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National Science and Technology Forum (NSTF)

Current Finalists

Finalists announced: 2023/2024 NSTF-South32 Awards.

It is an extraordinary honour to be an Award finalist; also given the quality of the nominations received, the fierce competition that nominees face, and continued growing interest from the community every year.

Join the NSTF membership and pioneering partners/sponsors in applauding the NSTF-South32 Awards finalists. These comprise individuals, teams and organisations, as applicable, who have made an outstanding contribution to science, engineering and technology (SET) and innovation in South Africa under the categories below:

  • The phrases in italics at the end of the citation of the nominee indicates that a nominee qualified as a finalist under more than one category and mentions the applicable category/ies
  • Listed alphabetically according to the surname of the nominee or name of team/organisation under each category
  • Prof Nigel C Bennett – Chair: Austin Roberts Chair of Mammalogy; Full Professor: Zoology, Department (Dept) of Zoology and Entomology, Mammal Research Institute (Inst), University of Pretoria (UP) 
  • Prof Andre Ganswindt – Professor and Director: Mammal Research Inst, Dept of Zoology and Entomology, Faculty of Natural and Agricultural Sciences, UP 
  • Prof Antoinette Malan – Associate Emerita Professor: Dept of Conservation Ecology and Entomology, Faculty of Agriscience, Stellenbosch University (SU)  
  • Prof Lynn Morris – Deputy Vice-Chancellor: Research and Innovation, University of the Witwatersrand (Wits) 
  • Prof O Jonathan Okonkwo – Emeritus Professor; Rand Water Chair and Professor: Research and Development, Tshwane University of Technology (TUT) 
  • Prof Dave Richardson – Professor: Ecology, Centre for Invasion Biology, Department of Botany and Zoology, SU 
  • Prof Peter J Taylor – Professor: Dept of Zoology and Entomology, Afromontane Research Unit, QwaQwa Campus, University of the Free State (UFS)  
  • Prof Ben-Erik van Wyk – Chair: Department of Science and Innovation/National Research Foundation South African Research Chair Initiative (DSI/NRF SARChI) in Indigenous Plant Use, University of Johannesburg (UJ) 
  • Prof Marietjie Venter – Distinguished Professor and Research Chair: Emerging Viral Threats, One Health Vaccines and Surveillance; Infectious Diseases and Oncology Research Institute, Wits; Director: Centre for Emerging and Re-emerging Arbo and Respiratory Virus Research; Extraordinary Professor: Dept of Medical Virology, UP  

Prize sponsor: proSET (Professionals in SET), a sector of the NSTF representing almost 50 professional societies

  • Prof Sally Archibald – Professor: School of Plant and Animal Sciences, University of the Witwatersrand (Wits)
  • Prof Irene Barnes – Professor of Genetics: Department (Dept) of Biochemistry, Genetics and Microbiology; Research Leader: Forestry and Agricultural Biotechnology Institute (Inst); University of Pretoria (UP) 
  • Prof Timothy Dube – Director: Inst for Water Studies, University of the Western Cape (UWC); Adjunct Professor: United Nations University, Flores, Germany; and also in the Water Research Commission category
  • Dr Michelle Lochner – Senior (Sr) Lecturer: Dept of Physics and Astronomy, UWC; Staff Scientist: South African Radio Astronomy Observatory;  and also in the Special Annual Theme category
  • Prof Cletos Mapiye – Associate Professor: Animal Science, Stellenbosch University (SU) 
  • Prof Deshen Moodley – Chair: Department of Science and Innovation (DSI)/National Research Foundation (NRF)-University of Cape Town (UCT) South African Research Chairs Initiative (SARChI) in Artificial Intelligence Systems; Co-Director: Centre for Artificial Intelligence Research, Dept of Computer Science, UCT; and also in the Special Annual Theme category
  • Prof Khumbulani Mpofu – DSI/NRF SARChI Chair in Future Transport Manufacturing Technologies; Gibela Research Chair in Manufacturing and Skills Development; Founder and Board Member: Rail Manufacturing Centre for Entrepreneurship Rapid Incubator, Tshwane University of Technology (TUT); also in the Engineering Research Capacity Development and the Special Annual Theme categories
  • Prof Patience Mthunzi-Kufa – Research Group Head for Biophotonics and Manager (Photonics Centre) – Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR); Professor Extraordinarius: University of South Africa (Unisa); and also in the Management and the Engineering Research Capacity Development categories
  • Prof Gordon O’Brien – Associate Professor: Ecology and Programme Leader: “Rivers of Life”, University of Mpumalanga (UMP); and also in the Water Research Commission category 
  • Prof Samuel O Oluwafemi – Professor and Project Leader: Nanomaterials Synthesis and Applications Laboratory, Dept of Chemical Sciences, University of Johannesburg (UJ); and also in the Engineering Research Capacity Development category
  • Prof Sudesh Sivarasu – Chair: DSI/NRF SARChI Chair in Biomedical Engineering and Innovation; Director: Biomedical Engineering Research Centre; Head: UCT MedTech, UCT; and also in the Engineering Research Capacity Development category* 
  • Prof Grant Theron –  Group Leader: DSI/NRF Centre of Excellence for Biomedical TB Research, South African Medical Research Council (SAMRC) Centre for TB Research, Dept of Biomedical Sciences, Division of Molecular Biology and Human Genetics, Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences, SU  
  • Dr Bjorn von der Heyden – Sr Lecturer: Dept of Earth Sciences, African Rainbow Minerals GeoMetallurgy Research Co-Chair, SU  

