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Our Vision

To position UJ as one of the leading Universities
in the fourth industrial revolution. IIS provides
a platform for scholars and practitioners, both
internal and external to UJ, to contribute to
the rigorous production and dissemination
of knowledge in areas aligned to the fourth
industrial revolution.

What We Do

Dedicated to driving the 4IR

One of the strategic thrusts of the University of Johannesburg (UJ) is to lead Africa into the Fourth Industrial Revolution. The Institute for Intelligent Systems (IIS) was established in 2016 within the University to act as a catalyst towards the UJ Strategy for Global Excellence and Stature (GES). IIS is one of UJ's flagship institutes for Global Excellence and Stature (GES 4.0).

Academic Development

The Institute deals with the development of multidisciplinary taught and online programs for postgraduate qualification and continuing professional development, for capacity building in the areas of machine learning, artificial intelligence, data science, Internet of Things (IoT), to name but a few areas.

Strategic Research

Research is currently being done to implement various 4IR technologies in fields such as Cyber-Physical Systems, Optimization, Predictive Maintenance, Controls and Communication.

Enterprise Development

IIS's enterprise facet works with industry and government entities in solving their problems using state of- the-art innovations.


Artificial Intelligence (AI) has emerged as a key cross-cutting technological feature of the Fourth Industrial Revolution, that has begun to penetrate all sectors of society. AI is strongly associated with the context of its application, and everything from the financial services to healthcare now implore AI application, research and development. There is an overwhelming need for Artificial Intelligence skills across South Africa and the globe, with a high demand for specialized research and development, and applied skills in AI.

In keeping with the University of Johannesburg’s focus on leading the way in the
Fourth Industrial Revolution, UJ’s flagship institute, IIS, is offering a multidisciplinary professional masters programme in AI. The Master of AI programme is the first of its kind in the country and takes a sharp, deep, quantitative, qualitative, conceptual, empirical, creative and analytically creative approach that will give students a good handle on this complex and dynamic field.



Honours or NQF level 8 qualification in Engineering, Commerce or Economics, or Mathematical Sciences, Natural Sciences or Computer Science.

Bachelor of Technology in aforementioned disciplines/fields, with at least one year of relevant work experience or research experience.

Students are selected on the basis of academic merit and an approved field(s) of study. Students must have completed a minimum of NQF level 5 Mathematics during undergraduate studies.


This programme is offered through full-time (1-year) or part-time (2 years) study. Master of Artificial Intelligence is a professional masters qualification that combines eight taught modules and an independent research project:

  • Programming for Artificial Intelligence
  • Mathematics and Statistics for Artificial Intelligence
  • Research Methodology
  • Psychology and Artificial Intelligence
  • Brain Morphology and Functionality
  • Machine Learning
  • Ethics of Artificial Intelligence
  • Research Project
  • Elective in Applied Artificial Intelligence


The university will soon be accepting applications for this programme via the online application system. Should you be interested in applying for the programme, please visit and apply for the Master of Artificial Intelligence with Programme Code: M6AI2Q. Then email certified copies of your supporting documents to with your reference number as the subject line.

Please note that there are a limited number of seats available for the 2022 programme intake. Candidates will be selected on the basis of eligibility and
academic merit.


For further information and queries relating to this programme, you may contact:
Dr Uche Okonkwo



Our Team Members

Working on the future

Working together, over scientific disciplines to solve real-world problems through the implementation of 4IR.

