Mon - Fri 08h00 - 16h30    

Dr Schalk Grobler

Module: Project Risk Management

Dr Schalk Grobler

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.

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.


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The PPM is recognized by the following:

  1. PMI (Project Management Institute) – USA and Globally
  2. ECSA (Engineering Council of SA)
  3. SACPCMP (South African Council for the Project and Construction Management Professions)
  4. SACNASP (South African Council for Natural Scientific Professionals)
  5. PMSA (Project Management South Africa)

On successful completion of the PPM, suitable candidates may be eligible to apply for the professional designation of Project Manager (PM) conferred by Project Management South Africa (PMSA). PMSA is the SAQA recognized professional body representing the interests of project managers across sectors.

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