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What is an address in South Africa?

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Serena Coetzee, Antony Cooper

31 December 2008

English

Antony Cooper

Journal article

Council for Scientific and Industrial Research

South Africa

Addresses come in many forms as they have a variety of uses.  In this paper we illustrate the need for standardized addresses in South Africa by describing scenarios where they are required, or where standardized addresses would improve the current situation.  We present the eleven address types described in the current draft South African address standard (SANS 1883), which has been developed under the auspices of the South African Bureau of Standards.  We go on to show that these address types represent an all-encompassing description of an address in South Africa.  The address types have to accommodate the current situation where there are no mandated authorities that assign standardized addresses according to a set of guidelines, and we provide a critical evaluation of this situation.  Our contribution is threefold: it illustrates the need for standardized addresses, shows that there is an all encompassing description for an address in South Africa, and describes the potential adverse effect of the current lack of mandated authorities on unambiguous address specification and the benefits that address standardization would bring.

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