Covid-19 has greatly exacerbated the pressing socio-economic issues facing South Africans ‒ and many of the country’s most astute and informed corporate, non-profit, government and academic leaders will engage next month (13 and 14 October) on how to address these challenges.
“In response to the pandemic, we have migrated our popular in-person Business in Society Conference to a physically distant, but virtually connected one,” says Nick Rockey, Trialogue MD. “This will be our 13th annual conference. We need extra clarity and sharpness if we are to address South Africa’s massive social divisions and economic constraints, and that is what the conference aims to bring.
“Key topics will be how we can reform the quality of basic and further education, bolster youth employability, leverage tech for development, and draw on monitoring and evaluation to improve the effectiveness of developmental programming.”
Over 300 virtual delegates have registered to date, including participants from Malawi, Kenya and Zimbabwe. They can look forward to hearing 60 speakers and taking part in over a dozen breakout sessions and panel discussions, as well as connecting directly with other delegates, sponsors and speakers. Five keynote presentations will take place:
· Activist, medical doctor, academic, businesswoman and political thinker Dr Mamphela Ramphele, cofounder of ReimagineSA, will discuss how corporates can help to strengthen SA’s socio-political and economic conditions.
· Martin Kingston, executive chairman of Rothschild & Co, vice-president of Business Unity South Africa, and chair of the steering committee of Business for South Africa – Covid-19, will discuss rebuilding through collaboration.
· Busisiwe Mavuso, CEO of Business Leadership South Africa, an association of some of South Africa’s best-known organisational leaders, will consider lessons from Covid-19 for business and development communities.
· Nomfundo Mogapi, executive director at the Centre for the Study of Violence and Reconciliation (CSVR) has contributed to shaping regional policies and will talk about how to overcome trauma and woundedness for institutional and societal success.
· Ivorian-American Stephanie Kimou, an international development consultant and educator, is the founder and principal consultant for Population Works Africa. This organisation supports innovative, African-led development solutions. Ms Kimou will discuss amplifying diversity, inclusion, and belonging in development.
“The pandemic holds the potential to reshape our world for the better, but it is essential that we collaborate, share knowledge, and harness technology if we are to develop a more sustainable and egalitarian society,” says Rockey. “The Trialogue Business in Society Virtual Conference is an ideal opportunity to tap into the ideas and insights of some of South Africa’s most perceptive and networked developmental leaders.”
Chief sponsors are Rand Water Foundation (registration); Old Mutual (theme one – breaking barriers to quality education); Vodacom (theme three – ICT for development); and MTN SA Foundation (theme four – monitoring and evaluation for social change).