• Director, Health through Physical Activity Lifestyle and Sport Research Centre (HPALS), Department of Human Biology, Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Cape Town


  • PhD (Physiology), University of Cape Town (1993)

Thesis title: Factors affecting energy expenditure and efficiency of fuel utilization: feeding and exercise models

  • MS (Exercise Physiology), University of South Carolina, USA (1983)

  • BA (Phys Ed), Furman University, USA (1980)


  • Physical Activity, Nutrition and Obesity (PANO)


  • Physical activity and obesity in health and disease in communities in transition and the Global South
  • Childhood physical activity and obesity
  • Behaviour change and community-based interventions
  • Obesity, food insecurity and physical activity: solving wicked problems
  • Regulation of energy metabolism and metabolic sequelae in leanness and obesity and finally


  • B2-rated research scientist, National Research Foundation, South Africa
  • Consultant to the United States Centers for Disease Control and World Health Organization (WHO) on issues related to the Role of Diet and Activity in the Prevention of Non-Communicable Diseases, and Developing a Global Policy for Promoting Physical Activity for Health, wih particular emphasis on the Global South (various technical meetings, 1993-2016)
  • Chair of the African Physical Activity Network (AFPAN) from its inception in 2007 until 2013.
  • Chair of Agita Mundo, Global Network for Social Mobilisation for Physical Activity and Health, and council of the International Society for Physical Activity and Health (ISPAH)
  • Member of the Executive Council of the International Society for Physical Activity and Health.
  • Member of the Scientific Advisory Council for the International Obesity Task Force (2009-2014)
  • South African principle Investigator for Modeling the Epidemiological Transition study (METS) (2009-present)
  • Co-principal investigator for WDF- funded, school-based intervention, Health Kick (2009-2014)
  • South African principal investigator for the ISCOLE study (International Study on Childhood Obesity, Lifestyle and Environment).
  • Lead investigator for the STOP-SA Study (Slow, Stop or Stem the Tide of Obesity in the People of South Africa).
  • Lead the initiative for Healthy Active Kids South Africa 2007, 2010, and 2014, 2016 in conjunction with other tertiary academic institutions, NGO’s and private sector stakeholders.  
  • Member of the national obesity task team that recently drafted the South African National Strategy for the Prevention and Control of Obesity 2015-2020


Tel:  +27 21 650 4571