Prof. Vivienne Lawack

Prof. Vivienne Lawack is an academic at University of Port Elizabeth (UPE), in South Africa between 1995 to June 2002. She taught Law of Payment Instruments, Corporate and advanced corporate law, Intellectual Property Law and Competition Law. She also curriculated and started IT Law at UPE. Her disciplinary research publications then and at present centres around legal and regulatory frameworks in payment systems, fintech, and banking and financial markets, with a particular lense of financial inclusion, financial integrity and migration. 

In July 2003 until December 2006 she held various positions, namely senior payment system analyst, senior legal consultant and Manager: Financial Safety Net at the South African Reserve Bank (SARB). She was also appointed as chief drafter of the National Payment System Amendment Act in 2006 and the Dedicated Banks Act. Professor Lwack joined Strate Ltd, SA’s central securities repository, where she was the Senior Legal Counsel, responsible for securities and IT legal work, as well as the amendment of the Strate Rules (as regulator of brokers). 

In July 2008 until March 2015, she joined NMMU as Executive Dean of the Faculty of Law. From 2009 she led the national LLB Curriculum Reform project as President of the South African Law Deans Association, a position she held between 2009-2015. A highlight was co-chairing the National Summit in 2013 with the late CEO of the Law Society of South Africa, Nic Swart, and being one of the key drafters of the CHE National Standards for the LLB programme, against which all law programmes in SA were reviewed. 

She was also involved in a number of other legislative drafting projects and advisory input into national and SADC legislation. Prof. Lwack was a consultant and drafted the reviewer for the SADC Model Law on National Payment Instruments, which was approved by SADC Committee of Central Bank Governors in 2017.

Prof. Lawack is currently the Deputy Vice Chancellor (DVC) Academic at University of the Western Cape (UWC), responsible for leading the academic project at UWC. Her terms was extended by Council for another 5 years. She was also the Acting Rector and Vice Chancellor of UWC from 1 February to 31 July 2020, incidentally leading the university during the COVID-19 crisis.

She chairs and is a member of various boards and councils. A few are: current Chair of the SA DVC Academic Forum, founding Afric board member, Board member of the Kepler Institute in Kigali, Past Chair of the Cape Higher Education Consortium Board and returning member of the South African Judicial Institute (SAJEI) Council, chaired by the Chief Justice of SA.

Prof. Lawack obtained her B.Juris ( cum laude), LLB cum laude at the former University if Port Elizabeth (now Nelson Mandela University) in 1993 and 1995, respectively. She obtained an LLM degree from UPE in 1997 and her LLM dissertation was titled “Electronic payment systems in South African law”. She graduated from the University of South Africa (Unisa) with a Doctor of Laws in 2001 (at age of 29). The doctoral thesis was titled “Aspects of Internet payment Instruments in South Africa”. She is an admitted Advocate of the High Court in SA since Dec 1995 on the non-practising roll).

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