Please see our employee profiles; you’ll find out their individual qualifications, what they enjoy outside of the RIIS family and their preferred super power.

Whats it like to work at RIIS

See what happens behind the scenes at RIIS

Davis Cook


Davis is our Chief Executive here at RIIS; his passion for innovation is evident in both his business and social life. His extensive educational background is made up of his BSc in Physics & Applied Mathematics, and BA. in Politics, Philosophy & Economics. He also has an MSc in Development Studies from SOAS, and a Global Executive MBA from IESE Business School. In his down time Davis can be found participating in almost any adventure sport due to him being an expert martial artist, having lightning reflexes and a complete lack of fear.



Clen is an Executive at RIIS and is currently studying towards his MBA in Business Administration. Aside from studying his MBA Clen has received qualifications in Programming and Business Management. Clen has worked extensively with multiple start-ups and incubators. In his off time Clen enjoys rowing and jumping out of aeroplanes- adrenaline junkie!

Thiru Swettenham

Chief Operating Officer

Thiru has extensive experience in programme and project management, implementation of regional (SADC) and national innovation programmes, multi-partner stakeholder management, entrepreneurship, innovation support, social entrepreneurship, training, capacity building and monitoring & evaluation. She holds BSc Hons (Bio), B Com (Bus Man & Ind Psych), and M Phil (STS). In her spare time, she enjoys reading, travel and crafts.

Rinus Schwim

Senior Consultant

Rinus’ initial studies have a highly scientific influence, he has completed a BSc in Biological Sciences with a specific focus of Environmental Microbiology and Human Physiology. He also holds a qualification in BSC Honours in Medical Microbiology and MSc in Medical Microbiology for which he was awarded Cum Laude. Rinus enjoys gaming, anime, making music and listening to good Djen.

Alexandra Lugagne

Senior Consultant

Alex, as she is affectionately known, began her studies with a Bachelor of Arts in English Linguistics, Civilisation and Literature from the Paris IV, Sorbonne University. She then obtained an MSc in Public Health (Health Promotion) from the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine. Alex has gained experience in communications and reporting with the United Nations in South Africa, and more recently, as part of RIIS, she has focused on the social impact and footprint of the mining industry in South Africa. For leisure Alex enjoys trying to climb on things, hanging out with her three dogs and trying to become a better handyman around the house.

Nahungu Lionjanga


Nahungu began her studies with a BEng in Civil Engineering. She then obtained a BEng Honours in Transportation Engineering and an MEng in Transportation Engineering. Nahungu takes pleasure in spending quality time with her loved ones, tutoring learners in underprivileged communities, and enlightening herself with Oprah’s SuperSoul Conversations. She also collects stories of people’s experiences using public transport as a stepping-stone towards identifying the levers of transport justice. A special interest of hers is to engage in spoken word poetry.

Louis Moussi Sopp


Louis has an interest in economics which he has explored through several degrees and certifications. Louis holds a B.Com in Economics and Finance, a B.Com Honours in Economics and a M.Com in Applied Economics. He alsohas a certification in public economics from the GTAC, and published a paper for the African Development Bank on mineral resource accounting in Africa. Louis enjoys watching and playing soccer as well as hiking, reading and playing sports. If he isin’t enjoying his time in the outdoors he is watching Netflix, chilling at home or cooking.

Lithakazi Nxiweni


Litha began her studies by completing a Bachelor of Engineering in Chemical Engineering. Litha’s interests outside of her work life include reading, art and animals.

Lindokuhle Simelane

Senior Analyst

Lindo has completed a BA degree in Economics as well as a MSc in economics. Lindo enjoys cooking especially when it comes to trying new and challenging recipes. In her leisure time Lindo enjoys shopping, spending time with her family and friends, dancing and the odd outdoor activity.  

Vishaylin J. Mahadeo

Senior Analyst

Vishaylin has qualifications in a Bachelor of Science, majoring in Physiology and Psychology, Honours in Health Science with specific focus on Physiology and a Diploma in Business Administration. He has received certifications for Project Management and Python Basics. Vishaylin spends his time away from the office socializing with friends or finding the nearest mountain on which to snowboard.


Senior Analyst

Alana joined the RIIS team as one of the first graduates in South Africa to complete a B. Design Degree majoring in innovative processes and business studies. She has also completed and received certifications in project management and negotiations. Alana loves creating and exploring art, playing drums, cycling, travelling and spending time with her dogs.

Nandi Mtethwa

Senior Analyst

Nandi’s passion for innovation is what attracted her to RIIS and its values. Nandi enjoys reading, assembling pieces of furniture or décor for herself and travelling. You can find Nandi on holiday wherever there is the warm sun and a beach not too far away. For leisure Nandi enjoys playing with her dogs and anything food related!

Tahira Moosa


Tahira has completed a BSc in Geoscience and Aquatic Science and a BSc Honours in Geoscience. She has also gained certifications in the following courses; GIS, Poject Management and First Aid. Tahira enjoys rock climbing, practising yoga and socializing with new friends and old.

ERIKA Booysen


Erika is our caretaker and most importantly our support system at RIIS. Her passion for learning and creation has her as the perfect colleague to help you out in any scenario. She has an extensive knowledge about almost everything from learning about other cultures to how to build a tiny house. If she is learning something new she is happy. In her spare time Erika enjoys spending quality time with her loved ones, a good book, a cup of hot chocolate and the sound of rain refreshing the Earth.

Life at RIIS