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Detailed Bio

Dr. Audrey Verhaeghe, Chairman, SA Innovation Summit

Dr. Audrey Verhaeghe
SA Innovation Summit

Dr Verhaeghe’s career spans over 20 years. She is CEO of the Research Institute for Innovation and Sustainability (RIIS) and championed the SA Innovation Network (Saine). She spearheaded the commercialisation of the SA Innovation Summit as an Southern African Institution and main innovation event for the country. RIIS was born out of a passion for the successful implementation of innovation. It is based on the recognition that our future impact, economic growth and overall sustainability will depend on how well we are able to develop our own innovative capabilities as well as harness the innovative opportunities that present itself in the organisations we work for. The need for organisations to instill continuous corporate renewal has become imperative for their sustainability in the environment and industries of the future.

Audrey’s most recent passion in business is for Open innovation as Great minds think outside. RIIS has an agreement with NineSigma, the world’s largest Open Innovation platform, to bring the concept and tools of Open Innovation to South Africa.

Innovation, Entrepreneurship, and Business Sustainability are Audrey's primary focus areas in business. She has been an adjudicator at various innovation competitions.  Innovation projects include strategy, audits, surveys, consulting, implementations, research, and training.

She has published a number of articles and conference papers on innovation as a business process. Some examples of the publications are:

  • Innovation is the Mother of Interventions. Sunday Times. May 2001
  • Measuring Innovation in a Knowledge Intensive Technology Organisation, R&D Management Journal, 2002
  • Lessons Learnt from Innovators. CPSI. 2004
  • Social Innovation. Knowledge Resources Conference. 2007
  • Innovation Builds our Nation. SA Innovator. 2007
  • Developing a Sustainability Index for Knowledge Driven Organisations. Business Today. 2010
  • Leading Innovation- Creating Africa's Competitive Edge. Mail and Guardian 2012
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