Doctor Phil Mjwara has served as the Director-General of Science and Technology (DST) since April 2006. In this capacity, he is responsible for all policy development in the science and technology sector in South Africa. His duties include driving the implementation of the National Research and Development Strategy and the DST’s Ten-Year Innovation Plan for South Africa. Prior to his appointment at DST, Dr Mjwara was the Group Executive: Research and Development and Strategic Human Capital at the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR), where he was responsible for assisting the CSIR in its efforts to strengthen its science base, including human capital development. In 2001, Dr Mjwara joined the National Laser Centre as its head.

He was instrumental in growing the centre’s activities from its inception, and in creating a network of centres in Africa (the African Laser Centre) until 2005. He has also held positions at the former Department of Arts, Culture, Science, and Technology (as Director of Technology Development), at the University of Pretoria (as Professor of Science and Technology Policy) and at the Universities of the Witwatersrand, South Africa and Fort Hare (as a physics lecturer). He has been involved in the management of technological innovation, as well as in processes for policy formulation. He led the team that conducted the first South African Technology Foresight project. He has published and presented numerous papers relating to physics, technology analysis, and foresight. Dr Mjwara has served on various advisory councils and review boards. He currently serves on the Council of the University of Johannesburg and is one of the co-chairs of the Group on Earth Observations based in Geneva.