Motheo Koitsiwe - Biography



Dr Motheo Koitsiwe is a proud South African without borders, the first African indigenous scholar to have completed successfully the IKS PhD thesis in African indigenous astronomy (bolepa - dinaledi) of Batswana in Botswana and South Africa. The thesis was awarded by the North West University at the Great Hall during the 2019 graduation ceremony.

Dr Koitsiwe was appointed as the Director of Indigenous Knowledge Systems Centre (IKS Center), Faculty of Natural and Agricultural Sciences (FNAS), North - West University (NWU) from 01 July 2021 to 30 June 2026. He was appointed as the Acting Director of IKS Center from 01 January - 31 March 2020, 01 August - 31 December 2020 and from 01 January - 31 June 2021.

Dr Koitsiwe is a qualified indigenous knowledge systems lecturer, researcher and supervisor of IKS postgraduate students (M & D). He is a registered Post-Doctoral Fellow at the DSI - NRF South African Research Chair in Ocean Cultures and Heritage, Faculty of Humanities, University of Nelson Mandela, Port Elizabeth. His Postdoc fellowship host is Professor Rose Boswell (PhD Anthropology) at Nelson Mandela University.

Dr Koitsiwe was the first coordinator of the Bachelor of Indigenous Knowledge Systems which is a four (04) years professional degree registered with the South African Qualification Authority (SAQA) and approved by the Council for Higher Education (CHE). He has done and continue to conduct indigenous research with indigenous astronomy experts, African indigenous health practitioners, traditional leaders, researchers, scientists and various government departments as one of the 


strategies to promote African Indigenous Knowledge Systems (AIKS). Dr Koitsiwe has worked in collaboration with the Department of Science and Innovation in projects such as Recognition of Prior Learning, Indigenous Knowledge Systems EXPOs, Indigenous Knowledge Act Public Awareness Campaign and Biocultural Community Protocols. Dr Koitsiwe has published in accredited journals, attended national and international conferences. His current focus is on developing African Indigenous Languages, Heritage, Arts, Culture, Indigenous Astronomy, to establish the International Indigenous Astronomy Experts Society, a cadre of IKS Ambassadors, institutionalization of IKS and development of the Consortium on IKS at North-West University. He is also working with the like-minded to develop Short Learning Course in African indigenous entrepreneurship, arts, culture, heritage, museum, library and archives. He is also currently working with the Department of Higher Education and Training, Science and Innovation and the Service SETA to identify the career opportunities for IKS graduate coming from North - West University and University of Venda.

Dr Koitsiwe is also planning to collaborate with NRF - SAASTA Science Communication Division, with a purpose of organising and offering a science communication workshop to post-grads and post-docs conducting research around Indigenous Knowledge Systems (IKS) to equip them with skills to communicate their research effectively. The workshop aims to build science communication capacity in specific scientific fields or priority research areas, IKS being one of them, which will ensure the communication of research and technological developments in these fields.

Dr Koitsiwe is also planning to organise the International Indigenous Astronomy Conference with a purpose of launching the First International Indigenous Astronomy Experts Society. Dr Koitsiwe argues that being in the domain of IKS for him is more than a mere career pathway but a spiritual including intellectual calling towards the journey of transformation and decolonization of the education system.