2009 Karoo Development Conference Graaff-Reinet

Conference proceedings

The major highlight of 2009 was the Greater Karoo Development Conference, held on 26-27 March in Graaff-Reinet. The Conference was co-funded by the NRF, the Open Society Foundation, the Northern Cape Department of Economic Affairs, the Western Cape Department of Economic Affairs, and the Cacadu District Municipality in the Eastern Cape. The Camdeboo Local Municipality in Graaff-Reinet sponsored the venue. The Conference included 25 papers, in five key themes: Regional Development, Tourism, Agriculture, Business Development and Cultural Development. The Conference ended with a discussion session of the Karoo Development Foundation's Working Group, which highlighted new themes for research and development. The Conference was attended by two senior officials of Desert Knowledge Australia, and their costs were funded by AUSAID. The event received a great deal of media coverage, including Radio Sonder Grense, which transmitted their morning news programmes from our Graaff-Reinet venue.

Conference Programme / List of Exhibitors / List of Speakers

Sponsorship Page Trade Fair: Opening address by Mayor of Cacadu District Municipaslity

Clr Mlungisi Mvoko, Mayor of Cacadu District Municipality, opening the Karoo Trade Fair

The Mayor of Camdeboo Local Municipality, Mr Daantjie Japhta, opening the Conference

The Ncweba choir of Graaff-Reinet performed at the Opening Ceremony of the Karoo Trade Fair

The Mighty Angels Khoisan Dance Group provided entertainment at the Opening of the Trade Fair

Papers (preliminary list):

Darryl David:
Literary Tourism in the Karoo - 25KB

Mr Darryl Davids of the University of KwaZulu-Natal, speaking on literary tourism in the Karoo

Al Soko:
Transport as a catalyst for tourism and socio-economic development - 169KB

Mr Al Soko of the Department of Transport, Eastern Cape, exploring the interface between transport and tourism in the Karoo


Doreen Atkinson:
Promoting cross-border collaboration in the Karoo - 644KB

Stef Coetzee:
Chambers of business in Karoo towns - unexplored potential - 51KB

Dr Stef Coetzee of the Afrikaanse Handelsinstituut made the case for local chambers of commerce in the Karoo


Keith Bodman:
What mines can do to promote economic development - 66KB

Jaco Mostert:
Towards a new spatial strategy for the Karoo - 102KB

Aggrey Mahanjana:
Emergent Red Meat Producers Organisation - 88KB

Mr Aggrey Mahanjane, of NERPO, speaking on the empowerment of black farmers


Kay Bodman:
Support for emergents farmers in Western Australia - 72KB

Amie Aucamp:
National Wool Growers Training - 28KB

Ernst Idsardi
Agricultural Training for small holder - 91KB

Dr Ernst Idsardi, University of the Free State, speaking on the empowerment of new farmers in the Karoo


Danie Jordaan
World wide agricultural branding Mohair Industry - 167KB

Judy Maguire
Tourism and the heritage assets of the Karoo - 785KB

Sue Milton
The basis for sustainable business in the Karoo: Bringing ecological and economic issues together - 77KB

Mark Wells
Biogas technology for energy and nutrient benification - 1.51MB

Sue Taylor
Niche products in the Karoo - hoodia and olives - 333KB

Dr Sue Taylor, Associate of the University of the Free State, speaking on indigenous agricultural products


Bruce Rubidge
The Karoo as a unique geological site, the economic potential of deep history - 981KB

Prof Bruce Rubidge of Wits University, speaking on the fossil heritage of the Karoo

Dr Danny Titus, ATKV, discussing the creation of human, cultural and social capital in the Karoo.

Theuns Eksteen of Camdeboo Local Municipality, the Master of Ceremonies of the Opening of the Trade Fair

Ms Patricia de Lille, Trustee of the Karoo Development Foundation, opening the Trade Fair

Ms Riana van der Ahee, recounting her experiences as a Karoo entrepreneur

Ms Jan Ferguson of Desert Knowledge CRC, providing insights from the Australian experience at the Working Group discussion

Mr Johan van Jaarsveld of Montego Feeds in Graaff-Reinet, speaking about the potential of manufacturing in the Karoo

Mr Ken Johnson of Desert Knowledge Australia, explaining the parallels between the Karoo and the Outback

Mr Duma Magxwaliso of Cacadu District Municipality, chairing the session on business development

Prof Erwin Schwella of the University of Stellenbosch, facilitating the Karoo Working Group discussion

Mighty Angels Khoisan Dance Group from Koukamma Municipality in the Cacadu District.

Nqweba Choir from Graaff-Reinet. 
Choir and Khoisan dancers at of Trade Fair.

A stall at the Trade Fair

The beautiful dancers of the Mighty Angels Khoisan Dance Group

Presentations (preliminary list)

Mark Ingle:
Space Tourism - 673KB

Deidre van Rooyen:
Uranium in the Karoo - 286KB

Ms Deidre van Rooyen, University of the Free State, analysed the implications of uranium mining in the Karoo

Emil Nothnagel:
Creation of business hubs - 383KB

Mr Emil Nothnagel of the University of the Western Cape, explaining the concept of Business Hubs

Doreen Atkinson:
Promoting cross-border collaboration in Karoo - 608KB

Daan Toerien:
Promoting Rural Development in the Karoo – New Paradigms in Economic Thinking - 882KB

Johann Kirsten:
The images of the Karoo: A marketing opportunity and case for intellectual property protection - 84KB

Danie Jordaan:
World wide agricultural branding Mohair industry - 376KB

Mr Danie Jordaan, speaking on the marketing of Karoo mohair

Aggrey Mahanjane:
Emergent Red Meat Producers Organization - 393KB

Sue Taylor:
Niche products in Karoo - olives and hoodia - 634KB

Ernst Idsardi:
Supporting emergent farmers - 805KB

Melissa Wahl:
Wind and solar energy alternatives for Karoo - 1.03MB

Ms Melissa Wahl, speaking on solar energy options in the Karoo

Prof Lucius Botes ofthe University of the Free State, Trustee of the Karoo Development Foundation


Dr Dirk Troskie, Chair of the sesson on Agricultural Development in the Karoo


Dr Bernie Fanaroff of the Square Kilometer Array Telescope project in the Northern Cape


Dr Anton de Wit, speaking on the measurement of quality of life in the Karoo


The keynote speaker, Ms Sue van der Merwe, Trustee of the Karoo Development Foundation


Mr Gugile Nkwinti, the MEC for Agriculture in the Eastern Cape and now Minister of Rural Development and Land Reform, encouraged the promotion of development in the Karoo

Articles from the Landbouweekblad and Farmers Weekly

Farmers Weekly - Daan Toerien

Farmers Weekly - Karoo Brand

Farmers Weekly - Making the most of the Karoo

Farmers Weekly - Sue Taylor

Farmers Weekly - What the desert needs

Landbouweekblad - Theuns Botha




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