Prize sponsor: South African Young Academy of Science (SAYAS)

  • Dr Zoleka N P Filander – Deep Sea Researcher: Department of Forestry, Fisheries, and the Environment (DFFE); and also in the Communication category* 
  • Dr Emmanuel Kweinor Tetteh – Research Fellow and Principal Investigator: Green Engineering Research Group, Department (Dept) of Chemical Engineering, Faculty of Engineering and the Built Environment, Durban University of Technology (DUT) 
  • Dr Daniel A Lemley – Research Fellow: Botany Dept, Institute for Coastal and Marine Research, Nelson Mandela University (NMU)
  • Dr Tiisetso E Lephoto – Lecturer and Principal Researcher: School of Molecular and Cell Biology, Faculty of Health Sciences, University of the Witwatersrand (Wits) 
  • Prof Tebogo Mashifana – Associate Professor and Head of Dept: Chemical Engineering Technology, University of Johannesburg (UJ) 
  • Prof Shahida Moosa – Head of Medical Genetics, Tygerberg Hospital; Associate Professor: Medical Genetics, Stellenbosch University (SU); and also in the Clinician-Scientist category* 
  • Prof Olanrewaju Oladimeji – Professor and Head: Doctoral Programme, Dept of Public Health, Sefako Makgatho Health Science University (SMU); Adjunct Professor: Faculty of Health Sciences, DUT 
  • Prof Saheed Sabiu – Associate Professor: Biotechnology and Food Sciences Dept, Faculty of Applied Sciences, DUT 
  • Dr Katekani Shingange – Scientist: Advanced Materials Division, Mintek 
  • Prof Leigh van den Heuvel – Specialist Psychiatrist: Tygerberg Hospital; Associate Professor, Dept of Psychiatry, Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences, SU; and also in the Clinician-Scientist category* 
  • Prof Cobus M Visagie – Associate Professor: Forestry and Agricultural Biotechnology Institute, University of Pretoria (UP)
  • Prof Rose Hayeshi – Director and Professor: Department (Dept) of Science and Innovation (DSI)/North-West University (NWU) Preclinical Drug Development Platform, NWU 
  • Prof Sylvester Mpandeli – Executive Manager: Water Use, Water Research Commission (WRC); Vice-President: International Commission on Irrigation & Drainage; Adjunct Professor: University of Venda (UNIVEN); and also in the Communications category* 
  • Prof Patience Mthunzi-Kufa – Research Group Head for Biophotonics and Manager (Photonics Centre) – Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR); Professor Extraordinarius: University of South Africa (UNISA); and also in the Researcher and the Engineering Research Capacity Development categories
  • Prof Bernard Slippers – Professor: Dept of Biochemistry, Genetics and Microbiology, Director: Tree Protection Co-operative Programme; Director: Forestry and Agricultural Biotechnology Institute, University of Pretoria (UP); and Director: Innovation Africa @UP 
  • Dr Christine Steininger – Projects Director: Genus, DSI-National Research Foundation (NRF) Centre of Excellence in Palaeosciences, University of the Witwatersrand (Wits) 
  • Prof Vered Aharonson – Professor: School of Electrical and Information Engineering, University of the Witwatersrand (Wits)
  • Prof Emmanuel Iwuoha – Professor: Chemistry, University of the Western Cape (UWC); Chair: Department of Science and Innovation (DSI)/National Research Foundation (NRF) South African Research Chairs Initiative (SARChI) for NanoElectrochemistry and Sensor Technology; Director: Sensor Lab, UWC Sensor Laboratories  
  • Prof Soraya P Malinga – Associate Professor and Co-Director: Joint Research Centre for Water, Environmental Science and Technology, Department (Dept) of Chemical Sciences, University of Johannesburg (UJ) 
  • Prof Khumbulani Mpofu – Chair: DSI/NRF SARChI Chair in Future Transport Manufacturing Technologies; Gibela Research Chair: Manufacturing and Skills Development; Founder and Board Member: Rail Manufacturing Centre for Entrepreneurship Rapid Incubator, Tshwane University of Technology (TUT); and also in the Researcher and the Special Annual Theme categories
  • Prof Patience Mthunzi-Kufa – Research Group Head for Biophotonics and Manager (Photonics Centre) – Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR); Professor Extraordinarius: University of South Africa (UNISA); and also in the Researcher and the Management categories
  • Prof Samuel O Oluwafemi – Professor and Project Leader: Nanomaterials Synthesis and Applications Laboratory, Dept of Chemical Sciences, UJ; and also in the Researcher category
  • Prof Claudia Polese – Associate Professor: Aerospace Manufacturing and Design; Head: Aeronautical Engineering Stream; Deputy Director: African Research Universities Alliance Centre of Excellence in Materials, Energy and Nanotechnology; Advisory Aerospace Research Director: National Aerospace Centre, Wits  
  • Prof Sudesh Sivarasu – Chair: DSI/NRF SARChI Chair in Biomedical Engineering and Innovation; Director: Biomedical Engineering Research Centre; Head: University of Cape Town (UCT) MedTech, UCT; and also in the Researcher category*  

