Professor Brian Armstrong has been selected to head up the University of the Witwatersrand (Wits) Business School’s (WBS’s) Chair in Digital Business.
The former Telkom chief commercial officer, who described himself as "a business scientist and a scientific businessperson", envisages a fully sustainable Chair that becomes a centre of excellence in digital business in South Africa and Africa, impacting society.
“Our outputs must be seen and felt in our society; the Chair must have an impact on the South African and African business communities,” Armstrong said in a statement.
The Telkom and WBS partnership, established last year to advance research in the field of digital business, aims to place WBS at the forefront of developing important research and establish teaching programmes that are essential for doing business in a digital world.
The flagship programme of the Chair will be a master's in Digital Business, with other offerings, such as a postgraduate diploma and online and executive education courses in the offing.
“There have been significant changes in digital business and this role affords me the opportunity to explore the industry through research while bringing to the table my practical, business experience,” he added, noting the “hype” around digitalisation, a concept that was “over-traded but under-researched”.
“New and rigorously conducted research will underpin curriculum development, and there will be exciting opportunities for people to participate and share in this research,” he said.
Telkom is providing R32.7-million in funding for the Chair over five years.