GEORGE ELLIS, Emeritus Distinguished Professor of Complex Systems in the Department of Mathematics and Applied Mathematics at the University of Cape Town. Professor Ellis co-authored The Large Scale Structure of Space-Time with University of Cambridge physicist Stephen Hawking (in 1973), and is considered one of the world’s leading theorists in cosmology.
HIS SUBJECT: “Science, Technology and Humanity.”
TIM NOAKES, Professor in the Discovery Health Chair of Exercise and Sports Science at the University of Cape Town. He is also director of the UCT/MRC Research Unit for Exercise Science and Sports Medicine, and co-founder (with rugby legend Morné du Plessis) of the Sports Science Institute of South Africa.
HIS SUBJECT: “Your Body, Your Future: Getting the Science Wrong.”
ALAN KNOTT-CRAIG jnr is founder of World of Avatar and CEO of Mxit, Africa’s largest social network. Between 2003 and 2006, he co-founded five companies in the mobile services sector. He’s a former MD of broadband network operator iBurst and author of the best-seller Don’t Panic, a book aimed at persuading emigrant South Africans to return home.
HIS SUBJECT: “In Pursuit of a Better-Connected Planet.”
JAMES MUNN is vice-president of business development in sub-Saharan Africa for wireless giant Qualcomm. Based in Johannesburg, he manages Qualcomm’s strategic relationships with OEMs and the company’s regional customers, including network operators and carriers, mobile handset vendors and software developers.
HIS SUBJECT: “How Wireless Rules the World.”
ANNAMART NIEMAN Prior to joining the Bar, Nieman was a partner at Deloitte & Touche, where she headed a multi-disciplinary team that included cyberforensic experts, forensic auditors, computer engineers, forensic investigators, information security specialists and data analysts.
Dr Nieman (she has a doctorate in electronic evidence) has frequently presented at national and international conferences, and has also been a guest lecturer at the FBI Academy in Washington and the universities of Pretoria, Cape Town, Johannesburg and North-West.
As prosecutor, senior state advocate and legal advisor, she was involved in high-level management of all National Prosecuting Authority investigations, focusing on racketeering, money laundering and asset forfeiture. She specialised in organised crime and specifically in serious financial crimes.
HER SUBJECT: “Policing Cyberspace: Should We Be Afraid?”
CAVAN HILL, a chemical engineer and general manager at Sasol New Energy, is responsible for the company’s venture and technology development, focusing on alternative energy technologies and the establishment of projects based on these technologies. He is currently involved in several renewable energy and electricity projects, and led the team responsible for the recent acquisition of a strategic stake by Sasol in a next-generation battery technology company.
HIS SUBJECT: “Sustainable energy and the opportunities for future mobility.”
PITCH IT TO THE PANEL. Reprising a popular segment from last year’s event, we’ll be inviting finalists from our annual PM Inventors Competition to present their inventions to our panel of experts (and to you, the audience) for comment and advice. You’ll be impressed and inspired by their home-grown ingenuity.