Dr Calie Pistorius is the Director of DeltaHedron Ltd


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Calie Pistorius has extensive consulting experience in the management of technology, technological innovation and the dynamics of technological change. He has published widely and delivered many keynote addresses across the globe, and has received a number of research awards.

He is also an extraordinary professor in Engineering Management in the Department of Industrial Engineering at the University of Stellenbosch in South Africa, where he has been instrumental in establishing the new online structured Master's Degree in Engineering Management.

Previously he was the Vice-Chancellor of the University of Hull in the UK (Sep 2009-Jan 2017), the Vice-Chancellor and Principal of the University of Pretoria (UP) (Aug 2001- Aug 2009) in South Africa; and the Dean of the Faculty of Engineering, the Built Environment and Information Technology, Director of the Institute for Technological Innovation (ITI) and the Director of Information Technology at UP. He is also a former chair of the National Advisory Council on Innovation (NACI) in South Africa.

Dr Calie Pistorius obtained B.Sc(Eng) and B.Eng(Hons) degrees in electronics engineering from the University of Pretoria in 1979 and 1981 (both cum laude), MS and PhD degrees in electrical engineering from the Ohio State University in 1984 and 1986, and the SM degree in the management of technology from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1994. He is an alumnus of Harvard Business School, having completed the AMP in 2003. In July 2018 he was awarded the CQRM (Certified in Quantitative Risk Management).

He is registered as a Chartered Engineer in the UK, and is a Fellow of the Institution of Engineering and Technology, Fellow of the Royal Society of South Africa, Fellow of the South African Academy of Engineering, Fellow of the South African Institute of Electrical Engineers, Fellow of the Institute of Directors, Senior Member of the Institute for Electrical and Electronics Engineers and member of the Academy of Science of South Africa.


He has consulted on the management of technological innovation for clients in a wide range of industries, including the telecommunications, information technology, health, steel, energy, mining, electronics, aerospace, food and beverage, paper and pulp, chemical and consulting sectors, as well as universities and higher education institutions, science councils, government departments and municipalities. Inputs were also provided to the Georgia Institute of Technology on international technology indicators and the George Washington University Forecast on Emerging Technologies.

As Director of the Institute for Technological Innovation, he consulted through the Laboratory for Advanced Engineering (Pty) Ltd , a campus company of the University of Pretoria. He was instrumental in the establishment and governance of a number of entrepreneurial campus enterprises at UP, focusing on consulting, executive and continuing education, commercialisation of research, sport and a venture fund, as well as being involved in the establishment and governance of business incubators and a science/techno park.

The executive education workshop ‘Managing Technological Innovation for Competitive Advantage’ was commissioned by several large companies and public bodies on an in-house basis and also attracted sizeable general audiences in South Africa and Australia.

Dr Pistorius now consults on the management of technological innovation through DeltaHedron Ltd, a UK-based business consultancy firm with a global reach.

Institute for Technological Innovation and research

Following a term as Professor and Head of the Department of Electrical and Electronics Engineering at UP, he established the Institute for Technological Innovation (ITI) in the Faculty of Engineering in 1998 and was as appointed as the Founding Director. His academic research in the management of innovation was conducted in the ITI at UP as well as the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). The ITI focuses on various aspects of the management of innovation, including technology foresight, innovation management on the organisational level, diffusion of innovations as well as competitiveness and national innovation strategy and systems. Collaborative industry consortia were established and a number of industry-focused consultancy projects and contract research focusing on the management of technological innovation were undertaken.

He is currently appointed as an Extraordinary Professor in Industrial Engineering at the University of Stellenbosch in South Africa.

Management and governance experience

Dr Calie Pistorius is an experienced Chief Executive with more than 27 years of international management experience. He has successfully led two research universities (in the UK and South Africa) as chief executive and vice-chancellor over a period of more than fifteen years, in highly competitive and rapidly changing national and international external environments. Currently he is the Chief Executive and Principal Consultant of a business consultancy company he established in the UK.

  •  Leadership and management experience, and oversight of all the strategic, operational and business functions of large, complex, multi-stakeholder organisations, with an international reach, as well as the Chief Executive of an entrepreneurial start-up company.
  •  Significant experience of change leadership and management, including renewal and transformation of organisational structures, organisational culture, social and cultural diversity, widening access, promotion of multilingualism and equality, business and operating model innovation, internationalisation, strategic positioning and differentiation of organisations.
  •  Experienced in building, leading and motivating teams, including core executive teams as well as larger leadership and management groups.
  •  Extensive experience of stakeholder engagement across the world on all levels, including engagement with chief executives of companies; heads of state, minsters, government officials and diplomats; leaders of universities, research institutes and NGOs; as well as funding agencies, donors and foundations.

He has substantial board-level governance experience. He is a Director of DeltaHedron Ltd, director of an educational trust and has served as a non-executive director of a number of companies in the UK and South Africa (involved with consulting, education, research and development, tourism, IT services and regional economic development), as the vice-chancellor of two universities and the Chair of NACI; as well as a member of advisory boards of science councils and bodies focusing on international scientific cooperation, the promotion of business and university-business interaction.

Digital transformation and Information Technology

As Vice-Chancellor, Director of IT at UP and Director of the Institute for Technological Innovation he has championed the IT modernisation of two universities, underpinned by his experience as an electronics engineer and knowledge of the UK’s academic IT infrastructure (as deputy chair of the board of JISC, the company that serves the IT needs of the HE/FE sectors in the UK). This included digital transformation and the development of IT strategy, establishment and roll-out of fixed and wireless networks, development and replacement of enterprise systems, data analytics, business intelligence and information systems, server networks and high performance computing environments, desktop management, computer laboratories, implementation and support of educational technologies, virtual learning environments and cyber campuses, mobile applications, disaster recovery and data and information security, as well as the organisational design of the IT Department and IT governance.

Science, technology and innovation advice to government and regional economic development

A new Ministry for Science and Technology was established in South Africa in 1994, supported by the National Advisory Council on Innovation. NACI is statutory body that advises the Minister of Science and Technology (and through the Minister the Cabinet) on national science, technology and innovation policy and related matters. Dr Pistorius was invited to be a member of NACI, and was subsequently appointed by the Minister as the Chair of NACI. In this capacity he was directly involved in steering the Council and the development of evidence-based national science, technology and innovation policy advice, and in presenting this to the Minister. He was also involved in rendering policy advice to the Department of Arts, Culture, Science and Technology on aspects relating to the National Research and Technology Audit and the National Research and Technology Foresight, the Department of Trade and Industry and the National Research Foundation.
Dr Pistorius has been a member of various bodies focusing on local and regional economic regeneration and innovation strategies in the UK, including the Humber Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP), Hull Forward, Hull City Leadership Board and the Greenport Hull Guiding Coalition. He was also a member of the steering committee of the World Conference of the International Association of Science Parks, Confederation of British Industries (CBI) Regional Council for Yorkshire & the Humber and the Leadership Council of the National Centre for Universities and Business (NCUB) in the UK.

Global network

DeltaHedron is a UK-based business consulting firm with a global reach, drawing on the experience of a world-wide network of associates in the fields of the management of technology and innovation, risk assessment, engineering, computer science, intellectual property and organisational development.