Michael Wolf, chief of Formula D. Photo: Supplied.

CAPE TOWN - The SA Innovation Summit kicks off today on the 12th to the 14th September 2018 for its 11th annual time at Cape Town Stadium.

The focus of this year event is to unlock Africa’s talent and to introduce it to the market, investors, collaboration partners etc. 

"We do this through very specific activities at the Summit such as the Inventors Garage, Pitching Den competitions, Match & Invest Platform, Thought leadership discussions, Hackathons, Exhibitions, CEO Panel discussion and lunch and Networking sessions", said the event organisers in a statement. 

As part of a panel discussion at the event,  Michael Wolf, chief executive of Formula D an interactive experience design firm believes that South Africa needs to undergo a learning revolution to keep up with the demands of the Fourth Industrial Revolution.

Wolf's firm seeks to make learning accessible and fun using interactive technologies and game design.

He was one of several delegates delivering commentary on the Ed tech that works, building pragmatic innovations for SA’s wicked problems panel earlier today.

Wolf said: “To tackle this systemic, multi-layered, wicked problem of education in South Africa, we need to generate societal consent around the value of education. If we manage to nurture a culture of learning in South Africa, we might be able to create enough momentum to shift our focus toward a better education system. A revised system supported by teachers, parents and policymakers,”. 

Wolf explains that a learning revolution involves using innovation to effectively change the way kids learn, and ultimately better understand complex subjects like maths and science in particular. 

"South Africa is ranked one of the poorest performing nations in the world when it comes to maths and science", said Wolf. 

According to a report released by the Institute for Race Relations (IRR) earlier this year, only 33 percent of matrics passed maths with a grade of 40 percent or higher and only 18.3 percent of government schools have science laboratories.

To improve these figures, Wolf says making use of informal learning space outside the school's framework is essential, and will provide a platform that helps to coach kids on how to best understand these complex subjects.

 Alternative learning spaces include community libraries, science centres and museums, which can easily substitute deficiencies in the formal education sector.

 “We need to make learning more appealing by unlocking those opportunities to learn in unique ways. Since our schools are under-resourced, we need to think of out-of-the-box ways to get this right. Imagine kids could tap into unused teaching resources like unemployed teachers or academics outside of school? Or have access to school facilities during the holidays, as well as the learning technology tools that will help them develop into individuals who understand these subjects completely,”

“The time has come for a learning revolution to transform the face of education in South Africa and with tech and innovation we can get it right,” said Wolf.