Shireen Chengadu

Shireen Chengadu
Shireen Chengadu

​Shireen is currently serving as acting Director of University Relations: University of Pretoria. From December 2002, she served in various executive roles at GIBS, her final role being that of executive director of the Centre for Leadership and Dialogue and Enterprise Development Academy at the University of Pretoria’s Gordon Institute of Business Science.  Previously she also carried executive responsibility for the Academic Programmes portfolio. She continues to hold an adjunct faculty status at GIBS where she teaches open, corporate and MBA elective programmes.  Through her growing venture, Chengadu Advisory, she consults to corporates investing in building inclusive work environments and building more effective business, government and societal partnerships.


Shireen holds an Executive MBA from the Graduate School of Business, University of Cape Town (GSB), a Bachelor of Pedagogics (Arts) from University of Durban Westville, a Bachelor of Education (Honours) and a Masters in Education from the University of Natal. Her MBA dissertation for which she received a first pass focused on the character traits of successful high impact women Entrepreneurs in South Africa. She is currently registered for a PhD at UCT GSB focusing on the intersectionality between Gender, race and class.


Over the last decade, Shireen has built extensive experience in the areas of business and management education and has gained board level experience in the education, consulting and NGO sectors.


Two of her notable business accolades include; Nomination for Finweek’s 10 Women to Watch, August 2014 and a finalist for Top Businesswoman of the Year Award category at 11th Annual Standard Bank Top Women Awards, also in 2014. Shireen is invited for her thought leadership expertise onto various media platforms. She consults to corporates in South Africa on their women in leadership development and inclusive work imperatives. She is passionate about millennials and mentors a number of young women and men.  Through extensive work – related travel she has gained a richer world view of the intersectionality between politics, economics and societal dynamics and has forged a diverse and collaborative network.


She describes herself as a reluctant writer and researcher.  Her intellectual curiosity peaked during her MBA studies and supervision of MBA dissertations.  Now she is relishing every opportunity to seek new knowledge where race, gender and class intersect. She is co-editor of the peer reviewed Women Leadership in Emerging Markets book to be published by Routledge in June 2017.


The legacy of apartheid in South Africa and her humble working class roots spurred her on to earn her leadership seat at decision-making tables; that journey a constant reminder that growth has no limitations except those that are self- imposed. She loves to remind herself and others that this is her best decade yet!

Contact Details
  • ​Executive MBA (UCT GSB)
  • M.Ed (UKZN)
  • B.Ed (Hons) (UKZN)
  • BA (University of Durban Westville)
Fields of Interest
  • ​Women leadership

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