334 5836