Phumlani Nkontwana

Lecturer & Research Associate

Field of research

  • Systems entrepreneurship;
  • Innovation governance;
  • Entrepreneurship education;
  • Local economic & sustainable development


Phumlani has run and managed prominent entrepreneurship funds for blue-chip local and international companies such as Allan Gray, Multichoice, Transnet, Total, J.P. Morgan and Philips; impacting hundreds of entrepreneurs and emerging businesses since 2009. His recent work with the African Union and the Germany International Development Agency (GIZ) promotes Pan African entrepreneurship among young Africans from different parts of Africa at Pan African University Institute of Water and Energy Sciences (PAUWES) and Tlemcen University in Algeria.  With years of experience in enterprise and supplier development, Phumlani enjoys healthy relationships with local and international ecosystem stakeholders and organisations invested in growing and sustaining new enterprises.

CST Research Group:

Systems Entrepreneurship and Innovation Governance (SEIG)

This centre of excellence for entrepreneurship research and development views entrepreneurship beyond the confines of products and services but to also include systems and intentional communities. Our research work seeks to contribute to growth and preservation of new innovation governance systems that emerge from experimentations and result is visible positive spill-overs or societal impact.

CST Projects:

  • Establishment and coordination of the new flagship transdisciplinary and entrepreneurial diploma programme in sustainable development
  • Participation at the SEED South Africa Symposium 2017 to produce a Policy Prototyping White Paper aimed at promoting Innovative Enterprise Solutions for an Eco-Inclusive and Climate-Resilient Society in South Africa.
  • Participation at the Design Lab for the new systems entrepreneurship global fellowship programme for the Rockefeller Foundation, in partnership with the UCT Graduate School of Business.
  • Designing the new PAUWES Innovation and Entrepreneurship Centre concept in partnership with African Union, Germany Government through KFW Bank, GIZ and Tlemcen University in Algeria.
  • Establishment of an ongoing collaboration with the Bertha Centre for Social Innovation and Entrepreneurship through the Philippi project and in partnership with CST’s Transformative Transdiscilinary Research Group

Find his LinkedIn profile here