The implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) require access to high-quality evidence. African researchers and innovators have never been in a better position to provide development actors with the requisite evidence, as African research productivity and innovation output continue to increase.

Yet, linking development actors with potentially transformative evidence remains a challenge. The timely availability of relevant evidence, appropriate application strategies and the absence of dissemination channels are key barries. The South African Sustainable Development Knowledge Hub (SA SD KH) seeks to better the uptake of appropriate evidence by overcoming these barriers.



The SA SD KH is the first African platform that connects development actors with research and innovations relevant for the implementation of the SDGs. It partners with like-minded institutions in order to link existing research and innovations with the SDGs and to share the research and innovations with development actors. By doing this, the SA SD KH wants to provide development actors with access to potentially transformative evidence, whilst maximising the impact of African research and innovations.

The beta version of the South African Sustainable Development Knowledge Hub (SA SD KH) was launched in March 2017 by Jeff Radebe, Minister in the Presidency of South Africa and custodian of South Africa’s National Development Plan. Figure 1 provides a graphic representation of the SA SD KH’s core process.


Our methodology

The SA SD KH methodology


The Hub contains two sources of evidence.

It contains, firstly, peer-reviewed research made available by institutions on their institutional repositories. These articles were identified by using 401 search terms gleaned from the SDGs. By the end of the year web traffic will be redirected to the originating repositories. We’re currently prototyping the Hub, and thus we’re only using research from four South African institutional repositories, and it amounts to the full texts of 621 items.

The Hub, secondly, also contains a further source of evidence, namely home-grown sustainable development innovations. These innovations were developed in Africa, and are similarly tagged in terms of SDGs.


Our partners



The United Nations’ Sustainable Development Solutions Network recently admitted the SA SD KH, via the University of Pretoria’s Albert Luthuli Centre for Responsible Leadership, as one of its newest members.




The South African government's Department of Science and Technology supports the SA SD KH in making South African sustainable development innovations available.