Commerce: Professor Edwin Muchapondwa (acting)
Engineering & the Built Environment: Professor Alison Lewis
Health Sciences: Associate Professor Green-Thompson
Humanities: Associate Professor Shose Kessi
Law: Professor Danwood Chirwa
Science: Professor Maano Ramutsindela
Director, Graduate School of Business: Dr Catherine Duggan
Centre for Higher Education Development: Associate Professor Alan Cliff (interim)
Professor Edwin Muchapondwa has been appointed the acting dean of the Faculty of Commerce effective from 1 July 2021 and will serve in this role until a permanent appointment is made.
Professor Muchapondwa is a professor in the School of Economics, and formerly served as the head of department. He was the founding director of the Environmental Policy Research Unit (EPRU), and now remains within the centre as a Senior Research Fellow.
Professor Muchpondwa is a guest professor at Luleå University of Technology in Sweden. He participates in the Environment for Development (EfD) Initiative – a global network of environmental economics research centres solving the world’s most pressing environmental and development challenges. He serves on the EfD board and is chair of the EfD Quality Assurance Panel.
He is a member of the Green Growth Knowledge Platform (GGKP) Expert Working Group on Natural Capital, and is the country representative for South Africa at the European Association for Environmental and Resource Economists (EAERE).
His research deals with biodiversity conservation, community-based natural resource management, energy, and climate change. His research demonstrates the economic arguments for nature conservation, showing how greater protection of nature correlates with improvements in human welfare, and provides strategies to enhance nature conservation further. Professor Muchapondwa’s research has been published in international journals such as Ecological Economics, Environment and Development Economics, Environmental and Resource Economics, Journal of Development Studies, Natural Resource Modeling and World Development.
Professor Alison Lewis took up her position as the dean of the Faculty of Engineering & the Built Environment on 1 June 2015 and was appointed for a second five-year term in 2020.
Previously, Professor Lewis was the head of the Department of Chemical Engineering since 2013, and a professor of chemical engineering since 2007. She originally joined the department as a senior lecturer in 1996 after completing her PhD and a postdoctoral fellowship in the Water Research Group in UCT’s Department of Civil Engineering.
Professor Lewis is founder and director of the Crystallisation and Precipitation Research Unit. She has raised more than R64 million in funding for the unit since 2001, supervised 51 master’s and PhD students to graduation, published more than 145 international journal and conference papers, and has established an international research reputation. She received the National Science and Technology Forum’s Engineering Research Capacity Development Award in 2019; the African Water Leadership Award in 2016 and the National Research Foundation President’s ‘Champion of Transformation in Research’ Award in 2010 for her active involvement in training, fostering and mentoring black and female students.
Amongst other achievements, Professor Lewis won the Distinguished Woman Scientist award in both 2012 and 2015 from the Ministry of Science and Technology for her outstanding contribution to building South Africa’s scientific and research knowledge base.
Professor Lewis has also been the university orator since 2010 and has prepared and delivered orations for recipients of honorary degrees, ranging from actor Antony Sher, artist William Kentridge and former Reserve Bank governor, Tito Mboweni, to esteemed specialist in infectious diseases, Salim Abdool Karim.
Since 2018, Professor Lewis has been the convenor of the Vice Chancellor’s Futures Think Tank, a group that is looking at how UCT (and the way we do our work) should change to meet the challenges of a rapidly changing world.
During her undergraduate studies, Professor Lewis was the education officer for the 1984/85 UCT Students Representative Council. She graduated from UCT with a BSc (ChemEng) in 1985 and an MSc (ChemEng) in 1987. After graduating she worked as a process engineer for South African Nylon Spinners. During this time she was the editor of Upfront, the journal of the Cape Democrats, a United Democratic Front affiliate.
Professor Lewis is a professional engineer, registered by the Engineering Council of South Africa. She is also a fellow of the Institution of Chemical Engineers (FIChemE), the South African Institute of Chemical Engineers, the South African Academy of Engineering, the South African Institute of Mining and Metallurgy and UCT’s College of Fellows. Professor Lewis is also a member of the Academy of Science of South Africa.
Associate Professor Lionel Green-Thompson was appointed as dean, with effect from 15 March 2020.
He has held multiple roles at the University of the Witwatersrand (Wits), including being the assistant dean for Teaching, Learning and Undergraduate Affairs in the Faculty of Health Sciences. He was also the clinical coordinator for the MBBCh degree in the Centre for Health Science Education from 2004, during which time he engaged in numerous student development initiatives, including the supervision of MMed (Anaesthesia) students.
He graduated from Wits with an MBBCh in 1988. He is a Fellow of the College of Anaesthetists of the Colleges of Medicine of South Africa. He obtained his MMed (Anaesthesia) at Wits in 2011 and completed a two-year Wits Carnegie Clinical PhD Fellowship.
He was national chairperson for the South African Association of Health Educationalists for the 2010 to 2013 triennium and chaired the national conference held at Wits in 2010 titled “Making Education Matter”.
Associate Professor Green-Thompson is an occasional reviewer for academic journals such as the South African Journal of Surgery, South African Journal of Psychiatry, South African Journal of Anaesthesia and Analgesia, African Journal of Health Professions Education and, internationally, Medical Teacher and BMC Medical Education. He is a member of the Research Committee of the Association for Medical Education in Europe for the term 2018 to 2022.
He is currently the chair of the network for Medical Education in Resource Constrained Situations. In 2019 he was nominated to the board of directors of the network Towards Unity for Health.
Associate Professor Shose Kessi has been appointed as the dean of the Faculty of Humanities, where she has been the acting dean since 1 March 2019.
