Prof Sue Harrison
DVC Research & Internationalisation, University of Cape Town
As Deputy Vice-Chancellor: Research and Internationalisation at the University of Cape Town (UCT), Prof Sue Harrison’s portfolio includes research, innovation, postgraduate studies and internationalisation with a strong focus on embedding social responsiveness into research. She contributes to the executive function in a cross-cutting way. She has a long, varied track record in management and leadership in the academic arena, built up through a 30 year academic career in the field of bioprocess engineering and its application to sustainable processes, the circular economy, green technologies and improved health care and well-being.
Sue’s research profile includes inter- and transdisciplinary research focused on sustainable development of mineral resources and post-mining regions as well as water sensitive systems. Her focus on resource efficiency drives her research in the circular economy and waste biorefinery fields. Her focus on the bioeconomy and bioprocess systems drives research in health biotechnology, including process development for vaccines and probiotics.
She was founding director of UCT’s interdisciplinary research institute Future Water and the Centre for Bioprocess Engineering Research, building strong teams of complementary researchers. Her strong commitment to the supervision of postgraduates, to mentoring emerging researchers, and to building research infrastructure contributes to research capacity.
Harrison’s expertise has been recognised through her B1 NRF rating, being elected a fellow of the WISA, the SAIMM and the South African Academy of Engineers. Most recently, she is one of six in Africa elected to the USA’s Academy of Engineers.