Babu Sena Paul

Institute for Intelligent Systems
Phone: +27 (0) 11 559 4404

Wireless Communication, Wireless Sensor Network, Fourth Industrial Revolution Technologies

More Detail

Mpho Raborife

Institute for Intelligent Systems

Computational Linguistics

More Detail

Terence L. van Zyl

Nedbank Research and Innovation Chair, Institute for Intelligent Systems (Affiliations: IEEE, ACM)

Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning, Spatial-Temporal Data Analyses

More Detail

Tapiwa Chagonda

Head: Centre for Data Ethics
Institute for Intelligent Systems
Phone: +27(0)11 559 3827

Zimbabwe Working-class Politics

More Detail

Malesela John Lamola

Associate Professor
Institute for Intelligent Systems (Affiliations: IEEE, CODESRIA, ISAPS)

Philosophy of technology, Ethics of Artificial Intelligence

More Detail

Thokozani Shongwe

Associate Professor
Center for Telecommunications, Institute for Intelligent Systems

Digital communications (synchronization, modulation and channel coding); power-line communications; visible light communications; information theory

More Detail

Theo G. Swart

Associate Professor
Center for Telecommunications, Institute for Intelligent Systems

Information theory, Error correction coding, Line coding, Digital communications, Power-line communications

More Detail

Uche K. Okonkwo

Senior Lecturer
Institute for Intelligent Systems
Phone: (+27)0115592153

Molecular Communication, IoT, Artificial Intelligence, Complex Systems, Signal processing and Wireless Communication

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Herman Myburgh

Senior Lecturer
Institute for Intelligent Systems

Extended Reality, Application of 4IR in Health, Microbial diversity, Genetics

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Makhamisa Senekane

Senior Researcher
Institute for Intelligent Systems

Data Science, Data Privacy, Quantum Information Science, Cybersecurity, Electronics

More Detail

Tshidi Rashama

Administrative Secretary
Institute for Intelligent Systems
Phone: 011 559 2153
More Detail

Our latest team-member

SPOT Robot joins the Research Team at the Institute for Intelligent Systems (IIS), University of Johannesburg

The fourth industrial revolution (4IR), a revolution that is fuelled by a suite of advanced and disruptive technologies, promises the development and deployment of new applications and services that will significantly change how people live, interact, and work. In this regard, the Institute for Intelligent Systems (IIS) a flagship institute of the University of Johannesburg (UJ) has positioned itself to drive the 4IR initiative in the university and the continent of Africa at large. Among the enabling technologies of the 4IR are robotics, artificial intelligence (AI), Internet of Everything (IoE), advanced communication technology (5G, 6G, and beyond 6G), nanotechnology, big data, extended reality, 3D printing, and blockchain. These technologies form the basis of research and industrial solutions provided by the IIS.

In pushing the boundary of knowledge around and beyond the 4IR niche, and as a part of its research and development drive towards the 4IR readiness, the IIS has acquired a sophisticated agile mobile robot, the SPOT. The SPOT robot manufactured by Boston Dynamics® is a robot dog that can navigate terrains with unprecedented mobility under a considerably heavy load. Researchers at the IIS intend to put SPOT in use to aid in the development and testing of sophisticated AI algorithms and 4IR-driven solutions for various application areas such as healthcare, disaster management, construction, mining, and industrial inspection/ maintenance. For instance, 4IR-driven solutions for contactless vital signs measurement and symptoms evaluation in pandemic scenarios that minimize the exposure of medical personnel to infection can be independently developed and mounted on the SPOT platform and tested. In other applications, such as disaster management and mining operations where the direct human involvement will be very dangerous and undesirable, 4IR solutions can be integrated into the SPOT system as added functionalities to perform the desired tasks. The ability to extend the functionality of SPOT to achieve customized tasks other than the proprietary ones is due to its unique flexibility and the possibility of utilizing pre-built solutions from an existing network of third-party software and hardware providers to create custom controls, program autonomous missions, and integrate sensor inputs into data analysis tools.

More information

Solving real-world problems

Recent Projects

Various problems face the world.  However, we believe that through the application of technological solutions we can create a better world, sooner.

AllSmart SystemseHealthApp DesignAI
Transfer Learning and Deep Metric Learning for Automated Galaxy Morphology Representation
Transfer Learning and Deep Metric Learning for Automated Galaxy Morphology Representation


Smart air & water quality monitoring system (AWQMS)
Smart air & water quality monitoring system (AWQMS)

Smart Systems

Student Mental Health System
Student Mental Health System

Smart Systems


App Design



Do you want to work with us?

