New CEO: Water Research Commission
It is a great pleasure to welcome our new CEO Mr Dhesigen Naidoo. Mr Naidoo was appointed by Minister of Water and Environmental Affairs, Edna Molewa in consultation with the WRC Board and after a rigorous interview and selection process.
Naidoo brings with him a wealth of experience from the University and Government sectors. His appointment at the WRC comes after he has spent several years working for, among others, the Departments of Water Affairs and Forestry, Science and Technology, and Environmental Affairs and Tourism.
At the Department of Science and Technology (DST), Naidoo held the position of Deputy Director-General: International Co-operation and Resources, and was responsible for Government initiatives to mobilise and secure a net flow of scientific knowledge and resources into South Africa for the benefit of the South African science and technology community and society as a whole. While at the DST, Naidoo also worked as a Project Leader for the development of the Technology Innovation Agency. This was a special task assigned by the Minister to co-ordinate DST’s efforts to establish a public entity to bridge the innovation chasm and stimulate the development of a significant technology portfolio in the South African economy.
From 2001 to 2003 Naidoo occupied the position of Chief Director: Environmental Planning and Co-ordination, at the Department of Environmental Affairs and Tourism. Here he served as a head of planning and co-ordination for environmental management at national level. This role included dealing with issues of legislative reform, capacity building, environmental impact assessment and environmental information systems – including the compiling of national reports for international organisations such as the United Nations Commission for Sustainable Development (UNCSD).
In his most recent role before joining the Water Research Commission, Naidoo worked at the University of Pretoria (UP) as Director: Research and Innovation Support. At UP he was involved in managing the overall research portfolio of the University, providing strategic direction and support to the various faculties, schools and centres. Naidoo’s portfolio at UP also involved the establishment of the UP Technology Transfer Office and the UP Commercialization Office.
Naidoo has served on various Boards including the Board of the Water Research Commission, the SANBI Board Committee on Research and Development, the Board of the Africa Institute of South Africa, and the Board of Governors of the International Centre for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology.
Naidoo holds a B.Sc. in Chemistry and Biochemistry and B.Sc. Honours in Biochemistry from the University of Kwa-Zulu Natal, and an M.Sc. in Medicine from the University of Cape Town. He also holds a Post Graduate Diploma in Health Management from the University of Cape Town.
At the WRC Dhesigen will be responsible for building collaborative relationships with Government and other stakeholders, and for delivering high-level internal leadership in the WRC key strategic areas of Water Resource Management, Water-Linked Ecosystems, Water Utilisation in Agriculture, Water Use and Waste Management, Water-Centred Knowledge, Finance, Human Resources and Administration.
Professor Janine Adams, Chairperson of the Board at WRC says ‘Change is never easy but we know the excellent staff and teamwork at the WRC will provide the new CEO with the required support. The Board looks forward to future great achievements. Through strong leadership we know that the WRC will grow as the water research and knowledge hub of South Africa’.
Contact: Hlengiwe Cele, email firstname.lastname@example.org or tel. 012 3309006