Mrs Susan Veldsman
Dr Mohammed El-Hadidi
Ms Eiman Karar
Ms Suzanne Smit

Dr Mohamed El-Hadidi

Dr. Mohamed El-Hadidi is an Assistant Professor of Bioinformatics, Acting Director of the Biomedical Informatics Program, and Bioinformatics Professional Diploma Director at the School of Information Technology and Computer Science (ITCS) and the head of the bioinformatics research group at Center for Informatics Sciences (CIS), Nile University (NU) since January 2017. Currently, he is the associate director of the Biomedical Informatics BSc. program and the director of the Bioinformatics diploma at NU. Additionally, El-Hadidi has acquired good experience in the industry, which he gained from working as the head of the bioinformatics unit at Colors for Research private medical company.

El-Hadidi received his Ph.D. Degree in Bioinformatics in 2016 from the Department of Computer Science, Eberhard Karls Universität Tübingen in Germany. From 2012-2016 he has worked as a full-time researcher in ZBIT Center for Bioinformatics at University of Tubingen. El-Hadidi was awarded an EU-funded scholarship “Erasmus Mundus”, where he had the chance to finish two master’s degree; one in Computational and Systems Biology from Aalto University in Finland and the other in Biotechnology from the Technical University of Lisbon in Portugal.

El-Hadidi’s research expertise is in the area of applied bioinformatics with a focus on next-generation sequence data analysis and metagenomics. During his Ph.D., El-Hadidi’s main research focuses on designing and implementing automatic pipelines for the analysis of microbiome data for a wide range of applications in medicine and the environment. El-Hadidi has published several publications in prestigious peer-reviewed journals in the fields of bioinformatics and metagenomics.

Dr Suzanne Smit

Suzanne is passionate about work that solves real-world problems and offers new insights and perspectives on bringing about change that is environmentally sustainable and socially equitable. Suzanne is an executive board member of the Urban Modelling and Metabolism Assessment (uMAMA) research group based at Stellenbosch University and her qualifications include a Doctorate and Masters of Philosophy and Post Graduate Diploma in Sustainable Development, from Stellenbosch University; a Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration; and a National Diploma in Public Relations Management.

Suzanne’s Master’s work involved an exploratory study on connecting the green economy with the informal economy in South Africa. Her Ph.D. takes a broader perspective, and incorporates a systems approach to understanding the connections between urban informal settlements and the city. The study utilises a multi-scale integrated assessment of the societal and ecosystem metabolism approach for an urban informal settlement in Stellenbosch, South Africa in order to gauge human activity, land use and energy consumption in the settlement.

Her areas of interest include: Sustainable development, urban metabolism, green economy, informal economy, informal settlements, gendered aspects of growth and development, stakeholder engagement, sustainable and ‘just’ cities.

Mrs Susan Veldsman

Susan Veldsman was appointed to the position of Director: Scholarly Publication Unit at the Academy of Sciences in South Africa, in January 2009. She is responsible for raising the visibility, discoverability and accessibility of South African scholarly journals through Open Access and online journal content management; improve the quality of SA scholarly journal, books & conference proceedings through expert peer review panels in the field; find ways and solutions to further support the development of policy frameworks in order to facilitate optimal use and

access to publicly funded research. She received the Electronic Publishing Trust (EPT) award for her outstanding contribution to the promotion of Open Access in Developing Countries.  Early in her career she started off as an Information Librarian, at various Higher Education Libraries in South Africa where she eventually was promoted to Assistant Director: Client Services, Library

Services at the University of Johannesburg. During 2002 she moved to a national project, South African National Library and Information Consortium (SANLiC) where she was responsible for negotiating access to commercial databases and was actively involved in promoting Open Access and setting up Institutional Repositories. She continued this work, in 2006, in an international consortium,

Ms Eiman Karar

EimanKarar is currently working as Senior Advisor at the United Nations Environmental Programme. Between 2005-2016, Eiman was the Executive Manager for Management of Water Resources Department at the Water Research Commission (WRC) of South Africa. From 2001-2005 she was the Director in the Department of Water Affairs of South Africa responsible for developing policies pertaining to all decentralised Water Management Institutions and their related governance arrangements. She is a registered professional natural scientist with the South African Association of Natural Scientists and is a member of the Water Institute of South Africa.

Eiman has 20 years of experience in water resources management mostly in southern Africa but also very familiar with North Africa water management. Her expertise is in research and policy interface, decentralisation of management decisions from a governance perspective; legal, organisational, financial and technical aspects.