Richard Chivaka

HOD Spark Health | Associate Professor
PhD in Accounting (University of Cape Town) | MSc in Accounting & Finance (University of Manchester, UK) | B.Com (Honours) in Accounting (National University of Science & Technology, Zimbabwe)
Business Strategy, Strategic Cost Management, Supply Chain Management, Business Process Improvement

Dr Richard Chivaka is an Associate Professor of Business Strategy & Supply Chain Management at the University of Cape Town, Graduate School of Business. Dr Chivaka is the Founding Director of Spark Health, a partnership between the University of Cape Town Graduate School of Business and Johnson & Johnson. Spark Health is an intensive mentoring and team transformation program that strengthens health systems through culture change, with a strong focus on transformational leadership. Dr Chivaka is a visiting Professor and the inaugural Research Scholar of the Stanford Business School's Institute for Innovation in Developing Economies (SEED), at Stanford University, USA. His work with SEED focuses on supporting the development of African entrepreneurs to scale up and sustain their business. In this regard, Dr Chivaka teaches Value Chain Innovations and Operations Management on the Stanford SEED Transformation program based in East and West Africa. As the first SEED Scholar, Dr Chivaka's research projects focused on value creation through value chain innovations in developing economies. Passionate and highly skilled professional, Dr Chivaka thrives in building responsive, country-centered, and innovative programs to accelerate public health and economic development. He has multi-country expertise in strengthening organizations, designing and building teams, and programs across diverse stakeholders. He possesses extensive expertise in serving as a bridge between business, health, and governments in African contexts to achieve a shared vision. Dr Chivaka brings unique abilities to pair these skills and competencies with robust and responsive execution in order to deliver sustained results in dynamic and high stakes environments. He demonstrates vision and leadership in realizing impact across organizational, institutional, national and regional levels in both public sector healthcare and private sector organizations. Dr Chivaka thrives in both self-managed and team-based environments. He is inspired by a deep personal commitment to transforming future generations, a can-do attitude, and a love for the communities for whom he works. Dr Chivaka strongly believes that improving the welfare of Africans, providing better economic opportunities and promoting social cohesion requires among other strategies, enhancing the competitiveness of businesses on the one hand, and improving public healthcare service delivery, on the other.

At the University of Cape Town Graduate School of Business, he has taught business strategy on the MBA programme, as well as on the Associate in Management (AIM) and Postgraduate Diploma in Business Administration (PDBA). He has served as the Academic Convener of the MBA programme. Dr Chivaka has served as the Deputy Dean (Research & Post Graduate Affairs) for the Faculty of Commerce. He has also served on numerous committees, such as Higher Degrees Committee (Chair), Commerce Faculty Research Committee (Chair), Board for Graduate Studies (Commerce representative), Post-Graduate Funding (Commerce representative), and Rate for Job Review Committee (Commerce representative). Dr Chivaka has served as a University of Cape Town Senate member.

Within the global health, Dr Chivaka has been involved in the United Nations General Assembly Week discussions about ways of strengthening health systems through leadership and management development, data-based decisions and technology.

Dr Chivaka's main main interests, experience, and specialist skills are in the following: Business strategy, value chain innovations, supply chain management, and health systems strengthening through leadership and management capacity development. His mission lies at the nexus of poverty reduction and improved healthcare. Dr Chivaka strongly believes that it is possible to improve the welfare of Africans, provide better economic opportunities and promote social cohesion by enhancing the competitiveness of businesses on the one hand, AND improving public healthcare service delivery, on the other. In order to generate more and better economic opportunities, innovation (in its various facets) should be at the heart of enterprise development, improved business competitiveness and economic growth. The healthcare-economic development link to poverty reduction ought to be strengthened through through public policies, program and projects that acknowledge the reality that it is much harder for sick people to get out of poverty because they cannot physically work for themselves as well as healthy people can.

Dr Chivaka has written a number of peer-reviewed articles, a book and several book chapters. His publications in both academic and practitioners' journals are mainly on issues around supply chain management and strategic cost management. In addition, Dr Chivaka worked as a Chief Operating Officer, has undertaken a number of consulting projects in supply chain management, the major ones being the United Nations Industrial Development Organization Infrastructure Supplier Benchmarking Programme for South Africa, and the Ernst & Young Lumus Supply Chain Risk and Performance Toolkit Project. He has also done value chain analysis projects, such as for the Retail Division of Metropolitan Life which was part of a larger project covering business strategy, process improvement and cost optimisation, designed a supply chain Activity-Based Costing system for Nestle South Africa, and worked with National Treasury and German Technical Cooperation as an independent consultant on the Municipal Financial Management Capacity Building Project. He has been hired by the German Academic Exchange Services (DAAD) to serve as a consultant to evaluate the Namibian-German Centre for Logistics. Recently, he was hired by the Clinton Health Access Initiative (CHAI) to support leadership and management capacity building in the Lesotho Ministry of Health. He was also hired as a consultant by the Uganda Investment Authority to review and advise on the National Investment Policy for Aquaculture Parks for continued expansion, efficiency, and attraction of investment opportunities.

Dr Chivaka has served as a Board Member of the Chartered Institute of Purchasing & Supply Trust Southern Africa, and Ubuntu Africa. Outside the University of Cape Town, Dr Chivaka is a reviewer of journal articles for Management Research News and the South African Journal of Accounting Research.  In addition, he has been involved as an external examiner for the University of Johannesburg, as well as for the School for Defence Organisation and Resource Management, University of Stellenbosch.