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Tshilidzi Marwala

Vice Chancellor and Principal, University of Johannesburg

Prof Marwala took office as Vice Chancellor and Principal on 1 January 2018. He had a distinguished tenure at UJ as the Deputy Vice-Chancellor of Research and Internationalisation from 2013, and was previously UJ's Executive Dean of the Faculty of Engineering and the Built Environment.

Prof Marwala has received in excess of 45 honours and awards, including the Order of Mapungubwe and was the first African engineer to be awarded the National Research Foundation's President's award. Notable other honours and awards include being the Carl and Emily Fuchs Chair of Systems and Control Engineering as well as the SARChI Chair of Systems Engineering at the University of the Witwatersrand. His academic qualifications include a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering (magna cum laude) from Case Western Reserve University (USA), a Master of Mechanical Engineering from the University of Pretoria and a Doctor of Philosophy degree in Engineering from Cambridge University. He completed a post-doctoral research associateship at the Imperial College (London) and a programme for Leadership Development at Harvard Business School. Prof Marwala is a registered professional engineer, a fellow of TWAS (The World Academy of Sciences), the Academy of Science of South Africa, the African Academy of Sciences, the South African Academy of Engineering, a senior member of the IEEE (the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers) and a distinguished member of the ACM (Association for Computing Machinery).

Prof Marwala's research interests are multi-disciplinary and include the theory and application of computational intelligence to engineering, computer science, finance, social science and medicine. As a B-rated researcher, he has published nine books, over 300 papers in journals, proceedings, book chapters and magazines and holds three international patents. He is an associate editor of the International Journal of Systems Science (Taylor and Francis Publishers) and has been a reviewer for more than 40 ISI journals.

His global network is wide and includes being a visiting scholar at Harvard University, at the University of California at Berkeley, at the Wolfson College of University of Cambridge and at Nanjing Tech University. Prof Marwala is also a member of the programming council of the Faculty of Electrical Engineering at the Silesian University of Technology (Poland).


  • 2013–present
    Deputy vice-chancellor, University of Johanesburg


  • 2000 
    University of Cambridge, PhD/Engineering

Grants and Contracts

  • 2014
    Deputy Vice-Chancellor, Research
    Funding Source:
    National Research Foundation


Order of Mapungubwe