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Science Forum South Africa (SFSA)

If COVID-19 is the 9/11 moment for global science advice, what needs to happen next? Read more

Invitation to Skills to prepare South Africa for future pandemics

When it comes to igniting conversations around science, the National Science and Technology Forum (NSTF) is proud of its [ ... ]

Distinguished Visiting Scholars

Prof Jim Mann has been Professor in Human Nutrition and Medicine at the University of Otago and Consultant Physician (Endocrinology) in Dunedin Hospital for the past 20 years.  For the preceding 15 years he lectured at the University of Oxford and worked as a Physician in the Radcliffe Infirmary.   He is also the Director of the Edgar National Centre for Diabetes Research and the WHO Collaborating Centre for Human Nutrition. His research and clinical work have principally been in the fields of lipids and carbohydrates as they relate to coronary heart disease and diabetes and in the field of obesity. He has been author and co-author of over 200 papers published in peer reviewed journals and written and edited several textbooks and popular books, most recently the “Essentials of Human Nutrition” (4th Edition soon to be published by Oxford University Press).

As Principal Investigator he was awarded the international Bristol-Myers Squibb/Mead Johnson Unrestricted Grant for Human Nutrition, was the third recipient of the University of Otago Distinguished Research Medal in 2002 and in 2004 he received the Sir Charles Hercus Medal of the Royal Society of New Zealand.  He was appointed a Companion of the New Zealand Order of Merit for services to Medicine in 2003.  He was also awarded the Distinguished Researcher Award from the Dunedin School of Medicine for 2005. He has been involved with national and international government and nongovernmental organisations (including WHO, IDF, IUNS, EASD and WCRF) in developing guideline development relating to diabetes, cardiovascular disease, cancer and nutrition.

Dr Tove Skutnabb-Kangas, guest researcher at the Department of Languages and Culture, University of Roskilde, Denmark and visiting professor at Åbo Akademi University, Department of Education, Vasa, Finland, had a bilingual upbringing in Finnish and Swedish in officially bilingual Finland. She has been actively involved with minorities' struggle for language rights for over five decades. Her main research interests are in linguistic human rights, linguistic genocide, linguicism (linguistically argued racism), bilingualism and multilingual education, linguistic imperialism and the subtractive spread of English, support for endangered languages, and the relationship between linguistic and cultural diversity and biodiversity. She was the Linguapax Award recipient and the Carl Axel Gottlund Award recipient, both in 2003.

She has written and/or edited around fifty books and monographs and around 400 book chapters and scientific articles in over thirty languages. She is on editorial boards of a dozen scientific journals. She has had visiting attachments at many universities around the world. Tove Skutnabb-Kangas has extensive teaching experience, mostly at universities but also elementary and special education (1 year of each) and vocational education (2 years while collecting materials for her first PhD) and Steiner school, both bilingual. She has worked for decades with Indigenous education (e.g. the Saami in all Nordic countries) and advised and trained educational authorities and politicians in many countries about multilingual education. She has worked extensively with and written for OSCE (High Commissioner on National Minorities), UNESCO, UN, and the UN Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues. She lives on a small ecological/organic farm in Denmark with husband Robert Phillipson.

Prof Louise Fresco

Prof Louise Fresco is President of the Executive Board of Wageningen University in the Netherlands (a position equivalent to our country’s Vice-Chancellor) and she is an internationally recognised scholar who works extensively in the field of sustainable development.

She is a member of the Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences (KNAW), a non-resident member of the Académie d’agriculture de France in Paris and the Royal Swedish Academy of Agriculture and Forestry in Stockholm, a corresponding member of the Real Academia de Ingeniería in Madrid and a member of the Royal Holland Society of Sciences and Humanities. Prof Fresco further holds a visiting professorship at the Institute of Earth Sciences at Stanford University and at the David and Lucile Packard Foundation in Palo Alto, in the United States. She also serves as a member of the Strategy Experts Panel of the Director-General of the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) of the United Nations.

Prof Zakri Hamid

Prof Zakri Hamid has a distinguished career in science as a researcher, educator, administrator and diplomat. He serves as the founding Chair at the Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES), as the Science Advisor to Malaysia's Prime Minister, and as one of 26 members of the United Nations Secretary-General Scientific Advisory Board. Among other positions, Hamid co-chairs the Secretariat of Malaysia's Global Science and Innovation Advisory Council, and chairs the National Professors Council, the Malaysian Biotechnology Corporation, the National Foresight Institute and the Malaysian Industry-Government Group for High Technology. Earlier positions included Co-Chair of the Board at the Millennium Ecosystem Assessment from July 2000 to 2005, Director of the Institute of Advanced Studies of the United Nations University from 2010 to 2008, and Deputy Vice-Chancellor at the National University of Malaysia (UniversitiKebangsaanMalaysia) from 1992 to 2000.

Prof Bengt Gustafsson

In addition to being a famous astrophysicist, an eloquent speaker and a gifted teacher, Bengt Gustafsson has worked and published in cross-disciplinary areas including research ethics, social responsibilities of science, science-religion interaction, science policy, science teaching and more. He has held posts as Professor in Stockholm and Uppsala Universities and is Corresponding Fellow at the Nordic Institute for Theoretical Physics.

Prof Gustafsson has held important positions within Sweden including that of Secretary General of the Advisory Council on Research of the Swedish Government, as a board member of the Swedish National Agency for Higher Education and on the Nobel Committee for Physics. He is a member of the Swedish Royal Academy of Science and of the Balzan Prize Committee.

Prof Gustafsson is well known for his popularisation of science, and astronomy in particular. He regularly participates in Swedish radio and TV programmes and has been involved in writing and performing two science theatre plays.  He has received the Lars Salvius Prize and the Nils Gustav Rosén Prize, the foremost Swedish award for popularization of science, in recognition of these activities.