Currently serving as associate professor in the Department of Psychology and having been deputy dean of transformation in the Faculty of Humanities since 2018, she is also the founder and the first chairperson of the UCT Black Academic Caucus. She was appointed to the Special Executive Task Team in 2016 and the University Strategic Forum a year later.
Associate Professor Kessi is also a member of the University Employment Equity Forum, the Transformation Forum, the Institutional Forum and the Senate. At faculty level, she is part of the Faculty Executive, the Humanities Staffing Committee and the Humanities Dean’s Advisory Committee. She has served as the chair of the Humanities Transformation Committee since 2016.
Her qualifications include a PhD in Social Psychology and an MSc in Organisational and Social Psychology with distinction (both from the London School of Economics and Political Science), with her Postgraduate Diploma in Business Administration having been obtained at the Wits Business School.
Professor Danwood Chirwa has been appointed Dean of the Faculty of Law with effect from 1 January 2019.
Professor Chirwa holds a PhD from the University of the Western Cape, an LLM from the University of Pretoria, and an LLB (Hons) from the University of Malawi. Currently, he holds a full professorship at the University of Cape Town. Over the last 14 years, Prof Chirwa has taught Administrative Law, International Human Rights, Children's Rights, and Constitutional Law. He has played a key role in curriculum development and the administration of the human rights post-graduate programmes and has gained considerable experience as a postgraduate supervisor at both the LLM and doctoral levels.
Professor Maano Ramutsindela, Deputy Dean of Operations and Professor in the Department of Environmental and Geographical Science, has been appointed as the new Dean of the Faculty of Science. He will take up his position on 1 March 2019.
Professor Ramutsindela has served the science faculty in critical committees such as the Ad Hominem Committee, Committee of Assessors and the Executive Committee. He chaired the Faculty of Science Transformation Advisory Committee and served as an elected member of the UCT Council and the Senate Executive Committee. As a member of the Senate Committee of 12, he chaired and participated in committees that handled conflicts. He represented UCT in the Worldwide Universities Network (WUN) and is the founding co-chair of the WUN Global Africa Group.
Having obtained his PhD in Geography from Royal Holloway, University of London, Professor Ramutsindela has gone on to receive the NRF President’s Award, an appointment as Fellow of the Society of South African Geographers, and elected member of the Academy of Science of South Africa. He is the recipient of the NRF Award for the Transformation of the Science Cohort.
Dr Catherine Duggan has been appointed as the new director of the University of Cape Town’s Graduate School of Business (GSB) effective from 1 September 2020.
Dr Duggan is an accomplished academic who brings more than 20 years of work in Africa, as well as extensive experience at top global business schools, to the role. She joins UCT from the African Leadership University School of Business (ALUSB) in Rwanda, where she is currently the vice dean for strategy and research. At ALUSB she spearheaded the development of a highly successful new Master of Business Administration programme that blends online and in-person learning and draws students from more than 15 African countries each year. She also chaired the school’s expanding executive education and continuous learning activities and served as faculty lead for its business development and student recruitment activities.
Before joining ALUSB, Dr Duggan served on the faculty of the Harvard Business School (HBS), where she taught courses on political economy and leadership in the MBA and executive education programmes. She was a visiting scholar at Saïd Business School at Oxford University, where she taught a popular course on Doing Business in Africa. Dr Duggan has also taught in executive programmes for INSEAD Business School, recently serving as academic co-chair of a joint ALUSB-INSEAD executive programme on Strategic Leadership in Africa.
Dr Duggan’s expertise focuses on institutional development and financial sector regulation in sub-Saharan Africa, with a particular focus on the ways that countries can build institutions to support economic development. She has written numerous cases on business in Africa, including cases based on original research in South Africa, Nigeria, Kenya, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Zimbabwe, Rwanda, Uganda, Liberia and Guinea-Bissau, spanning topics as varied as environmental sustainability, social enterprise, the changing role of business in society, the benefits of diversity in corporations, and the challenges of doing business in changing political and economic contexts.
With such massive experience garnered from over two decades of working in Africa, Dr Duggan joins UCT at a time when we are striving to not only be the best in Africa, but also the best for Africa. UCT’s vision for being a socially responsive university translates into research and teaching that focuses on producing African solutions for African problems, and into collaborations we develop with other researchers across Africa.
Associate Professor Alan Cliff has been appointed interim dean of the Centre for Higher Education Development (CHED) from 1 December 2018. He will continue to serve in an acting capacity until 31 December 2021.
Associate Professor Cliff is substantively located in the Centre for Innovation in Teaching and Learning (CILT) in CHED where he is co-ordinator of the Staff Development cluster. He obtained his BA, BEd and MEd qualifications from UCT and his PhD from the University of Auckland. Associate Professor Cliff has extensive experience teaching courses in educational psychology, educational assessment and adult education to mostly postgraduate education students. He convenes courses in educational assessment and evaluation for students at certificate, diploma and master’s levels. He has published in international journals including Higher Education, Language Matters and Southern African Linguistics and Applied Language Studies and the South African Journal of Higher Education.
Associate Professor Cliff has supervised master’s and PhD students in areas such as the development of literacies practices in disciplinary contexts; the validation of standardised admissions tests; the use of alternate admissions tests for admission and placement purposes; and factors that facilitate the development of electronic systems literacy in the workplace. He has contributed to research on the alignment between curriculum and student assessment. Regionally, Associate Professor Cliff teaches courses on assessment design and academic literacy. His current research interests are in the use of theories and principles of Dynamic Assessment to facilitate student learning; and in the processes of staff development as ‘literacies practices’ and induction into professional learning communities. Associate Professor Cliff contributes to the development of educational assessment policy in the further and higher education sectors nationally.