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Current Awareness 2020: January

What's happening in South Africa

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

Global poverty and education 



The Children International organisation is focused on making a long-term impact by helping kids living in poverty. Their vision: graduating healthy, educated, empowered and employed young adults so they can achieve the goal of breaking the cycle of poverty.

Education leads to healthier childhoods and, ultimately, to greater economic prospects as adults.

If all students in low-income countries gained basic reading skills, 171 million people could be lifted out of poverty.

Further reading

Google Scholar search

Click on the link below and browse the list of results for interesting articles on the topic.

poverty and education in south africa


About the monthly 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.

Selected noteworthy days in January

Peter Pan On Ice 15 Jan - 2 Feb 

The ice-skating company, The Imperial Ice Stars, returns to South Africa with a brand-new show Peter Pan On Ice. The highly accomplished cast brings their athletic and artistic talents to retell J M Barrie’s well-loved story of Peter Pan. Cape Town

An Act of Defiance: The Story of Bram Fischer 18 Jan 

This film details the remarkable courtroom drama that surrounded the infamous Rivonia Trial of 1963. The film is told from the point of view of the tenacious Afrikaans lawyer Bram Fischer. Maboneng

Johannesburg International Mozart Festival-Expat Life in South Africa 18 Jan - 2 Feb 

Mozart logo

JIMF will be presenting concerts and cultural events all under the theme "Alle Menschen Werden Bruder". The festival covers 10 days of delight and joy celebrating music, art, and culture across the metro area. This lavish concert will feature soloists Sipho Fubesi and Hlengiwe Mkhwanazi singing sparkling arias. 

Pongal On The Farm - 19 Jan

The objective of the South Indian Harvest Festival is to appreciate the important role farming plays in our lives. It’s an annual opportunity in our culture, to appreciate our natural resources, the hard working farmers and the hard working farm animals who silently produce the food on our tables. 

International Conference on Information Management and Industrial Engineering 20-22 Jan 

The Conference aims to be one of the leading international conferences for presenting novel and fundamental advances in the fields of Information Management and Industrial Engineering. Cape Town

International Conference on Mechanical and Intelligent Manufacturing Technologies 20-22 Jan  

The Conference aims to provide a platform for researchers, engineers, academicians as well as industrial professionals from all over the world. Cape Town

Business Analyst Innovation Day 23 Jan 

Business Analyst Innovation Day is a platform you will learn how business analysis can make the difference between a successful and a struggling project. Johannesburg  

The Pebble Shakers 24 Jan 

The Pebble Shakers is a Cape Town-based group of jazz musicians specialising in swing-era tunes. To celebrate the history of swing in South Africa, the band also plays a selection of swinging South African tunes that haven’t been played live in over 70 years, through the Echoes of Sophiatown music revival project. 

International Day of Education 24 Jan  

The adoption of the UN resolution “International Day of Education” demonstrated the unwavering political will to support transformative actions for inclusive, equitable and quality education for all. About 265 million children and adolescents around the world do not have the opportunity to enter or complete school; 617 million children and adolescents cannot read and do basic math. Without education opportunities for all, countries will not succeed in breaking the cycle of poverty.The 2020 theme is ‘Learning for people, planet, prosperity and peace’.

Chinese New Year 25 Jan

Joburg has a very active Chinese community and local Chinese New Year celebrations are always an exuberant, noisy and colourful affair.

Standard Bank Ironman event 26 Jan               

Athletes will begin their day with a 1.2-mile ocean swim in East London's Orient Beach. The rolling hills of the 56-mile bike course will be a challenge. A 13.1-mile, flat run will consist of two-loops with spectacular ocean views. Finishers will be greeted in true style with African dancers, music and spectators. East London

National Police Day 27 Jan 

On National Police Day the South African Police Service (SAPS) remembers the sacrifices that our men and women in blue have made and continue to make as they provide safety for all who live in South Africa.

SAUPEC, RobMech, PRASA and Southern Africa Regional Conference  29 – 31 Jan

The Conference focuses on power generation, power electronics, renewable energy, electrical machines and drives, high voltage engineering, protection and system automation, distributed control systems, energy, mobile robotics, mining robotics and etc. Cape Town

Politics of Joy 30 Jan logo

Richard Cock facilitates a singing session with the aid of singers from the Gauteng Choristers, during which the audience are taught to sing the Ode To Joy from Beethoven’s 9th Symphony, as well as a South African song on the theme of joy. The singing session is then followed by a panel discussion about the politics of joy, and its relation to the social and political history of Beethoven’s Europe and South Africa over the last century. Johannesburg

Microsoft Ignite 30-31 Jan 

The tour provides technical training led by Microsoft experts and your community. You'll learn new ways to build solutions, migrate and manage infrastructure, and connect with local industry leaders and peers.

Global Robotics Festival 31 Jan

The Global Robotics Festival is a day filled with career guidance in AI, Robotics and Internet Of Things (IoT). AI and Robotics companies exhibit different and interesting robots, drones, electric cars and much more. The festival also hosts various competitions and events with autonomous robots. These aim to encourage students to have fun while learning principles of Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) and Computer Science.

In the media

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Should you wish to read Current Awareness guides of previous years, please visit the archive:







Looking for upcoming conferences?

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

Golden oldies

Colclough, Christopher. Formal Education Systems and Poverty-Focused PlanningThe Journal of Modern African Studies, vol. 15, no. 4, 1977, pp. 569–589. JSTOR,

Christie, Pam, and Adele Gordon. Politics, Poverty and Education in Rural South AfricaBritish Journal of Sociology of Education, vol. 13, no. 4, 1992, pp. 399–418. JSTOR,