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DUT’S PROFESSOR KEOLEBOGILE MOTAUNG APPOINTED AS A MEMBER OF THE NATIONAL INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY MANA


The Minister of Higher Education, Science and Innovation, Dr Blade Nzimande recently appointed the Durban University of Technology (DUT) Acting Deputy Vice-Chancellor: Research, Innovation and Engagement, Professor Keolebogile Motaung, as a member of the National Intellectual Property Management Office (NIPMO) Advisory Board.


The appointment is effective from 01 January 2023 to 31 October 2025. According to the appointment letter from Minister Nzimande, the role of the Advisory Board is to advise the National Intellectual Property Management Office on the performance of its functions, the exercise of its powers and the execution of its duties. Prof Motaung is expected to fulfil this role. Her duties also include the identification, disclosure and statutory protection, management and commercialisation of intellectual property from publicly funded research and development.


The Minister congratulated Prof Motaung on her appointment and wished her well on the execution of her duties as a member of the NIPMO Advisory Board. He expressed that he was confident that Prof Motaung’s experience and expertise will contribute significantly in promoting the objectives of the NIPMO Act.


Speaking about her appointment, Prof Motaung confirmed that she had accepted it and she was honoured that Dr Nzimande had recognised her experience and expertise. Her focus will be on the commercialization of research and the licensing of Intellectual Property (IP), which is something she is passionate about.


“I was very excited when I heard that I have been appointed to serve as a member of the NIPMO Advisory Board. This will also benefit DUT, as our entrepreneurs will benefit a lot. I will be able to spot any patent ready to license a new technology, bringing the business to them so that they are ready to license a new technology. I will be looking out for the DUT entrepreneurs under the innobiz DUT Centre for Entrepreneurship and Innovation. I plan to share how I was able to move my Intellectual Property (IP) to the market with the board, entrepreneurs and research centres so they can register their IP with NIPMO,” said Prof Motaung.


In addition, her appointment talks to DUT’s ENVISION2030 strategic objectives that highlights that DUT people will be creative, innovative, entrepreneurial and adaptive to the changes of the world. The licensing of technology IP can also contribute to these objectives. She plans to gain as much knowledge during her tenure that she will share with the DUT students in order to learn the significance of the IP rights, including patent, copyright, trademarks and design in their businesses.


Prof Motaung joined the DUT family in November 2021 to fill the position of the Director: Technology, Transfer and Innovation (TTI). She was appointed last year as the Acting Deputy Vice-Chancellor: Research, Innovation and Engagement. She is also in charge of the innobiz DUT Centre for Entrepreneurship and Innovation which has helped many DUT students to turn their ideas into business and become job creators instead of job seekers. She is passionate about the commercialization of scientific research for economic and social benefits.


She is an award-winning Biomedical Scientist who has received a number of accolades due to her continuous efforts in bridging the gap between science and entrepreneurship. She holds a D.Tech Biomedical Technology from Tshwane University of Technology in conjunction with the University of California, USA and obtained her M.Tech in Biomedical Technology at the Tshwane University of Technology. She obtained her B.Tech in Biomedical Technology at Technikon Witwatersrand while she graduated with her National Diploma in Medical Technology at Technikon Pretoria in 1992.


Prior to joining DUT, Prof Motaung held the position of the Assistant Dean: Research, Innovation and Engagement in the Faculty of Science at the Tshwane University of Technology for six years.


Pictured: DUT Acting Deputy Vice-Chancellor: Research, Innovation and Engagement, Professor Keolebogile Motaung.

Simangele Zuma

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