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

Food Production (INNOVATION)

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.

Food processing (INNOVATION)

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

Food Distribution

Understanding the national and global food system (SYSTEMS)

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.

Understanding the national and global food system (SYSTEMS)

Now based at UP, 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

Shelves, Baskets and Plates (PLATES)

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.

Child malnutrition in South Africa (CHILDREN)

UWC based Professor Julian May, is director of the CoE in Food Security, and the UNESCO Chair in African Food Systems. His current research focuses on food security, childhood deprivation and malnutrition.

Food Governance

Safe food for the food insecure (SAFETY)

Professor Lise Korsten is co-director of the CoE in Food Security, and is based at UP. Her research focuses on complementary fields of postharvest technology and food safety related to international trade in fresh produce requirements.

Governance and policy reform (POLICY)

Bruno Losch is currently co-director of the Center for the Study of Governance Innovation (GovInn), based at UWC and lead political economist at Cirad. His research focuses on rural studies, family agriculture, public policies, and the political economy of development.

Mellon Funded Programmes: Food Contestation

Ethics Values (SYMBOLS)

This programme is led by Professor Ernst Conradie, Senior Professor in the Department of Religion and Theology at UWC. 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 (POLITICS)

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.