Get to know some of the researchers at the University of the Free State whose work is inspiring excellence and transforming lives globally.

In addition to the experts listed below, the UFS also boasts a unique research centre: The International Studies Group (ISG), which comprises  a wide network of postgraduate researchers each with their own specialist field.

To arrange an interview with any of our experts, please contact our media office at

Prof Anthony Turton
Area of expertise: Water management, wastewater, and environmental management
Faculty/Department: Centre for Environmental Management

Anthony Turton is a transboundary waters specialist, with his original interest being in the series of problems and opportunities that arise when a natural resource like water, vital to any economy, is shared by two or more legal users. This work has many dimensions to it, ranging from the international – where sovereignty is a key factor – to the inter-sectoral at the sub-sovereign level. Central to this is the interface between science, engineering, technology and decision-making. It is this intersection that makes the work unique, because water is an economic enabler, and in a water constrained economy, it is also a national security issue. 

Anthony pioneered the notion of water as a national security risk in an African context, having been involved in a number of strategic engagements in this field. Decision-making implies information that is often incomplete, sometimes contested, and in almost all cases, provided against a background uf uncertainty and high risk. This is the realm of decision support systems capable of generating actionable intelligence. This has led to the commercial development of artificial intelligence and machine learning, often at the bleeding edge of technology development. This is the space that intersects with capita and the high tech start-up space. Current work is of a commercial nature in the sugar and ethanol industries, centred on AI and ML systems.

There is a transboundary rivers component playing out in the Middle East, where simulation models are being developed that enable alternative decisions to be gamed in a low risk environment. There are also Middle East developments centred on the creation of high impact teams of specialists, capable of developing bleeding edge technology in short periods of time.


Prof Turton's opinion articles:

Contact Details:

Find an expert

We use cookies to make interactions with our websites and services easy and meaningful. To better understand how they are used, read more about the UFS cookie policy. By continuing to use this site you are giving us your consent to do this.