Hettie van der Merwe is Professor of Educational Leadership and Management in the College of Education at the University of South Africa (UNISA). Her main academic and research interests concern the provision of good quality education within context. She has carried out research and published on various aspects of school functioning in South Africa in relation to proper school management for proper education. She is a member of the Education Association of South Africa (EASA); the South African Association for Research and Development in Higher Education (SAARDHE); and the Southern African Comparative and History of Education Society (SAHCES).
Professor Van der Merwe will deliver keynote speech titled "A Lifebuoy Environment for Successful Learning in Conditions of Multiple Deprivation: What Are the Basics?".