In the spirit of recognising talent and research at the CSIR, the coveted 2012 JD Roberts Award recently went to CSIR Built Environment’s Dr Kevin Wall, for his leading role in developing innovative solutions for alternative housing, infrastructure asset management and the maintenance of sanitation systems. The celebratory event was held at the CSIR Conference Centre on 25 September 2012.
A registered professional engineer and town planner, Dr Wall’s life-long career in urban and regional engineering and planning and city management afforded him substantive experience in civil engineering and town planning in low-income urban areas and forward planning for development at metropolitan and regional scale.
The recognition for his expertise included the development of a franchising model for the routine maintenance of municipal infrastructure. The model has significant job creation potential for small entrepreneurs and workers, and can assist municipalities in meeting service delivery targets. The franchising model has been implemented in 400 schools in the Eastern Cape, with another 1 100 to follow. In addition, 600 households have also benefited, with another 2 400 to follow.
The annual JD Roberts Award is sponsored by Murray & Roberts and held in partnership with the CSIR. Instituted by Murray & Roberts in remembrance of Dr JD ‘Douglas’ Roberts, one of the group’s founding fathers, the award recognises and promotes competitive and environmentally sustainable solutions to human dilemmas, and encourages scientific research into technology that will enhance the quality of life of all South Africans.