Dr Max Price

Dr Max PriceAbout the Vice-Chancellor

The Vice-Chancellor is accountable to Council for the leadership of the university as a whole, and for determining the university's strategic goals, and ensuring their implementation. This includes accountability for the university's overall financial health, academic standing, transformation and social justice interventions.

He has executive oversight for Council accountability, fundraising and alumni initiatives, external relations, financial oversight, risk management and ceremonial functions.


Dr Max Price began his term of office as Vice-Chancellor of the University of Cape Town on 1 July 2008.

Previous to this appointment he spent two years as an independent consultant in the fields of public health, health policy, medical education, and human resources for health.

Dr Price was dean of the Faculty of Health Sciences at the University of the Witwatersrand from 1996 to 2006 and a member of the Wits senior executive team. As Dean, he spearheaded a series of transformation initiatives, including the Internal Reconciliation Commission. He established a new graduate entry medical programme, academic programmes in rural health, bioethics, sports medicine, emergency medicine, and biomedical sciences. He also founded South Africa's first university-owned private teaching hospital, and the first university research company.

He has an MBBCh degree from the University of the Witwatersrand which he obtained in 1979; a BA PPE (Oxon 1983); an MSc in Community Health from the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine; and a Diploma in Occupational Health from Wits. Other achievements and awards include the Rhodes Scholarship at Oxford University, Four Outstanding Young South Africans Award (1992), and Student Representative Council president.

Dr Price's professional work has included clinical work in hospitals and rural primary health care; he was a research fellow in health economics at the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine; a senior researcher and then director at the Centre for Health Policy at Wits University as well as a visiting Takemi Fellow in International Health at the Harvard School of Public Health from 1994 to 1995.

Dr Price served as Chair of the Ministerial Committee on Health Care Financing, and was a member of the WHO/FAO/UNDP Tropical Disease Research programme (TDR) special task force on impact of health financing reform on tropical diseases.

Dr Price has published extensively including 38 local and international refereed journal articles, over 100 other articles, and academic conference papers in health systems research, political economy of health; health economics and financing; privatisation and medical aids; rural health services; computer simulation modelling of health systems; medical education and human resources.

UCT Portfolio

The Vice-Chancellor is accountable to Council and to the Senate for the leadership of the university as a whole, and for determining the university's strategic goals in consultation with all relevant stakeholders, and ensuring their implementation. This includes accountability for the university's overall academic standing, financial health, transformation and social justice interventions. He has both direct responsibility for fundraising and public communication and oversight of the Executive Directors of Alumni and Development, and Communications and Marketing. He represents the university to its internal and external publics which includes many ceremonial functions. He has executive oversight for risk management.

Portfolio responsibilities

  • Strategic leadership
  • Public relations, communications
  • External relations – other universities – bilateral and networks, government, corporate, international
  • Fundraising
  • Council accountability
  • Institutional financial sustainability
  • Risk management
  • Transformation
  • Ceremonial functions

Departments and individual reporting lines to VC (11)

  • Deputy Vice-Chancellors (4)
  • Registrar
  • Executive Director – Finance
  • Executive Director – Communication & Marketing
  • Executive Director – Development & Alumni
  • Director – Office of the Vice-Chancellor
  • Director – Internal Audit
  • University Ombud (dotted line)

Committee membership

  • Council
  • Council Executive Committee
  • Senate (Chair)
  • Senate Executive Committee (Chair)
  • Senior Leadership Group (Chair)
  • University Strategy Forum (Chair)
  • VCMAG (Chair)
  • Resource Allocation Advisory Groups (RAAG)
  • University Development Committee (Chair)
  • University Transformation Advisory Committee (Chair)
  • Institutional Forum
  • University Finance Committee
  • Risk Management Committee (Chair)
  • University Audit Committee
  • University Development Committee (Chair)
  • Alumni Association Management Committee
  • University Foundation
  • Ukukhula Trust
  • Remuneration Committee
  • Joint Investment Committee
  • College of Fellows (Chair)
  • Admissions Committee
  • Teaching and Learning Committee
  • Academic Freedom Committee
  • Appointments Committee
  • Honorary Degrees Committee
  • Baxter Theatre Centre Board

Committees and networks outside UCT

  • Higher Education SA (HESA) (Deputy-chair)
  • HESA Exco
  • Worldwide Universities Network (WUN) (Chair)
  • Cape Higher Education Consortium (CHEC)
  • Southern African Regional Universities Association (SARUA)
  • World Economic Forum Global Universities Leaders? Forum
  • UCT Fund: USA (Board of Trustees)
  • UCT Fund: UK (Board of Trustees)
  • Mauerberger Foundation - Director
  • Association of African Universities (AAU)
  • Association of Commonwealth Universities (ACU)

Updated 28 November 2014.