Welcome to Stellenbosch University

​Researc​h fello​​ws​


Prof Math Noortmann (Coventry University)
(Maritime Security)

​ Prof​ile​

Math Noortmann joined the Centre for Trust, Peace and Social Relations (CTPSR) of Coventry University (CU) in November 2014 as their professor in Transnational Law and Non-State Actors.At CTPSR, he leads the Research Group on Transnational and Maritime Security. 

Prof Christian Bueger (Copenhagen University)
(Maritime Security)

​ Profile​

Christian Bueger is Professor of International Relations at the Department of Political Science, University of Copenhagen. He is also an honorary professor of the University of Seychelles and one of the directors of the SafeSeas network.

Dr. Hussein Solomon (University of the Free State)
(Landward Security: Terrorism)

​ Google Scholar Profile
​ Prof​​ile

Professor Hussein Solomon is a SIGLA Research Fellow, Academic Head of Department of Political Studies and Governance at the University of the Free State, Extraordinary Professor at the School of Government, North-West University, Senior Research Associate at the Jerusalem-based Research on Islam and Muslims in Africa (RIMA), 

Dr. Bahar Baser (Durham University)
(Landward Security & DIasporas)

​ Profile

Dr. Bahar Baser is a senior associate research fellow at the Security Institute for Governance and Leadership in Africa (SIGLA), Stellenbosch University, South Africa and visiting professor at Tampere Peace Research Institute, Tampere University, Finland.

Eve De Coning (Specialist Director, Norwegian ​ Ministry of Trade Industry and Fisheries)
(LLB LLM Shipping Law and LoS)

​ Profi​le

Eve de Coning (LLB, LLM (​shipping law and law of the sea)) is a specialist director with the Norwegian Ministry of Trade, Industry and Fisheries and a trained crime intelligence analyst. 

Prof Curtis Bell (Stable Seas Programme)
(Maritime Security)

​ Pr​ofile​​

Curtis Bell is an associate professor of Maritime Security and Governance in the International Programs Department at the U.S. Naval War College. 

Professor S. Bachmann (University of Canberra)
(Cyber Security & Hybrid Warfare)

​ Pr​ofi​le​​

Prof Bachmann is an international scholar, former Lieutenant Colonel (GER A Res)- with operational experience in the Balkans and as exchange officer with the US Marines and a career professional in law and higher education. In the last 20 years he worked in various capacities and functions in the USA, the Middle East, South Africa and various European countries. (Recent podcast on the War in Ukraine here)

Dr W.K. Janse van Rensburg (Content Advisor South African Parliament)​
(Civil-Military Relations)​

​ Pr​ofi​le​​

​Dr Janse van Rensburg currently serves as the defence researcher for the Parliament of South Africa's Joint Standing Committee on Defence. Previously he worked as a security analyst focusing on country-specific political and security risk in Africa. He also served in various positions as an officer in the South African National Defence Forc​e (SANDF) between 2002 and 2010​.

Captain (SA Navy) (ret) Mark Stephen Blaine
(Maritime Security)​


Captai​n Mark Blaine is a retired navy captain and currently a guest lecturer for nautical science at the Faculty of Military Science​ of the University of Stellenbosch. He completed his Master's Degree in Maritime Security through the University of Coventry in 2016 and serves as a Research Fellow in Sigla. His research focus is on African maritime security matters with undersea cable networks, infrastructure and cybersecurity as his particular areas of interest. Capt Blaine also consults for UNODC on maritime security and capacity building, as well as their training programmes.

Dr Brett van Niekerk.jpg​​

​Associate Professor Brett v​an Niekerk (Durban University of Technology)
Cyber security (Maritime)

​Brett van Niekerk (PhD) is an Associate Professor in IT at the Durban University of Technology. He is NRF-rated and serves as chair for the International Federation of Information Processing (IFIP) Working Group 9.10 on ICT Uses in Peace and War, the co-Editor-in-Chief of the International Journal of Cyber Warfare and Terrorism, associate editor for the International Journal of Information Security and Privacy, and on the international advisory board for the Journal of Information Warfare. He has participated in working groups for the Paris Call on Trust and Security in Cyberspace, the European Cyber Agora, the international research advisory group for the Global Commission on the Stability of Cyberspace, and has contributed to the ISO/IEC information security standards. In 2012 he graduated with his PhD focusing on information operations, information security and critical infrastructure protection. He is a Certified Information Security Manager, and an early adopter of the new South African Information Security Management Professional designation.


Dr G.K. vanDyk
Dean, Maritime Studies (Regional Maritime University)
Accra Ghana

Dr vanDyck is a Senior Lecturer at the Department of Transport and currently serves as the Dean of Maritime Studies of the Regional Maritime University in Accra, Ghana. He has worked in various capacities in academia, industry and through consultancy throughout his career. He is a member of the Transport Planning Group of the Ministry of Transport, Ghana, that developed key portions of the Ghana National Transport Policy 2020. He is also an active member of the Transport Sector Working Group comprising all transport related ministries, agencies and departments, including donor partners involved in transport related projects in Ghana. He is an executive member of the logistics and transport sector skills body for the commission for technical and vocational education and training (CTVET) in Ghana. His personal and research interests are in Maritime and ocean governance, the blue economy, port development, maritime security, and transformational and transitional logistics. 

Research Fellow​

Karen Allen (Karen Allen International)


Karen has a Masters' degree in International Relations and Contemporary War from King's College London where she is a Visiting Fellow in the War Studies Department.  She has a broad interest in geopolitics, human security and emerging technology and has undertaken research on influence operations/disinformation online and its impact on democracy in Africa. Her next project will focus on the use and extent of AI generated media by influence actors. Karen has also completed research on digital diplomacy and cybercrime in Africa.

She has an interest in the use of UAS/drone technology by violent non-state actors – an evolving area of study which increasingly is gaining international attention. Karen is an independent consultant working for a number of organisations including the Institute for Security Studies. Much of her work has been informed by her  previous career. Karen spent more than 25+ years as a foreign news correspondent for the BBC and was based across Africa and the Middle East.​

Mr Eeben Barlow
Chairman and CEO, Executive Outcomes

Mr Eeben Barlow is the founder and chairman of Executive Outcomes, arguably the most successful  Private Military Company in modern times. Upon leaving Executive Outcomes in late 1996, he served as a political and defence/security advisor to numerous African governments. He chaired STTEP International Ltd from 2009 to mid-2020.  Mr Barlow has partaken in numerous conflicts and wars across the continent where he has been described by many as one of Africa's true warrior-sons: a soldier, a scholar and a diplomat, yet unafraid to speak truth to power. He has served as a major general in several African armed forces and as a political and military advisor, military campaign strategist, and commander of several newly created, highly successful combat units. He has also overseen the training of specialist combat forces and accompanied them in battle. He served as the Honorary Consul of São Tomé and Príncipe to South Africa from 2019 to 2022. 

He has contributed to numerous published academic papers and book chapters and is a regular speaker at foreign conferences and seminars. Additionally, he frequently lectures at military colleges and universities across Africa and abroad and remains a trusted advisor to several African governments and military and political leaders. He is the author of four highly acclaimed books: Executive Outcomes: Against All Odds; Composite Warfare: The Conduct of Successful Ground Force Operations in Africa; The War for Africa: Conflict, Crime, Corruption and Foreign Interests and Human Intelligence: Supporting Composite Warfare Operations in Africa.  He is currently the chairman and CEO of  Executive Outcomes. The company was reactivated in 2020 on request of several African governments.