About the NSCF
The NSCF is a virtual Facility, comprised of a network of institutions that hold natural science collections that are accessible to external researchers.
The NSCF was established as part of the Department of Science and Innovation (DSI)’s Research Infrastructure Roadmap and co-ordinated by the South African National Biodiversity Institute (SANBI).
More information about the NSCF is provided in the brochure, overview and plan documents.
NSCF Overview and Plan
An overview of the structure, purpose, principles and 3 year plan is provided here
NSCF Overview and Plan
Prof. Michelle Hamer
012 843 5017
Ms Usisipho Sotshangane
012 843 5183
She has fallen in love with the frogs – which she was terrified of in the beginning when she joined the NSCF. She loves nature and the outdoors. If she could no longer be part of the network for whatever reason, she will live in water permanently.
Ms Margaret Bartkowiak
Museum Specimen Photographer
Before joining the NSCF, Margaret worked with various NGO’s, publishers and corporate companies in Gauteng, Cape Town and London. She also loves sushi, travelling, camping, hiking and is slightly obsessed with bird watching.
Ms Bronwynne Petersen
Data Quality Specialist
012 843 8194
In her spare time there is nothing that makes her happier than spending time with her husband and kids.
Adriaan is currently employed by the Natural Science Collections Facility (NSCF) as a herpetology curation technician. His main responsibilities in this position are the identification and databasing of reptile and amphibian specimens housed in the museum collections of the various NSCF partner institutions.
Ms Shanelle Ribeiro
012 843 5183
Shanelle has been involved in project coordination and management in the environmental sector for over 10 years, and has been part of the Foundational Biodiversity Science Directorate at SANBI for 12 years. She holds a degree in International Relations, as well as Prince2 and Agile Practitioner certifications in project management. As the NSCF Project Manager she is responsible for the development and implementation of various project policies and standards, management of partner collaboration agreements and service provider contracts, staff management and mentoring and budget management. Through the NSCF project she has discovered a new found love and curiosity for all things pressed and preserved, and is always looking to expand her knowledge about the old and peculiar specimens in the collections.
Ms Fulufhelo Tambani
Science Communication Officer
Fulufhelo is a rural Muvenda who believes in learning from everyone she comes across and enjoys engaging with people from all walks of life. Fulufhelo obtained her Bachelor of Science Degree in Biochemistry and Microbiology at the University of Venda and then completed two short courses: Science Communication at Stellenbosch University and Community Journalism at UNISA. She joined the NSCF Hub Team on 1 July 2019. She considers her science communication career as an accidental dream come true.
What she loves most about her job is establishing genuine relationships with the people in the network and working towards having the NSCF and collections known and understood throughout South Africa. Fulufhelo has experience in outreach, media liaison, social media management, science and general communication and administration, which she gained during her time with her previous employer, National Science and Technology Forum (NSTF).
Dr Ian Engelbrecht
012 843 5194
His special passion though is for scorpions and mygalomorph spiders where he conducts research on diversity, systematics and distributions.
Mr Mahlatse Kgatla
Data Quality Specialist
012 843 5196
Mahlatse just joined the NSCF as a Data Quality Specialist working with museums. He did his BSc Environmental Science at University of Pretoria and BSc (Hon) Environmental Management at UNISA. He got introduced to biodiversity data management as a Groen Sebenza intern. He later joined the invasive alien sector as a project officer, with the main task of coordinating, integrating and mobilizing invasive alien plant species data. He then moved to the Foundational Biodiversity Information Programme (FBIP) where he was responsible for the data from funded projects. One of his main responsibilities was to ensure the data sets coming in met the FBIP and international data standards.
Mahlatse enjoys playing a supporting role to others wherever possible. He also enjoys outdoor activities and from time to time likes doing something unexpected.
When he seemingly has nothing to do he likes to indulge in a bit of R programming where he is developing an online analysis tool in Shiny.
NSCF Data Technician Team:
Ms Given Leballo
Ms Fezile Mathenjwa
Ms Maxine Manickum
Maxine holds a BSc degree Honours in Biological Science from the University of KwaZulu-Natal (Westville) and is currently pursuing her Masters degree in Botany. Before being employed by the NSCF, she worked for SANBI KwaZulu-Natal Herbarium for five years as a Project Administrator. Through her five years at the herbarium, she also data-captured, quality controlled, verified and georeferenced plant specimens on the BRAHMS database. As a Biodiversity Data Technician, her role is to Data capture and quality control plant specimens from labels, georeference localities and assist NSCF partner institutions with data cleaning and upgrading.
When she is not working, she enjoys spending time with friends and family, giving back to the community and indulging in delicious foods.
Ms Ketelo Dinala
Apart from work, she is a mother and a wife and enjoys spending quality time with family.
Ms Ayanda Mnikathi
Ayanda‘s work entails capturing type and hand written specimen labels into Brahms database and Digivol Trancribe, data quality control as well georeferencing localities on specimen labels. This position teaches a lot about the value of preserving research data. Ayanda holds a BSC. Honours Grassland Science and almost at the end of her Masters degree with the University of KwaZulu-Natal (UKZN) research looking at the application of Geographic Information Systems (GIS) and Remote Sensing (RS) in assessing the impacts of alien infestations on veld grazing capacity. When not devoted to work or school work, she enjoys taking her daughters out to a park or to the mall.