Standing from left to right: Mr Tom Dagada (chairperson of BMF Thohoyandou), Mr Mpho Motsei (Limpopo provincial chairperson of BMF), the executive mayor of the Vhembe District, Freda Nkondo, and Dr Khesani Xivuri, the first recipient of a PhD in applied data science, photographed soon after the gala dinner at Khoroni Hotel, on Friday, 3 May. Photo: Silas Nduvheni.

Business Forum honours Dr Khesani Xivuri


Education as a means for women to be successful is one of the cornerstones of the philosophy of the Thohoyandou branch of the Business Management Forum (BMF). This is also a motivation for the BMF’s decision to honour Dr Khensani Xivuri, the first recipient of a PhD in applied data science. Dr Xivuri holds a BCom in informatics, a BCom (honours) in informatics, and a master of information technology (MIT) from the University of Pretoria.

At a gala dinner held at Khoroni Hotel on Friday, 3 May, Professor Mmamoloko Rachidi, one of the guest speakers, emphasised that education enhances thinking ability and skills, urging women to empower themselves through education as a catalyst for success.

Dr Xivuri’s recent achievement includes completing a groundbreaking PhD in applied data science at the University of Johannesburg, making history as the first recipient of this degree. Her thesis developed a process model for fairness in artificial intelligence (AI) algorithms. Her research revealed a limited gender and social diversity in AI teams. Her research also offers practical guidelines for AI managers and developers to detect and mitigate bias before deployment.

With more than a decade of experience in technology audits, governance, risk, and assurance, Dr Xivuri has honed her expertise in prominent firms such as the Big Four audit firms and major telecommunications companies, including international experience in Ireland. Currently, she works in technology assurance at Vodacom.

“I want to mention upfront that I am not from an economics and business background. Importantly, this platform should assist us as government on strategies to rebuild our economy and put the province on an upward economic trajectory,” said Dr Xivuri.

Speaking during the gala dinner, the executive mayor of the Vhembe District Municipality, Freda Nkondo, said that education opens doors to opportunities previously out of reach. It equips women with the knowledge, skills, and confidence needed to navigate the complexities of the business world, she said.



Date:10 May 2024

By: Silas Nduvheni

Read: 1137







Recent Articles