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Current Awareness Archive: Apr2016

What is Current Awareness?

Current awareness is the term used to describe staying informed by keeping up to date with the latest publications, research and news in your field.

The perspective of current awareness is the present and the forthcoming, as opposed to the retrospective. 

Current awareness ranges from looking for information on specific topics on a regular basis (and this usually involves the assistance of your Personal Librarian to help you set up a search profile matched to your research interests) to embracing a wider, more general, and cross-disciplinary view that brings an element of serendipity into your search for the latest information.

Informally, researchers remain alert in all contexts for useful information and insights that will inform their daily practice, their research, and spark off innovative and creative ideas for new avenues of research.

Website of the Month

Website of the month

April's websites of the month are:

WIPO - World Intellectual Property Organization

 WIPO is the global forum for intellectual property services, policy, information and cooperation. We are a self-funding agency of the United Nations, with 188 member states.

Our mission is to lead the development of a balanced and effective international intellectual property (IP) system that enables innovation and creativity for the benefit of all. Our mandate, governing bodies and procedures are set out in the WIPO Convention, which established WIPO in 1967.

Autism South Africa (ASA)

Autism South Africa (ASA) aspires to achieving a society in which persons with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) enjoy all the rights and opportunities to meet their needs and fulfil their potentials, throughout their lives, as loved and valued members of their families and communities


This day in history

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About the Monthly Current Awareness Page

The year is marked with many special days, weeks, and months dedicated and devoted to raising awareness about important issues.

This monthly post, compiled by the Information Search Librarians Team, will note special dates and themes, and draw your attention to possibly interesting cross-disciplinary topical references intended to inform and to inspire ideas for research.

April 2016

Selected Noteworthy Days in April:


South Africa celebrates Freedom Month during April (#freedommonth2016). April will forever resonate in the history of our nation as the month that saw the first democratic elections in 1994 that gave birth to freedom and constitutional democracy in South Africa. This election marked turning point that saw the previously disadvantaged become part of the South African political processes. The country belongs to all who live in it.

The 1994 breakthrough promotes the values of freedom and democracy that are an integral part of our Constitutional democracy. Freedom Day is celebrated on 27 April in celebration of the historic participation of all the people of South African citizens in the first free and fair democratic elections

National Orders


National Orders are the highest awards that a country, through its President, bestows on its citizens and eminent foreign nationals.

The National Orders are normally conferred on Freedom Day 27 April in recognition of the outstanding achievements of ordinary South Africans and foreign nationals.National Orders honour those who made sacrifices beyond measure and dedicated their lives so that we can enjoy our freedom today.

The President as the fount (holder, cradle, main source) of honour in the country bestows these Orders and Decorations and is assisted by the Director-General in The Presidency, who is the Chancellor of National Orders and an Advisory Council on National Orders, in the execution of this responsibility.

There are six categories of National Orders, each recognising unique achievements by South Africans or foreign nationals:

The Order of Mendi for Bravery

The Decoration is awarded to South African citizens who have performed an extraordinary act of bravery that placed their lives in great danger, or who lost their own lives including in trying to save the life of another person, or by saving property, in or outside the Republic of South Africa.

The Order of the Baobab

This Order is awarded to South African citizens for distinguished service. The service awarded is well above and beyond the ordinary call of duty.

The Order of Ikhamanga

The Order of Ikhamanga is awarded to South African citizens who have excelled in the fields of arts, culture, literature, music, journalism or sport. This award is made in three categories. For exceptional achievement the Order is awarded in gold It is awarded in sliver for excellent achievement, and in bronze for outstanding achievement.

The Order of Luthuli

The Order is awarded to South Africans who have made a meaningful contribution to the struggle for democracy, human rights, nation-building, justice and peace, and conflict resolution.

The Order of the Companions of O.R. Tambo

The Order of the Companions of O R Tambo is awarded in three categories to eminent foreign nationals and other foreign dignitaries for friendship shown to South Africa. It therefore concerned primarily with matters of peace, co-operation, international solidarity and support and is integral to the execution of South Africa's international and multilateral relations.

The Order of Mapungubwe

The Order of Mapungubwe is awarded to South African citizens for achievements that have impacted internationally and served the interests of the Republic of South Africa.


Autism Awareness Month

Every year, autism organizations around the world celebrate the day with unique fundraising and awareness-raising events. Find out which major global landmarks will light up blue in 2016.


Other noteworthy days in April:

 Sporting events in April:


In the Media


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Should you wish to read Current Awareness guides of previous years, visit the Archive

Looking for Upcoming 2016 Conferences?

If you are looking for 2016's forthcoming conferences, the following websites are helpful:


Golden Oldies

This month's golden oldies articles of choice are:

In South Africa at Election Time

Elleke Boehmer
Journal of Southern African Studies
Vol. 20, No. 2 (Jun., 1994), pp. 163-164

Holding Together South Africa

J. Daniel O'Flaherty
Foreign Affairs
Vol. 72, No. 4 (Sep. - Oct., 1993), pp. 126-136
DOI: 10.2307/20045720


Understanding Transition towards Post-Apartheid South Africa

Rajen Harshe
Economic and Political Weekly
Vol. 28, No. 38 (Sep. 18, 1993), pp. 1980-1983

International Monitoring of the Transition to Democracy in South Africa, 1992-1994

Douglas G Anglin
African Affairs
Vol. 94, No. 377 (Oct., 1995), pp. 519-543