South African Young Academy of Science

SAYAS Members

International Linkages

Public Engagement




3rd Worldwide Meeting of Young Academies 2017



New SAYAS ExCo 2019

We wish to congratulate the new Executive Committee (ExCo) for 2018/2019 who were elected at the 2018 Annual General Meeting (AGM) which was held at the University of Fort Hare (UFH), East London campus on 16-17 October, 2018. We wish them well for the year ahead. They are: Co-Chairs A/Prof Aliza le Roux, University of Free State and Prof Philani Moyo, (UFH) and the rest of the team – Prof Kanshukan Rajaratnam, University of Cape Town; Dr Fanelwa Ajayi, University of Western Cape and Dr Marde Helbig, University of Pretoria.

We also extend our gratitude to outgoing ExCo members A/Prof Makondelele Makatu, University of Venda and Dr Nosiphiwe Ngqwala, Rhodes University for their selfless service in the period 2017/2018.




Call for Applications

Academy of Science of South Africa – British Academy Early Career Research Collaboration Workshop
Gauteng, South Africa, 21-23 February 2019

The Academy of Science of South Africa and the British Academy are inviting applications from early career researchers in the humanities and social sciences to attend a research collaboration workshop on the broad theme of Urban Lives. The workshop aims to incentivise and establish engagement and collaboration between early career researchers from a broad range of disciplines within the humanities and social sciences in South Africa and the UK, encouraging the exchange of ideas across both disciplinary and national boundaries.

Access more Info at:

Deadline is Wednesday 14 November, 2018


New SAYAS Members 2018

The following new members were inaugurated at an awards ceremony held on 10 October.

Dr Fanelwa Ajayi is a Senior Lecturer at the Chemistry Department and a research leader at the Enzyme Sensor Laboratory, SensorLab at the University of the Western Cape. Her area of speciality is drug metabolism sensor.

Dr Tatenda Dalu is a Senior Lecturer, Department of Ecology and Resource Management at the University of Venda whose area of specialisation is plankton ecology.

Dr Sarah Fawcett is a Lecturer in the Department of Oceanography at University of Cape Town and specialises in marine biogeochemistry. She is a P-rated researcher by the NRF.

Dr Samson Khene is a Senior Lecture in Physical Chemistry at Rhodes University. His main field of research has been in the synthesis and spectroscopic characterisation of phthalocyanine complexes for their possible application as photosensitisers in photodynamic therapy, electrocatalysis and nonlinear optical material. He holds an NRF Y-rating.

Dr Pradeep Kumar is a Senior Lecturer of Pharmaceutics Wits Department of Pharmacy and Pharmacology, and a Senior Researcher at the Wits Advanced Drug Delivery Platform. Pradeep is also an inventor with four granted and 11 filed patents.

Dr Nhlanhla Mpofu is Director for Teaching, Learning and Programme Development as well as a Senior Lecturer at Sol Plaatje University, specialising in teacher education.

Prof Fulufhelo Nemavhola is an Associate Professor and Head of Department in the Department of Mechanical and Industrial Engineering at the University of South Africa and specialises in computational biomechanics.

Dr Tozama Qwebani-Ogunleye is Project Manager of Dihlare Pty Ltd. which provides a vehicle to authenticate traditional medicines in order to ultimately produce them for community consumption and is based at the Vaal University of Technology.

Dr Amy Slogrove is a paediatrician and epidemiologist in the position of Senior Lecturer at Stellenbosch University, Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences in the Department of Paediatrics and Child Health and is based at the Ukwanda Centre for Rural Health in Worcester, South Africa.

Dr Leyla Tavernaro-Haidarian is a media professional, communication specialist and postdoctoral research fellow in the School of Communication at University of Johannesburg.


SAYAS Food Security and Policy Workshop

SAYAS sought to engage with various partners in the Southern African Development Community (SADC) region in order to link young scientists and early career researchers to policy makers (and making) in order to strengthen the science-policy interface through a symbiotic relationship. It is hoped that such a relationship will better inform policies and assessments; at the same time, identify gaps and shortfalls in achievement of set goals so as to utilise science to find solutions. This engagement also sought to challenge young scientists to gear their research to be more responsive to the sustainable development goals (SDGs) by ensuring the accessibility of evidence-based ‘research.

Food security concerns are encapsulated within the SDGs, particularly 1, 2, 3, 4 and 12 that respectively deal with no poverty, zero hunger, good health and well-being, quality education and responsible consumption and production.

SAYAS hosted this workshop in partnership with the Mauritius Academy of Science and Tanzania Academy of Science. It was held in April 2018 in Gauteng.

Funding for the workshop was provided by the InterAcademy Partnership (IAP)-Carnegie project small grants scheme on ‘Harnessing science engineering and mathematics (SEM) to meet Africa’s challenges and the Oppenheimer Memorial Trust

The proceedings report is now available on the Publications page.


SAYAS Member wins the 2017 TWAS-ROSSA Regional young scientist prize

Dr Cletos Mapiye won the 2017 TWAS-ROSSA Regional young scientist prize in Agriculture and Food security. Dr Mapiye is a Senior Lecturer, Meat Science, Department of Animal Sciences at Stellenbosch University.

The prize is awarded to an outstanding young scientist who has made significant contributions to research, development and capacity building to improve sustainability of food and agricultural systems, food security and poverty reduction in the developing world. The prize is aligned to the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goal #2: end hunger, achieve food security and improved nutrition, and promote sustainable agriculture. It is also linked with the Science, Technology and Innovation Strategy for Africa (STISA) 2024 priority area 1, which is eradication of hunger and achieving food security. The prize has a Usd 2, 0000 cash award. Congratulations Cletos!