Sponsor: WRC since 2017

  • Prof John G Annandale – Group Leader: Mine Water Irrigation Research Group, Dept of Plant and Soil Sciences, University of Pretoria (UP)  
  • Prof Timothy Dube – Director: Institute for Water Studies, University of the Western Cape (UWC); Adjunct Professor: United Nations University, Flores, Germany; and also in the Researcher category
  • Prof Ajay K Mishra – Group Leader: Research Area “Nanomaterials and Wastewater”; Professor: Dept of Chemistry, Durban University of Technology (DUT) 
  • Dr Bimo Abraham Nkhata – Senior Lecturer: Centre for Environmental Management, University of the Free State (UFS)
  • Prof Gordon O’Brien – Associate Professor: Ecology; Programme Leader: “Rivers of Life”, University of Mpumalanga (UMP);  and also in the Researcher category 
  • Dr Marco van Dijk – Senior Lecturer: Dept of Civil Engineering, UP  

 

Sponsor: SAMRC

  • Dr June Fabian Director: University of the Witwatersrand (Wits) Donald Gordon Medical Research Institute; Post-doctoral Researcher; Co-Lead: Clinical Research Platform: SAMRC/Wits Rural Public Health and Health Transitions Research Unit; Lecturer: Department (Dept) of Internal Medicine, School of Clinical Medicine, Faculty of Health Sciences, Wits  
  • Prof Shahida Moosa – Head: Medical Genetics, Tygerberg Academic Hospital; Associate Professor: Medical Genetics, Division of Molecular Biology and Human Genetics, Stellenbosch University (SU); and also in the Emerging Researcher category* 
  • Prof Leigh van den Heuvel – Specialist Psychiatrist: Tygerberg Hospital; Associate Professor: Dept of Psychiatry, Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences, SU; and also in the Emerging Researcher category* 
  • Prof Aneesa VankerAssociate Professor and Paediatric Pulmonologist, Red Cross War Memorial Children’s Hospital; SAMRC Post-doctoral Clinician Fellowship, University of Cape Town (UCT)

Sponsor: TIA

  • Advanced Polymer and Composites Group, Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) – Dr Maya J John, Principal Researcher and Team Leader 
  • Prof Linda Godfrey – Manager: Circular Innovation South Africa, Principal Scientist: Circular Economy, CSIR; Extraordinary Professor: Faculty of Natural and Agricultural Sciences, North-West University (NWU) 
  • Dr Schalk Grobbelaar – Senior Lecturer and Chairperson: York Timbers Chair in Wood Structural Engineering for a Sustainable Built Environment and African Bio-economy, Department (Dept) of Engineering and Technology Management, University of Pretoria (UP)
  • Prof Sandy-Lynn Steenhuisen – Associate Professor and Subject Head: Dept of Plant Sciences, Faculty of Natural and Agricultural Sciences, Qwaqwa Campus, University of the Free State (UFS)

