The current Mayor of the City of Dodoma, who is also an immediately past professor of Geography at the University of Dodoma and a previous senior lecturer in geography at the University of Dar es es Salaam, is an alumnus of the University of Dar es Salaam. He is a UDSM graduate of the 1983 graduating class. Davis George Mwamfupe was born on 27 September 1956 in Rungwe district in Mbeya and attended the early phases of education in his home district. He proceeded with ordinary and high school for a total of six years before joining the University of Dar es Salaam at the-then Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences in 1980. One of the disciplines he loved most and subsequently majored in was Geography. He fully immersed himself in its key themes of study, including physical geography, economic geography, climatology, land evaluation, regional development planning, and many others. He passed the three-year bachelor degree programme with honours and, on account of the distinctive academic performance he demonstrated, he was retained by the Department of Geography for a staff-development position as a Tutorial Assistant. In 1985 he enrolled into a two-year postgraduate programme, obtaining an M.A. (Geography) in 1987 and becoming an assistant lecturer in 1987/88. Four years later, in 1991, he secured a scholarship for undertaking a doctoral study programme at the University of Glasgow in Scotland, which he successfully completed in 1994. He returned with a PhD degree and added to the strength of his department in particular and of the Faculty and the University in general.
From that time, Dr. Mwamfupe’s career spanned over a wider area of academic, research and administrative responsibilities. From the position of a lecturer he had attained in 1994 upon return from UK with a PhD, he rose steadily to senior lecturer (2002-2009). This went in tandem with an increased role in field research work, classroom teaching and consultancy work as well. Organisationally, he served as a head of department (Geography) for three years from 1998–2000, subsequently as Dean, Faculty of Arts and Humanities at a newly established college of the University—the
Dar es Salaam University College of Education, DUCE—for three years from 20052008. These two administrative-management positions came at a time the University was busy charting out its way within a framework of a ‘corporate strategic plan’, which demanded an active leadership role and accountability for the success of various units within the overarching institutional transformation programme. In this regard, Davis participated fully in the planning, restructuring and/or upgrading of the academic programmes of the arts-and-humanities side of the new constituent college (DUCE), including the teaching and research prospects of his own discipline of Geography. From the point of view of the University of Dar es Salaam, it was at this point in time that the keen staff search efforts of the management team of a previously founded University of Dodoma (UDOM) in 2008 landed on a man who was not only an experienced geography lecturer but also an energetic dean of a faculty, an ardent researcher and a resourceful academic advisor—Dr. Mwamfupe. He agreed to relocate to Dodoma for contribution to the wider needs of yet another national university.
Thus, within the next six months from October 2008–March 2009 at UDOM, energetic and ardent Davis Mwamfupe had been appointed not only associate professor but also
as Acting Dean for the School of Social Sciences. In 2009, he was not only appointed Associate Professor of Geography but also confirmed as Dean of the School of Social Sciences, holding this management position until June 2014. Within the span of six years (2008–2014), Professor Mwamfupe had also served at different key levels of university governance at UDOM: as a member and subsequently chairperson of the Social Science School Board; as a member of the College of Education Board; as a member of the University Senate; and as a member of the University Tender Board. He became full Professor at UDOM in 2018. For the whole period he has been at UDOM, and thereafter, Professor Mwamfupe has been on hand to serve as external reviewer/examiner at the Geography Department and he has, accordingly, provided the necessary inputs, opinions and advice needed on the department’s academic programmes.
Early in 2017, the Honourable Minister in the President’s Office responsible for Regional Administration and Local Government (TAMISEMI) appointed Professor Mwamfupe, councillor on the Council of the City of Dodoma. From the wider council membership, Davis Mwamfupe was elected Honourable Mayor. Academics are always fond of asking questions behind events. With respect to this appointment of an academic-turned-civic-administrator, little doubt has ever been raised regarding the appointment. One of the hints is the man’s geographical and planning knowledge and skills for an emerging national capital city. His survey and mapping skills in physical geography, urban planning and urban renewal would naturally find themselves welcome ingredients in the greening and layout strategies for Dodoma.
Professor Mwamfupe has to his credit a total of not less than 40 works in the form of published journal articles and edited book chapters in addition to consultancy reports and tens of map and plan drawings. And this is quite apart from the number of masters’ dissertations and doctoral theses he has supervised. The University of Dar es Salaam, Davis’ alma mater, does wish him all the best in his current role as a scholar on a political-governance field tour. The University also urges him to use his current ‘open-air lab’ experiences as a rich resource and treasure for lots of additions to his personal fund of geographical knowledge, skills and tools for social engineering.