Senior Town Planning lecturer and South African Research Chairs Initiative (SARChI) Chair in Inclusive Cities Professor Hangwelani Magidimisha-Chipungu has been appointed to serve on the Scientific Committee of the International Society of City and Regional Planners (ISOCARP).
The committee advises on major technical planning issues with “professional and academic integrity and competence”. Members provide substantive opinion to shape ISOCARP’s proactive and progressive agenda, provide evidence-based analysis to enable society contributions to international debates, and ensure ISOCARP remains at the forefront of planning, thinking and practice.
Committee members serve for a three-year period.
Magidimisha-Chipungu believes that representation and inclusion are paramount as they permeate all aspects of what she does as the SARChI Chair for Inclusive Cities. ‘Being on this scientific committee demands that I provide my time, knowledge, and skills. It is definitely hard work, but when you realise that you are not just representing your institution or country but the entire African continent in the quest for sustainable urban growth, and future success of cities – something we are passionate about – it is more than rewarding. There is no better place to contribute than through this committee.’
She considers it ‘a vibrant experience working with different experts in their own fields from across the globe and to share our knowledge, skills, and experiences. Serving on the ISOCARP Scientific Committee is prestigious. I dedicate myself wholeheartedly to this opportunity and hope that during my tenure I will be able to contribute in the best way I can.’
Magidimisha-Chipungu is a National Planning Commissioner appointed by the President of South Africa and a National Research Foundation (NRF)-rated researcher.
She has also served as a city planning commissioner for eThekwini Municipality with the responsibility of strategically advising the executive committee and councillors and was also on the Advisory Committee of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs, where she advised the Office of the Premier in KwaZulu-Natal on spatial equity.
She was nominated for a Vice-Chancellor’s Research Award at UKZN, and named as one of the finalists of the Mail & Guardian’s 2022 Power of Women listing under the category of The Governing Woman.
At a global level, Magidimisha-Chipungu served ISOCARP in co-directing the first workshop for Young Professional Planners (YPP) in South Africa in 2016, and was recognised as the most influential woman by the United Kingdom’s The Planner magazine under the Royal Institute of Town Planners.
She was awarded ISOCARP BRONZE membership – a first for Africa – for her outstanding contribution during ISOCARP 57 and 58 in Doha.