Derrick Swartz is Advisor: Strategic Projects in Ocean Sciences at Nelson Mandela University in South Africa. He previously served as the Vice-Chancellor of the University of Fort Hare from 1999 to 2007, and Nelson Mandela University, in South Africa from 2008 to 2017.

Prof Swartz holds DPhil in Sociology of development and industrialization from Essex University, and is the recipient of an Honorary Doctorate in Human Rights Law from Essex University in 2008. Previously, he worked extensively in higher education policy, institutional development and sustainability innovations in South Africa.

His current interests are Ocean Science and Technology innovations in enabling communities, particularly in Africa and the developing world, to cope with pressures of climate change, ocean health, population growth and inclusive economic development.