The Vice-Chancellor and Principal of the University of Johannesburg, Professor Tshilidzi Marwala, has been appointed as the seventh Rector of the United Nations University (UNU) in Tokyo, Japan. He is the first African to hold this position.
UNU is a global think tank and postgraduate education organization headquartered in Japan. Its mission is to contribute, through collaborative research and education, to efforts to address pressing global issues of human survival, development and well-being of concern to the United Nations, its peoples and States. members.
Professor Marwala is sure to make South Africa and the African continent proud by leading the UNU to greater heights, according to South Africa’s Minister of International Relations (DIRCO), Dr Naledi Pandor .
“I wish Professor Marwala well as the new Rector of the United Nations University. I have the utmost confidence that under his leadership the university will further contribute, through collaborative research and education, to efforts to address pressing global issues of survival, development and well-being. -human beings of concern to the United Nations, its peoples and Member States. said Minister Pandor.
University of Johannesburg (UJ) Council President Mike Teke also wished Marwala well.
Congratulating Marwala on his appointment, Teke said, “On behalf of UJ, we are proud of Professor Marwala for taking the reins of leadership as the first African to take on this role. A university relies on the various components that come together to make it work and we have the right systems and people in place to ensure that this transition is smooth. We congratulate Professor Marwala on this outstanding achievement and we are proud that one of our own has achieved such an honor”.
Marwala will succeed Professor David M Malone of Canada, who has served since 2013.
Previously, Professor Marwala was Deputy Vice-Chancellor for Research and Internationalization, a position he held since 2013. He also served as Executive Dean of the Faculty of Engineering and the Built Environment from 2009 to 2013.
Between 2003 and 2008, the professor was a visiting scholar at Harvard University, University of California, Berkeley, Wolfson College, University of Cambridge, and Nanjing Tech University.
He holds a PhD Honors in Artificial Intelligence and Engineering from the University of Cambridge, an MSc in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Pretoria and a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering (magna cum laude) from Case Western Reserve University. He is a Chartered Professional Engineer, Fellow of the World Academy of Sciences, South African Academy of Sciences, African Academy of Sciences and South African Academy of Engineering.
Marwala is also a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, a Senior Fellow of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineering, and a Distinguished Fellow of the Association for Computing Machinery.
The decision to appoint Professor Marwala follows consultations with the Director-General of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), Audrey Azoulay and, with her agreement, the Secretary-General of the United Nations United, António Guterres.