Developing a plan that is custom-built for your business.

Short Learning Programmes

Learn with us

At IIS, we offer various short learning programmes to take your skillset to the next level. No matter where you are, our online courses will ensure that you are always knowledgeable about the latest happenings in 4IR technologies.

Upon completion of this short learning program, participants will gain knowledge, exposure and experience in data-driven innovation which can be used to turn data into insights, value and innovation. Duration: 9 weeks Commenced: June 2020

This SLP is based on the current and growing demand for training in engineering manufacturing design and production in the Fourth Industrial Revolution. The skills in demand include Engineering and manufacturing systems, integration and modelling. The key objective is to develop skills in 4IR. Duration: 1 Year Commenced: November 2020

The key focus of this SLP is to train graduates in engineering and business systems. The students will be able to engage with the integrated Engineering business sytems using an advanced 4IR toolset. Students will also be able to develop a technical design specifically for engineering application and development. Duration: 1 year Commenced: November 2020

The SLP is structured to provide a foundation for students to develop and grow Full Stack web development skills in the context of 4IR which may be used in entrepreneurial, consulting or commercial manufacturing ventures. Duration: 1 year Commenced: November 2020

Computational Intelligence (machine learning) tools are the engines behind business analytics and predictive analytics. This programme will provide the necessary bridging or grounding for the research based Masters in Computational Intelligence or fourth industrial revolution related domain. As an inter-disciplinary course, these topics covered have a technical as well as a business focus. Duration: 12 days Commenced: June 2019

A range of topics are covered in this course within the realm of the 4th Industrial revolution - History of Artificial Intelligence (Al) and Accounting, Al, Machine Learning, Natural Language Processing (NLP), Blockchain and Ethics. As an inter-disciplinary course, these topics covered have a technical as well as a business focus. Duration: 8 weeks Commenced: June 2019

The SLP is structured to provide a foundation for students to develop and grow Full Stack web development skills in the context of 4IR which may be used in entrepreneurial, consulting or commercial manufacturing ventures. Duration: 1 year Commenced: November 2020

What's happening

Latest IIS News

Always busy ensuring that modern technological approaches are implemented in a sustainable manner - below is a collection of the latest news.

Prof Mpho Raborife appointed as Deputy Director at UJ’s Institute for Intelligent Systems

The Institute for Intelligent Systems (IIS) at the University of Johannesburg (UJ), is delighted to announce the appointment of Dr Mpho Raborife as Associate Professor and the new Deputy Director. She will be joining the Institute in March 2022. Prof Raborife holds a PhD in Computer Science and her main areas of research are computational linguistics. […]

University of Johannesburg and I-DAIR collaboration set to advance the health sector in the 4IR sphere

The University of Johannesburg (UJ) recently signed a strategic agreement with Fondation pour l’institut de hautes études internationales et du développement acting through The International Digital Health and Artificial Intelligence Research Collaborative (I-DAIR) who are based in Geneva, Switzerland. Both UJ and I-DAIR have a common interest in contributing to the United Nations (UN) Sustainable Development Goal #3 on […]

SLP: Data Driven Innovation

UJ the first university in South Africa to secure AI robot ‘dog’ – SPOT

​The University of Johannesburg (UJ)’s Institute for Intelligent Systems (IIS) has acquired a sophisticated agile mobile robot (SPOT), in what is a first for academia in South Africa and on the African continent. The robot, which is manufactured by Boston Dynamics® in the United States of America, is a ‘dog’ that can navigate terrains with unprecedented mobility under a considerably […]

The Disruptive Fourth Industrial Revolution – Technology, Society and Beyond

Edited by Wesley Doorsamy, Babu Sena Paul and Tshilidzi Marwala

Contact Us

Get In Touch

Get answers and advices from professional consultants.


B2 LAB 217 Auckland Park Campus, University of Johannesburg


+27(0)11 559 4404 / 2153

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