© Western Cape CoLab

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Projects & Interventions

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Current Projects

Samsung and UWC Take Digital Social Innovation to the Next Level

-January 2020 is the launching pad for a new phase of the pioneering Future-Innovation Lab

JOHANNESBURG, South Africa, 13 November 2019 – Following the launch of its R280-million Equity Equivalent Investment Programme (EEIP) in May this year, Samsung South Africa has announced the next phase of its Research and Development (R&D) Academy Project in conjunction with...

Below are the podcasts of our recent interview with Benito Vergotine's The Honest Truth programme on Smile FM.


The 4th Industrial Revolution has brought forth a great deal of opportunities for individuals and industries alike.  However, the importance of one’s digital identity and their subsequent awareness around cyber security has failed to be prioritized by civil society, policy makers and organisations. With the push for universal Internet access, the increasing use of social networks and a growing reliance on digital services, in...

The CoLab recently embarked on a project to use innovative geographical and spatial technologies to create a publicly available data visualisation portal for Digital Inclusion data. Our focus at present is specifically on the Western Cape and we hope this resource will be useful for academics, government, community intermediaries and citizens in general.

In the process of construction of this data portal we also aimed to start...

The University of the Western Cape is one of 11 Universities participating in the programme Common Good First: Digital Storytelling for Social Innovation.

This is an Erasmus+ funded initiative with the objective of supporting and growing the emerging South African social innovation sector. The project aims to create a digital network that will capture and showcase social impact projects in Northern Europe and South Africa.

It fu...

The Colab team recently exhibited some of our innovative projects at the occasion of the 2019 Budget Vote of Minister of Communications and Digital Technologies at the National Assembly, Parliament, Cape Town.

We received a lot of interest in both our Ultimate Celebrity Manager game aimed at teaching youth about the importance of managing their online identity in a safe manner, as well as our digital inclusion Starter Packs.


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Past Projects


12 OCTOBER 2017


City helps Leonsdale youth to bridge the digital divide

The City of Cape Town, in partnership with the University of the Western Cape (UWC), last week kicked off a training course in programming (coding) for unemployed youth and Grade 11 – 12 learners. This initiative is linked to the City’s SmartCape Programme. Read more below:

A first of its kind for the City, the accredited CoLab d...

The North-South-South programme is a collaboration initiative between University of Gent, Mzumbe University and the University of the Western Cape, supported by VLIR-UOS. The programme is structured around the development of individual and institutional skills and capability development for the application of mobile technology in view of community building within trusted environments.

This  digital skills and capacity developme...

The UDUBSit mobile application is a unique instantiation of a conceptual design that originated in the field of digital anthropology. The application design is based on the concept of a geographically focused, spatiotemporal grid that mediates interactions between user of the application in an attempt to make information more locally relevant and therefore more building of useful. Another explicitly stated focus of the applica...

What is CodeJam?

CodeJam is a program of the Western Cape CoLab, a social innovation and digital inclusion research laboratory situated at the University of the Western Cape.

CodeJam is a Public Private Partnership that is focused on developing young, local talent in the mobile apps and digital solutions space. It aims to build capacity in both the development and appropriation of mobile technology for socio-economic advances/be...

The Brief received by the CoLab was the following:

  • Create a campaign to engage the Class of 2014 and assist them to use and value social media as an academic development tool.

  • A further aim was to include the Class of 2014 within the UWC/VLIR-UOS Dynamics of Building a Better Society project’s Close Out conference and related festivities.

  • To establish a Class of 2014 virtual community

  • The campaign ran fr...

The CoLab is a project partner of the development of the Mfunzi mobile application being developed at the Mzumbe University in Tanzania. This is a sister-app of the UDUBSit project at UWC.

The Living Labs approach was utilised to develop a detailed Needs Analysis Report.

A recent article in  Telematics &Informatics 2015 by Prof Leo van Audenhove and Dr Dorien Baelden summarised some of the key challenges and opportunities i...

What is <code_jam> 2013?

CodeJam 2013 is focused on developing young, local talent in the mobile apps space. It aims to build capacity in both the development and appropriation of mobile technology for socio-economic advances/benefits.

CodeJam 2013 is designed as an educational, yet competitive space for young people to demonstrate their acquired skills and know-how in translating innovative solutions for real-life challenges in...

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