Principal Investigators

Tags: food security, Food safety, food politics, ethics and values, value chains, food governance, food system, health and nutrition, food consumption, food distribution, food creation, production, markets, livelihoods, innovation, sustainability

Our Programmes are headed by Programme Principal Investigators (PPIs) who are leading scholars in their field of study. The PPIs are drawn from the Hosts and consortium partners based on relative strengths in each area. Their roles are to construct the research agenda and to be mediators who bridge gaps and manage diverse teams.

Food Creation

Innovation and Technology

Professor Ndiko Ludidi is head of UWC's Department of Biotechnology. His reasearch focuses on research on the genetic control of plant responses to salinity and drought stress.

Processing and Preservation

Associate Professor Naushad Emmambux is based at the University of Pretoria’s Department of Food Science. His research focuses on African food biopolymers for nutrition and functional use.

Food Distribution

Value Chains

Professor Andries du Toit is Director of PLAAS at UWC. His research focuses on developing a critical understanding of the politics of knowledge production in the government of poverty and marginal livelihoods.

Markets and Livelihoods

Now based at the University of Pretoria, Professor Frans Swanepoel is a member of the Academy of Science of SA (ASSAf), and currently leads its consensus study to revitalise agricultural education and training in South Africa.

Food Consumption

Health and Nutrition

UWC's Professor Rina Swart is a registered dietician as well as a registered nutritionist with the HPCSA. Her research focuses on the prevention of malnutrition through nutrition programs.

Consumer Choice and Behaviour

Emeritus Professor David Sanders is the founding Director of the School of Public Health at UWC. He is internationally recognised as an advocate for primary health care and health equity in Africa.

Food Governance

Control and Safety

Professor Lise Korsten teaches at the Department of Microbiology and Plant Pathology at the University of Pretoria. Her research focuses on complementary fields of postharvest technology and food safety related to international trade in fresh produce requirements.

Governance and Policy

Prof Lorenzo Fioramonti is Professor of Political Economy and founding director of GovInn at the University of Pretoria. His research focuses on governance processes and innovations, in particular regional integration, including environmental degradation and climate change.

Mellon Funded Programmes: Food Contestation

Ethics Values

This programme is led by Professor Ernst Conradie, Senior Professor in the Department of Religion and Theology at the University of the Western Cape. The objective of this programme of research is to examine the symbolic construction of food consumption in the context of food insecurity.

Food Politics and Cultures

This programme is led by Professor Desiree lewis of UWC's Department of Women and Gender Studies. By focusing primarily on food cultures and politics in South Africa, this project seeks to strengthen analysis of food, society and culture in the global South and the global North.

SA-UK Bilateral Research Chair in Social Protection in Food Security (SARChI)

This programme is led by Dr Stephen Devereux, former Associate Editor of the journal ‘Food Security’, and founding Director of the ‘Centre for Social Protection’ at the Institute of Development Studies at the University of Sussex, UK. This programme focuses on why food insecurity in South Africa remains so high, despite the comprehensive social protection system as well as how social protection can help address hunger.