Professor Wekwete is an experienced and accomplished academic, international development practitioner, manager and researcher. He holds the following qualifications:
- BA (Hons) Geography and History – 1976 (Leeds University)
- MA Environmental Planning – 1978 (Nottingham University)
- Phd Urban and Regional Planning – 1982 (London University)
His immediate post doctoral experience was with the Department of Physical Planning, Ministry of Local Government and Housing in the immediate post independence in Zimbabwe where he gained practical experience in urban, rural and regional planning in Zimbabwe, and was actively involved in the implementation of the growth centre policy. Professor Wekwete was appointed Lecturer in the newly established Department of Rural and Urban Planning at the University of Zimbabwe in 1984, to spearhead teaching, curriculum development and professional development of urban, rural and regional planning. Professor Wekwete served as Chairman of Rural and Urban Planning, Deputy Dean and Dean of the Faculty of Social Studies and remained the principal lecturer in urban planning throughout his tenure at the University of Zimbabwe.
Professor Wekwete has published extensively in books, journals and conference papers and is a world renowned author in urban planning and local development. He has edited and authored books and articles on planning urban economies in Africa, Decentralisation and local governance in Africa; and on Urban management. He has served as external examiner in the planning faculties of the following universities: Dar es Salaam; Copperbelt; Witwatersrand; Nairobi and New York universities.
In 1993 Professor Wekwete was globally recognized and appointed Senior Adviser to the United Nations, joining a team of experts managing and supporting the Urban Management Program established by a consortium of the World Bank, United Nations Development Program and UN Habitat. He also served as Senior Advisor to the UN Habitat technical cooperation division supporting the formulation of urban programs to support municipalities and cities. This established him as an Africa and Global authority on urban planning and management.
In 1999 Prof. Wekwete was reassigned to the United Nations headquarters as Senior Technical Advisor for the United Nations Capital Development Fund, an organisation focusing on the needs of the so least developed countries. In 2002 Professor Wekwete was appointed Director of the Local Development Program globally and was responsible for capital funding and programming in 35 countries. He directed a team of global technical advisers and program managers at country and regional levels to support the formulation and implementation of the local development fund programs supporting capacity building of local and subnational governments in the least developed countries.
He is a corporate member of the Zimbabwe Institute of Regional and Urban Planners (ZIRUP), African Association of Planners (AAP), African Association of Public Management (AAPAM), and is associate member of both the UK and USA Urban and Regional Planning institutes.
Professor Wekwete continues to support African governments in shaping and strengthening planning and development institutions through research and is a lead consulting expert for Africa for many of the international development partners. He believes education is the key to unlocking the potential of many countries suffering from underdevelopment.