The Durban University of Technology (DUT) is honoured to announce that the Insurance Sector Education and Training Authority (InSeta), has signed an agreement to fund a University Research Chair: Digitalisation as well as a Centre of Excellence over the next two years.
DUT is proud to announce the appointment of Dr Surendra Thakur (Colin) as the InSeta Research Chair: Digitalisation.
Incumbent Chair, Dr Thakur said InSeta has some novel implementation strategies that they wish to implement. “Our partnership is aimed at firstly mitigating the 4IR retrenchment wave through research training, retraining, and cross training. A Centre of Excellence will be implemented with concepts such as Data Science and Artificial Intelligence services at the heart. My previous five commission-research projects in this space has equipped me with the skills to deliver this project,” he said.
DUT’s Vice-Chancellor and Principal Professor Thandwa Mthembu, said: “I welcome this initiative and congratulate Dr Thakur and his team. I urge you to reduce the 4IR notion into usable and exploitable products.”
Professor Sibusiso Moyo: Deputy Vice Chancellor: Research, Innovation and Engagement, is also excited about Dr Thakur’s appointment. “I am especially pleased, as this further increases DUT’s niche focus areas, while this type of mixed-mode partnership is what universities should and must attract.”
InSeta CEO Nadia Starr said: “We chose to work with DUT so that the knowledge through the Doctoral and Masters programmes becomes institutional. We and the nation will grow through this.”
The partnership fits symbiotically with the DUT mission of innovation through external engagement. InSeta and DUT will collaborate in the areas of research; postgraduate support and development; and training. The Research Chair and Centre of Excellence further seeks to promote and enhance innovation in the areas on education and technology.
The DUT face of this partnership, Dr Thakur, is an experienced academic who is also a member of the Ministerial Task Team (MTT) on 4IR. He also currently holds the BankSeta Research Chair in Digitalisation (2018-2020). Dr Thakur is recognised as an expert on e-voting from the IEC and UNDP. He has authored/co-authored over 23 academic research papers in various academic journals. He also regularly writes thought-provoking opinion pieces related to technology and our modern world which can be accessed online.
Pictured: Dr Surendra Thakur