DST-NRF SARChI Chair in Water Quality and Wastewater Management, Tier 2
Primary discipline: Microbiology (September 2018 - August 2023)
Professor Maggy Momba holds a BA degree in Education, BSc Honours and MSc degrees in Biology, MSc and PhD degrees in Microbiology. Prof Momba conducts research activities on various aspects of water with emphasis on drinking water purification and wastewater management, health-related water microbiology and bioremediation. After 28 years of specializing in the field of water research, she is a National Research Foundation (NRF) C1 Rated Scientist.
Prof Momba has over 180 publications. Her research achievements have led to an international award for ‘Outstanding Community Support” in 2004, a South African Women in Water Award and a Vice-Chancellor’s Senior Researcher Medal in 2005, a Woman Researcher of the year in 2008 and 2011, Vice Chancellor Female Senior Researcher of the year in 2012 and Institutional Innovator of the year in 2012. These awards elevated her status as a force to reckon with, in terms of water research in South Africa and beyond. In 2014, Professor Momba became the Adviser of World Health Organisation for Household Drinking Water Treatment, Geneva. In 2016, she was recognised as one of ten 2016 Science Heroes by the Planet Earth Institute (PEI).
Prof Momba is a member of no fewer than 13 national and international scientific committees, among others, Water Research Commission (WRC) steering committees, the Water Institute of South Africa, the Editorial Board of Water SA, the International Water Association, the DNA Bar-coding of Life Committee and reviewer of about seven refereed journals.
The Research Chair in Water contributes to an integrated management approach of water and wastewater. Its research activities therefore centre on:
With just over 1000 cubic meter of fresh water available for each person per year for a population of above 55.4 million, South Africa is among severe water-scarce countries. The country is currently facing formidable challenges in meeting the rising demand of clean water as the available sources of freshwater are decreasing due to extensive industrialization, increasing population density and a high level of urbanization. There is a need for an integrated water resources perspective ensuring that social, economic, environmental and technical dimensions are taken into account in the management and development of water resources. The Chair in Water therefore focuses on a number of technologies to counteract pollution of water resources and to produce safe drinking water.