Shabir Madhi is Dean of Faculty of Health Sciences and Professor of Vaccinology at the University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, South Africa; and co-founder and co-Director of the African Leadership Initiative for Vaccinology Expertise (ALIVE). Professor Madhi completed his undergraduate and postgraduate training at the University of the Witwatersrand, qualifying as a paediatrician in 1996 and obtaining his PhD in 2003.
He currently also holds the positions of Director of the South African Medical Research Council Vaccines and Infectious Diseases Analytics Research Unit. He served as the immediate-past Director of the National Institute for Communicable Diseases (2011-2017), and currently serves on the South African National Advisory Group on Immunisation and is member of the World Health Organisation Strategic Advisory Group of Experts on Immunization (SAGE) sine 2019.
He has co-authored over 550 scientific publications since 1997 and has supervised 25 PhD students. His research has focused on the epidemiology and clinical development of lifesaving vaccines against pneumonia and diarrhoeal disease. More recently he has focused on vaccines being developed for immunisation of pregnant women for the benefit of the women and their young infants. His research has been pivotal for informing World Health Organisation recommendations on the use of the lifesaving pneumococcal conjugate vaccine, rotavirus vaccine and influenza vaccination of pregnant women. He led the first two COVID-19 vaccines undertaken on the African continent, both in South Africa, and remains involved in the evaluation on the next generation of COVID-19 vaccines.