This is a brief introduction to the academic and support staff you will meet during your academic journey from the Department of Development Studies.

Professor Stephen Mago 

Professor and Head of Department

Stephen Mago is an Associate Professor at Nelson Mandela University in the Department of Development Studies. He is an interdisciplinary researcher who holds a BSc Honours degree in Economics, a Masters in Business Administration (MBA), and a PhD in Development Studies. Stephen’s research interests are in development finance, entrepreneurship (including rural entrepreneurship), local economic development, development theory, research ethics, and social science research methods. He supervises postgraduate students up to the doctoral level. Stephen has linkages with various universities (national and international) as an external examiner or moderator.





Prof Janet Cherry


Janet Cherry is a researcher and activist in the field of sustainable and participatory development. She has an interdisciplinary background in economic history and political sociology, with her qualifications being a PhD in political sociology from Rhodes University and Honours and Masters in Economic History from the University of Cape Town. She has done research in the fields of social and political history, civil society and social movements, political participation, human rights, land, gender and sustainable development. She has worked as a researcher for the HSRC Democracy and Governance programme and the SA Truth and Reconciliation Commission, among others, and as a researcher and trainer in many African countries. She is currently involved in action research on township economies and sustainable development in the Nelson Mandela Bay municipality, namely the Sustainable Settlement Pilot Project and the Transition Township Project. Her Masters and Doctoral students are working in the fields of food sovereignty, conservation agriculture, land and sustainable livelihoods in Sub-Saharan Africa. 



Dr Amanda van den Berg

Senior Lecturer and Academic Coordinator

Dr Amanda van den Berg obtained her PhD in Business Management from the Nelson Mandela University in 2016.  She received her BA, BA Honours and MA degrees from the University of Port Elizabeth in South Africa. She is currently employed and teaches within the Department of Development Studies at Nelson Mandela University.  She is involved in the teaching, supervision, research and academic delivery, including the co-ordination of the Masters and Doctoral programmes within the Department. She also offers her services to a number of South African universities as an external examiner/moderator. 






Dr Florah Sewela Modiba

Lecturer and Academic Coordinator

Florah has recently joined Nelson Mandela University where she educates, supervises and does research. Her doctoral degree (DLITT ET PHIL) in Development Studies was awarded by UNISA in 2016. Her topic investigated the role of ICTs in rural development. She has been with UNISA since the start of her higher education where she studied Languages and Literature, specialising in creative writing; progressed to an honours degree in Gender Studies; then an MA focusing on female entrepreneurship and ICTs. Prior to joining NMU, she spent eight years in the corporate industry and academia working for companies such as SAP Research and UNISA. She has worked in research and development projects in the areas of health, education, Small Medium Micro Enterprises (SMMEs), and innovative mobile applications for small and large enterprises. She is passionate about improving the socio-economic conditions of South Africa using research to explore innovative ways of addressing social challenges. Her research and innovation interests are in education; SMMEs; ICT in development; development issues and opportunities; gender issues; and sustainable community and rural development. 



Mr Sakhile Phiri

Lecturer and Academic Coordinator

Sakhile M. Phiri graduated with Hons in Economics and Business studies, from University of Newcastle Upon Tyne, in 2006. The subject of his dissertation was macroeconomic policy. He previously worked as an enterprise account manager for Newcastle city council. Mr Phiri graduated from Nelson Mandela University in 2009 after completing his Master research in policing and conflict. He joined the Department of Development Studies as programme co-ordinater and associate lecturer. His current research focuses on enhancing employability, entrepreneurship and youth development within the local labour market. Mr Phiri is also the Programme Coordinator for the BA Development Studies programme.




Dr Danai Tembo

Lecturer and Academic Coordinator

Danai Tembo completed her BSc Environmental Sciences Degree in 2008, majoring in Geosciences and Zoology.  She completed her Masters in Development Studies in 2010 and her researched looked at the disparities prevalent in the policing of consumptive and non-consumptive marine activities.  She has worked in the Department of Development Studies at Nelson Mandela University since July 2009, first as a student assistant and later as a Programme Coordinator for the Maritime Studies and MA Development Studies programmes. Danai is currently working on her doctoral degree which will look at developing strategies for the improved implementation of the legislation related to the marine environment in South Africa, while working as an associate lecturer for the department and a programme coordinator for the MPhil Development Finance programme.



Ms Chwayita Kani

Postgraduate - Associate Lecturer

Chwayita Kani completed her BA Development studies degree at Nelson Mandela University in 2014, she went on to complete her BA (Honours) Development Studies degree at NMU in 2015. She has been working in the department since 2012, first as a student assistant and then as a lecturing assistant. She is currently assisting with the coordination of the BA Development Studies undergraduate programme. Chwayita is currently working on her Masters by research in Development Studies degree which will look at the potential effects of Shale Gas Development on the agricultural livelihoods of commercial livestock farmers in the Chris Hani District.





Mr Muzi Shoba

Associate Lecturer

Muzi Shoba is an Associate Lecturer in the Department of Development Studies at the Nelson Mandela University. He is involved in teaching at the undergraduate level and assists with the coordination of the Master's programme. He also supervises postgraduate students at the Honours and Masters level. He is currently completing his doctoral studies at the University of KwaZulu Natal (UKZN). He previously worked as a tutor and teaching assistant at UKZN before joining Nelson Mandela University.



Programme Administrator

Ms Joshna Daya

Tel: +27 (0)41 504 2504

Fax: +27 (0)41 504 2826





Research Associates:

Prof Jonathan Makuwira

Prof Frederik Claeyè

Dr Susan Ziehl


Associated Lecturing Staff and Guest Lecturers


BA in Development Studies

Dr Laura Amoah

Dr Pat Gibs

Dr Gabriel Musasa


PG Dip in Maritime Studies

Ms Rize Van Rooyen

Ms Asisipo Mhlonyane

Mr Rory Haschick

Dr Daniel Lemley

Dr Lynn Jonas

Ms Dudzai Kuture


BA Honours in Development Studies

Mr Albert Kagande

Ms Chwayita Kani


MPhil in Development Finance

Dr Clement Moyo

Mr Michael Coenraad de Lange

Mr Idriss Mouchili

Mr Msingathi Sipuka


MPhil in Maritime Studies

Ms Roshin Petersen

Prof Bernadette Snow

Mr Jonas Aryee

Mr Toyer Jappie

Dr Lynn Jonas

Prof Progress Hove-Sibanda