Keynote Speaker

Dr Jan-Hendrik (Hennie) Groenewald
Executive Manager Biosafety South Africa

Hennie Groenewald studied human biochemistry and molecular biology before he obtained a PhD in plant molecular physiology and biotechnology. He has worked in the public, private and academic sectors and has more than 25 years of experience in research and development, teaching, biosafety risk analysis and governance, science communication, innovation management and business development.

He is currently the executive manager of Biosafety South Africa, a national biosafety service platform, within the Technology Innovation Agency and under the auspices of the national Department of Science and Technology. It is the principal instrument within the national biotech innovation system which enables compliant, sustainable and effective research & development, innovation and commercialisation in the biotech sector.

Hennie has served on numerous international and national bodies tasked with responsible research and innovation, biosafety and risk governance and sustainable biotech & agricultural innovation. The significance of Hennie's contribution to biotech innovation in South Africa is acknowledged by the inclusion of his professional profile in the 2015 book "Blazing a biotechnology trail: Celebrating biotechnology excellence in South Africa", which celebrates the history of biotechnology in the country.