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Focus Areas

The CoE-MaSS was formed via a NRF competitive Open Call as a two-round application process in 2013 whereby “Research Themes” in areas of existing strength within South Africa were proposed by the Founding Nodes to form the core research areas of the Centre going forward. In 2017, these Research Themes were reengineered in line with active researchers interests and national priorities, and were subsequently renamed “Focus Areas”.

The Centre’s Focus Areas are given below, along with the names and contact details of:

  1. the lead Focus Area Coordinator (FAC) in charge of facilitating the high level strategic oversight of all activities that take place within the theme, and
  2. the Junior Focus Area Coordinator (JFAC) who assists the FAC with the Focus Area. The important of each Focus Area having an additional JFAC is to develop such skills in the emerging research acaedmics cohort around the country in all MaSS areas with a focus to build up a sustainable skillset in research project planning and implementation, and to create succession plans within each Focus Area.
1 Mathematics in Industry
Focus Area Coordinator (FAC)

David Mason (Wits)
david.mason@wits.ac.za 

Junior Focus Area Coordinator (JFAC)

Ashleigh Hutchinson (Wits)
ashleigh.hutchinson@wits.ac.za

2 Algebra and Topology
Focus Area Coordinator (FAC)

Bernardo Rodrigues (UKZN)
rodrigues@ukzn.ac.za

Junior Focus Area Coordinator (JFAC)

Sivuyile Mgobozi (UKZN)
mgobhozis@ukzn.ac.za

3 Statistical Theory and Applied Statistics
Focus Area Coordinator (FAC)

Andriette Bekker (UP)
andriette.bekker@up.ac.za

Junior Focus Area Coordinator (JFAC)

Jaco Visagie (UP)
jaco.visagie@up.ac.za

4 Operator Algebras and Functional Analysis
Focus Area Coordinator (FAC)

Louis Labuschagne (NWU)
louis.labuschagne@nwu.ac.za

Junior Focus Area Coordinator (JFAC)

Gerrit Goosen (NWU)
29845467@nwu.ac.za

5 Number Theory
Focus Area Coordinator (FAC)

Florian Luca (Wits)
florian.luca@wits.ac.za

Junior Focus Area Coordinator (JFAC)

Dimbinaina Ralaivaosaona (SU)
naina@sun.ac.za

6 Modelling and Analysis in Life Sciences
Focus Area Coordinator (FAC)

Michael Chapwanya (UP)
michael.chapwanya@up.ac.za

Junior Focus Area Coordinator (JFAC)

Salisu Garba (UP)
salisu.garba@up.ac.za

7 Mathematical Physics
Focus Area Coordinator (FAC)

Kevin Goldstein (Wits)
kevin.goldstein@wits.ac.za

Junior Focus Area Coordinator (JFAC)

Amare Abebe (NWU)
amare.abbebe@gmail.com

8 Mathematics Education Research
Focus Area Coordinator (FAC)

Delia North (UKZN)
northd@ukzn.ac.za

Junior Focus Area Coordinator (JFAC)

Farai Chirove (UKZN)
chirovef@ukzn.ac.za

9 Machine Intelligence and Learning from Experience (MILE)
Focus Area Coordinator (FAC)

Turgay Celik (Wits)
turgay.celik@wits.ac.za
 

Junior Focus Area Coordinator (JFAC)

Richard Klein (Wits)
richard.klein@wits.ac.za

10 Symmetries, mechanics and applications
Focus Area Coordinator (FAC)

Sunil Maharaj (UKZN) 
maharaj@ukzn.ac.za

Junior Focus Area Coordinator (JFAC)

Rivendra Narain (UKZN) 
narain@ukzn.ac.za

11 Numerical and Applied Mathematics
Focus Area Coordinator (FAC)

Andre Weideman (SU)
weideman@sun.ac.za

Junior Focus Area Coordinator (JFAC)

Nick Hale (SU)
nickhale@sun.ac.za

* JFACs are Emerging Researchers – usually either under 40 years of age OR within 5 years of PhD.

The Coordinators are responsible for liaising with all researchers within their Focus Area from all of the CoE-MaSS Nodes to solicit their ideas for the strategic research trajectory for the Focus Area, compile the Focus Area Business Plan proposal and annual budget for the approval of the CoE-MaSS Steer/Co, compile the annual Focus Area report, and facilitate the progressive research goals of their multi-institutional Focus Area within the Nodes.

Annual Standing Focus Area Deadlines

  • 31 January - FAC&JFAC to submit Annual Progress Report from the preceding calendar year
  • 15 September - FAC&JFAC to submit their Focus Area’s Annual Research Plan and Budget to CoE-MaSS for the following year, for consideration by the Steer/Co
  • 31 October - CoE-MaSS to confirm Steer/Co-approved budget with the FAC&JFAC for the following year
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