Schalk Grobbelaar

Senior Lecturer, Department of Engineering and Technology Management, Faculty of Engineering, Built Environment & IT, University of Pretoria

PhD (Eng Man), Pr.Eng, M.Eng, B.Eng (Hon), B.Eng (Mechanical) & GCC Factories

I am currently a Senior Lecturer specialising in Technology and Innovation Management and Risk Management. I perform research in these fields and also data science. Some of my latest research projects utilised supervised machine learning (Artificial Intelligence) to classify academic papers using natural language processing. I utilised Microsoft Azure Machine Learning Studio.

During my time at York Timbers I was the Group Engineer and my responsibilities focused on project development and execution. We successfully managed several complex multi-disciplinary projects. For many of these projects we identified the opportunity, evaluated technologies, performed the feasibility, obtained acceptance from the stakeholders, performed the pre-engineering, presented the project to the senior management, directors and financiers for approval, performed the detail engineering, executed the project and closed the project. I have developed various operational and strategic decision-making models. Some of these models utilised ERP data to assist complex operational decision-making. I have also developed models that optimises long term decision-making in terms of plantation rotation, tree bucking and sawmill/plywood processing. These models include multiple datasets and enables one to optimise decision-making in a complex environment with multiple dependencies.

My PhD thesis defined the purpose of companies and considered strategies that companies may use to improve their competitiveness. I developed a methodology based on multiple correlation testing that can be used to evaluate the competitiveness of companies. I chose this topic because I am passionate about identifying opportunities where companies can positively influence the ecosystem and sustainably improve its competitiveness.

o        Member of Mensa

o        Member of ICMEESA

o        Academic Honorary Colours (Management of Technology (Coursework)) – University of Pretoria (2010)

o        Member of Golden Key International Honour Society

I started running long distance in 2014 and have subsequently completed multiple half marathons, marathons and ultra-marathons including the Mac Mac Ultra (100 miles), Salomon Skyrun (100km), Lesotho Ultra Trail (50km), Comrades ultra-marathon (Up and Down), Two Oceans ultra-marathon (56km), Longtom ultra-marathon (54km), Loskop ultra-marathon (50km), Mount Aux-Sources ultra-marathon (50km), Kosmos 3-in-1 (42.2, 21.1&10km), Uitsoek Skymarathon (38km) etc.