- Professor Ahmed Bawa is currently the Chief Executive Officer – Universities South Africa. Until August 2010 he was a faculty member of the Department of Physics and Astronomy at Hunter College and a member of the doctoral faculty at the Graduate Center, City University of New York. He has previously, for about nine years, held the position of Deputy Vice-Chancellor at the University of Natal and then at the University of KwaZulu-Natal. He has served as the Program Officer for Higher Education in Africa with the Ford Foundation and during this time led and coordinated the Foundation’s African Higher Education Initiative. Ahmed Bawa holds a PhD in Theoretical Physics from the University of Durham. He served on a number of policy development teams in the post-1994 period in the areas of Science and Technology and Higher Education and was an inaugural member of the National Advisory Council on Innovation till 2002. He was awarded an honorary doctorate of Science by a top British University for his contribution towards Science and higher education in 2015. He was Vice-Chancellor and Principal of the Durban University of Technology since September 2010 until September 2016. He is Fellow of the Royal Society of South Africa as well as the Academy of Science of South Africa of which he was one of the inaugural vice-presidents. He also served as Chair of the Board of the Foundation for Research Development, and was Vice-Chair of the boards the Atomic Energy Corporation. He also served on the boards of Telkom and Sanlam. He serves on several international advisory boards. Prof Bawa hails from Seven Oaks, a town situated in the KZN Midlands. Prior to working abroad, he held the portfolio of Deputy Vice-Chancellor and Principal of University of KwaZulu Natal’s Durban-Westville campus. He holds an MSc degree from the University of Durban-Westville and a PhD from the University of Durham, UK. He has authored more than 30 articles published in prestigious international journals. He was also the former Chair of the Board of the National Research Foundation and a member of the National Advisory Council of Innovation. He is also one of the select few given access to the Large Hadron Collider in Switzerland, to work on a global project addressing fundamental questions of physics. This reinforces his outstanding global reputation and value. Prof Bawa gained experience in creating grants to assist universities across Africa while he held the portfolio of Programme Officer at the Ford Foundation. He also possesses a solid grasp of the South African higher education landscape and has contributed extensively to discourse on reshaping and transforming the sector.