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Skills and technological innovation for global competitiveness : a case study of Portnet's Durban Harbour (PDH)

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There has been a global move towards involving people in process of change by developing organizations technologically, providing skills training and building capacity in all sectors of society, in spheres of government, the economy and civil society. As a result of global trends in South Africa attention is being given to the question of skills development and technological training within institutions and organizations operating in the developing environment in the public and private sector. Attention is also given to ensuring that such skills development and training includes goals of social, economic and political development. In the view of the above, this study will examine the question of skills development and technological training at Portnet Durban Harbour (PDH) in view of changing demands imposed by globalisation and new socio - political environment in South Africa as well as national responses to those demands. In examining this question, it would be recognised that the skill question couldn't be isolated from technological changes and increased economic competition resulting from globalization. Within this context, this study's aim would be to detennine the response of PDH to global challenges that impact heavily on the skills needs of this organization and technological changes. It will also examine whether PDH's responses take into account the current legislative and policy objectives in SA aimed at addressing the skill question. This study is infonned by Labour market theory and globalization theories. The first part of this study will attempt to capture the historical policies and legislation's on the issue of skills development in SA. Reflecting on the role played by this policies and legislation's to segment the labour market. Secondly, the study will look at debates on globalisation and the era in which organizations are operating. Thirdly, the role played by the SA government in this global era to reverse the past skills development imbalances. Lastly, the study will report on PDH's response to challenges imposed by globalization and how they address the question of skill.


Thesis (M.A.)-University of Natal, Durban, 2001.


Occupational training--Technological innovations., Employees--Training of--Durban., Labour market--South Africa., Globalization., Competition., Organizational effectiveness., Durban harbour., Theses--Industrial, organisational and labour studies.