Kholani Mbhiza is a Program Officer at the Academy of Science of South Africa and Project Officer for TWAS-SAREP.
He is a seasoned Stakeholder Relations Practitioner, a self-starter with extended and strong background in communication management, conceptualising & creating marketing collateral, website administration, administratative and secretariat duties, stakeholder Management, branding, events management, and possess experience in project management. He has a BA Honours Degree in Communication, specialising in Digital comms, Corporate Comms and Advertising. Moreover, Kholani is also a Project Officer responsible for coordinating the activities of The World Academy of Sciences Sub-Saharan Africa Regional Partner (TWAS-SAREP). He is also responsible for advocating for the inclusion of African emerging scientists in science policy related issues and engagements with organisations in the system of innovation, governments, science academies, and regional science organisations. Kholani is an alumni of the International Network for Government Science Advice (INGSA) and also an alumni of the AAAS-TWAS Summer Course on Science Diplomacy. He has represented ASSAf at international scientific conferences in Benin, Egypt, Ghana, India, Italy, Kenya, Madagascar, Sudan, Namibia and Eswatini. Lastly, he has worked with various and diverse stakeholders and served at several committees responsible for convening, organising and executing scientific events in Africa and overseas.
Dr Melusi Thwala is a Manager of the Science Advisory and Strategic Partnerships at ASSAf and the TWAS-SAREP Coordinator
Dr Melusi Thwala holds a PhD from the University of Johannesburg and specialises in environmental water quality effects assessment and monitoring. He is the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) Keizo Obuchi Fellow and undertook the research fellowship at Clemson University: Centre for Environmental Toxicology, United States of America. Dr Thwala is a member of the Department of Science and Innovation (DSI) Platform for Nano Health Safety and Environment Risk Assessment, responsible for leading the Water Node of the Platform. He is a committee member of the South African Bureau of Standards (SABS)/TC147/SC205 working group on aquatic toxicity testing. He is a South African Council for Natural Scientific Professions (SACNASP) registered natural scientist in the Aquatic Domain, is Guest Editor for Springer Nature: Applied Sciences journal and is in the Editorial Board of Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry. He manages the Science Advisory and Strategic Partnerships of the Academy of Science of South Africa (ASSAf) and he was previously Principal Scientist at the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR), South Africa. Dr Thwala is a Research Fellow at Nelson Mandela University as well as the University of the Free State.