College of Agriculture, Engineering
and Science (CAES)

Research

Research Leadership

Knowledge leaders are essential in the rapidly-changing and information-rich world of today. UKZN prides itself as being a research-led institution and for the past three years has been rated Number 1 in South Africa in terms of research output. Research underpins the College, which boasts the highest research output of the entire university. Our research division is overseen by our Dean of Research and five Academic Leaders.

Prof Neil Koorbanally

Prof Neil Koorbanally

Dean of Research
Koorbanally@ukzn.ac.za | 031 260 3189

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Academic Leaders of Research

Research experts

NRF A-Rated Researchers

A-rated researchers are unequivocally recognised by their peers as leading international scholars in their respective fields, for the high quality and impact of recent research outputs. Acquiring an NRF rating generates considerable acknowledgement and respect for the individual researchers as well as their institutions.

Prof Fernando Albericio

Prof Fernando Albericio

NRF A-Rated Researcher
albericio@ukzn.ac.za | 031 260 3097

Prof Steven Johnson

Prof Steven Johnson

NRF A-Rated Researcher
johnsonsd@ukzn.ac.za | 033 260 5148

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Prof Craig Packer

Prof Craig Packer

NRF A-Rated Researcher
packer@umn.edu | +44 612 625 5729

Prof Robert Gous

Prof Robert Gous

NRF A-Rated Researcher
gous@ukzn.ac.za | 031 260 6805

SARChI Chairs

The South African Research Chairs Initiative (SARChI) was established in 2006 by the Department of Science and Technology (DST) and the National Research Foundation (NRF). 

It is designed to attract and retain excellence in research and innovation at South African public universities through the establishment of Research Chairs at public universities in South Africa with a long-term investment trajectory of up to fifteen years. There are the SARChI research chairs in our College.

Prof Annegret Stark

Prof Annegret Stark

Chair of Sugarcane Biorefining
StarkA@ukzn.ac.za | 031 260 3383

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Prof Cristina Trois

Prof Cristina Trois

Chair of Waste and Climate Change
troisc@ukzn.ac.za | 031 260 3065

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Prof  Francesco Petruccione

Prof Francesco Petruccione

Chair of Quantum Information Processing and Communication
petruccione@ukzn.ac.za | 031 260 2770

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Prof Paramu Mafongoya

Prof Paramu Mafongoya

Chair of Agronomy and Rural Development
mafongoya@ukzn.ac.za | 033 260 6247

Prof Colleen Downs

Prof Colleen Downs

Chair of Ecosystem Health and Biodiversity
downs@ukzn.ac.za | 033 260 5126

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Prof Fanie van Heerden

Prof Fanie van Heerden

Chair of Chemistry of Indigenous Medicinal Plants
vanheerdenf@ukzn.ac.za | 033 260 5886

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Prof Onisimo Mutanga

Prof Onisimo Mutanga

Chair of Land Use Planning and Managementy
Mutangao@ukzn.ac.za | 033 260 5779

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Directory of Experts

Knowledge leaders are essential in the rapidly-changing and information-rich world of today. Research underpins the College, which boasts the highest research output of the entire university. 

We have a number of world-class researchers who are experts in their field and are among UKZN’s top published researchers.

NRF GUIDELINES

Tips for completing your NRF rating application

NRF proposal workshop

Research Groups

Student Research

PhD Graduates

We celebrated our PhD graduates in a series of virtual ceremonies.  The College boasts a total of 92 doctoral candidates, 44 at the Pietermaritzburg campus and 48 at our Howard College and Westville campuses, with 29 coming from Agricultural, Earth and Environmental Science; 22 from Life Sciences; 15 from Mathematics, Statistics and Computer Science; 12 from Chemistry and Physics; and 14 from Engineering. 

Postgraduate Research & Innovation Symposium (PRIS)

The College hosts the annual Postgraduate Research and Innovation Symposium (PRIS), to provide a challenging and competitive environment for postgraduate students to present their scholarly work, via posters and presentations, to an academic audience, while at the same time disseminating knowledge. The event is seen as a highlight of the academic calendar and draws more than 800 attendees.

STUDENT DISSERTATIONS

Research Space is an institutional repository of the University’s publications. It was developed to increase the visibility, availability and impact of its research output. Take a look at publications from our five schools.

Videos