He is a trained engineer and business development specialist. He has a Doctorate Degree in chemical engineering from Columbia University in New York and a Master’s Degree in enterprise development from the Judge Business School at the University of Cambridge, England.

He was a Senior Visiting Lecturer at the Johnson Graduate School of Management at Cornell University and the G.W.C. Whiting School of Engineering at Johns Hopkins University, teaching product design and business development.  He has led the training and upskilling of hundreds of entrepreneurs in several countries in product development, quality and productivity improvement, and process optimization. Prior to that he was an Adjunct Associate Professor of Applied Mathematics at the University of Delaware where he received several grant awards (including an NSF grant) in support of his work in asymptotic analysis of polymeric behavior in viscometric flow fields. At the University of Delaware he successfully co-advised several doctoral students as part of his long-standing commitment to fostering industry-academia collaboration in scientific research.  


Previously, he worked in the Central Research & Development Division of the DuPont Company in Wilmington, Delaware. In that position, he led a number of projects focused on business process improvement, and new venture development. These included development of new fibers for ‘smart apparel’ applications; instruments for rheological characterization of polymeric flows; and thin film sensors for commercial application, amongst others.


Dr. Nwankwo is a Certified Six Sigma Black Belt with business process improvement experience in sectors ranging from trade development and manufacturing process development & management, to energy conservation and health care & wellness delivery. He has expertise in process modeling, simulation and optimization, having worked at the cutting edge of process simulation software development. He was a pioneer in the development of enterprise modeling systems, aimed at providing integrated optimization capability for large scale manufacturing & distributed logistics operations. Those applications are in wide use today.


His professional experience spans several continents and sectors focusing on the development of new businesses in emerging markets. He leads a team of specialists who support businesses seeking to deploy technologies or expand existing operations, develop new market opportunities, or improve productivity. He is the Chairman of Aquada Development Corporation, Ltd., a manufacturing consortium with operations in Africa, and President of Vertical Optimization, LLC, a  DC-area business development firm.


He has led the development of a variety of ventures across several sectors. These include design, development and operation of various agro-processing facilities, plastics manufacturing; bio-based fuels and materials; water treatment and bottling; power generation from municipal waste streams; alternative materials for affordable housing construction; actives for next-generation insect-repellents; diagnostic devices for infectious disease screening; facilities for production of bio-based fuels, amongst others. He has assisted startups and going concerns in over a dozen countries on four continents. His clients range from micro-enterprises to Fortune 500 companies.


Dr. Nwankwo has dozens of publications and major presentations to his credit, in areas ranging from wave propagation in complex fluids to management of community-based infrastructure and trade development.  He serves on several boards and is a frequent speaker at many international conferences and forums. He resides in the Washington, DC area, with his family, and oversees all aspects of the affairs of IDMANN Institute.