NEW Sponsor: SDCfA

  • Prof Nithaya Chetty Dean: Science, University of the Witwatersrand (Wits); Vice-President: International Union for Pure and Applied Physics, Membership and Development  
  • Prof Irvy (Igle) Gledhill Visiting Adjunct Professor: School of Mechanical, Industrial and Aeronautical Engineering, Wits  
  • Prof Felix Maringe Visiting Professor: Wits School of Education; Deputy Vice-Chancellor: Institutional Development, Research and Innovation, University of Kigale, Rwanda 
  • Digital Library Services, University of Cape Town (UCT) – Ibali: Digital Collections, UCT – Digital Scholarship Specialist: Dr Sanjin Muftić
  • Inter-University Institute for Data Intensive Astronomy (IDIA),  a partnership of the Universities of Cape Town (UCT), Western Cape (UWC), and Pretoria (UP) – Interim Director: Prof Patrick Woudt, Department of Astronomy, UCT; and also in the Innovation: Corporate Organisation and the Special Annual Theme categories*
  • uLwazi Node, South African Environmental Observation Network (SAEON) Open Data Platform, National Research Foundation (NRF) – Manager: Mr Leo Chiloane
  • Inter-University Institute for Data Intensive Astronomy, a partnership of the Universities of Cape Town (UCT), Western Cape (UWC), and Pretoria (UP) – Prof Patrick Woudt, Interim Director: Department of Astronomy, UCT; and also in the Data for Research and the Special Annual Theme categories*
  • Nuclear Medicine Research Infrastructure NPC – Chief Executive Officer and President: Prof Mike Sathekge
  • Research and Development Innovation Team, Diagnostic Innovation Hub, Faculty of Health Sciences, University of the Witwatersrand (Wits) – Divisional Executive Director: Prof Wendy Stevens

Sponsor: NIPMO since 2019

  • Environmental Engineering Programme (Pty) Ltd – Director: Prof Anthony Turton
  • Jonker Sailplanes (Pty) Ltd – Co-Founder, Shareholder and Director: Prof Attie Jonker, School of Mechanical Engineering, North-West University (NWU)
  • Khepri Biosciences Team – CEO: Mr Bandile Dlabantu
  • Prof Ryan Blumenthal – Senior Specialist Forensic Pathologist and Associate Professor: Department of Forensic Medicine, University of Pretoria (UP) 
  • Dr Zoleka N P Filander – Deep Sea Researcher: Dept of Forestry, Fisheries and the Environment (DFFE); and also in the Emerging Researcher category* 
  • Prof Jennifer Fitchett – Professor: Physical Geography, University of the Witwatersrand (Wits) 
  • Ms Shakira Hoosain – Campaign Strategist and Senior Copywriter, UP 
  • Prof Sylvester Mpandeli – Executive Manager: Water Use, Water Research Commission (WRC); Vice-President: International Commission on Irrigation and Drainage; Adjunct Professor: University of Venda (UNIVEN); and also in the Management category* 
  • AIM (Actuaries in the Making): Learning Solutions – Virtual Vac Work Programme, Co-Founder: Ms Pamela Hellig 
  • GRIT Lab Africa – Founder and Chairman: Prof Abejide Ade-Ibijola 
  • Jembi Health Systems NPC –  Founder and Chief Executive Officer: Dr Christopher Seebregts 
  • OLICO Maths Education – Director: Maths Education, Dr Lynn Bowie 
  • Inter-University Institute for Data Intensive Astronomy (IDIA), a partnership of the Universities of Cape Town (UCT), Western Cape (UWC), and Pretoria (UP) – Prof Patrick Woudt, Interim Director: Department (Dept) of Astronomy, UCT; and also in the Data for Research and the Innovation: Corporate Organisation categories* 
  • Dr Michelle Lochner Senior Lecturer: Dept of Physics and Astronomy, University of the Western Cape (UWC); Staff Scientist: South African Radio Astronomy Observatory (SARAO); and also in the Researcher category* 
  • Prof Deshen Moodley Chair: Dept of Science and Innovation (DSI)/National Research Foundation (NRF)-UCT South African Research Chairs Initiative (SARChI) Chair in Artificial Intelligence Systems; Co- Director: Centre for Artificial Intelligence Research, Dept of Computer Science, UCT; and also in the Researcher category*  
  • Prof Khumbulani Mpofu DSI/NRF SARChI Chair in Future Transport Manufacturing Technologies; Gibela Research Chair: Manufacturing and Skills Development; Founder and Board Member: Rail Manufacturing Centre for Entrepreneurship Rapid Incubator, Tshwane University of Technology (TUT); and also in the Researcher and the Engineering Research Capacity Development categories

NSTF-South32 Awards

SPONSORS AND PARTNERS

The NSTF welcomes collaboration with other organisations, such as those they have been in partnerships with for many years:

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