Title page for ETD etd-03132010-180124

Document Type Master's Dissertation
Author Moodley, Nivan
URN etd-03132010-180124
Document Title Competitiveness of South Africa’s biotechnology sector
Degree MBA
Department Gordon Institute of Business Science
Advisor Name Title
Mr R Shipp Supervisor
  • technology industries
  • business management
Date 2009-04-01
Availability unrestricted

In 2001, the South African government developed a biotechnology strategy and set aside approximately $70 million to support and stimulate the development of biotechnology skills, capabilities and tools in South Africa(Campbell, 2007). During the past seven years, since the strategy‟s inception, no independent qualitative analysis has been conducted, which could provide insights into its strengths, weaknesses and the views of the different stakeholders within the industry as to the degree of stimulation and competitiveness the strategy as achieved. Competitiveness at a nation level is best described using Porter‟s Diamond of National

Competitiveness model which provides a framework for analysing competitiveness at an industry level. This analysis was performed by carrying out qualitative interviews with relevant stakeholders in the industry (government, the private sector, universities, science councils and venture capitalists) and assessing the sector in terms of the four attributes of the Diamond model.

The findings show South Africa‟s nascent biotechnology industry is stumbling at every step of the value chain, from laboratory bench to factory gate. A handful of first-class scientists vie for limited government funding, few of them have the expertise to commercialise their ideas, and domestic private capital has yet to be convinced that there is money to be made in the sector. Some of the key shortages are an entrepreneurial spirit in the research community and the lack of concentration of knowledge workers. There is a shortage of funding for sustaining new business projects created in medium and long-term research and development programmes with cooperation between scientists and entrepreneurs still at embryonic levels.

Copyright © 2008, University of Pretoria. All rights reserved. The copyright in this work vests in the University of Pretoria. No part of this work may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, without the prior written permission of the University of Pretoria

Please cite as follows:

Moodley, N 2008, Competitiveness of South Africa’s biotechnology sector, MBA dissertation, University of Pretoria, Pretoria, viewed yymmdd < http://upetd.up.ac.za/thesis/available/etd-03132010-180124/ >


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