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All our upcoming and previous events are listed below
 
 
 
 
 
"The ANC and Social Security: The Good, the Bad and the Unacknowledged"
Event Date: Monday 5 September 2016
 
Colin will present on the topic of his recent paper which assessed one element of the ANC’s policies and practices since 1994: its programmes of social welfare. The ANC has carried out a remarkable expansion of welfare provision. By 2016, pensions and grants reached almost 18 million people, or one in three South Africans. Welfare cash transfers have arguably been the most effective mechanism of redistribution used by the ANC. The paper discusses the evolution and architecture of the social security provisions; the technology that delivers it; how it is viewed and understood by senior ANC politicians; and its shortcomings. It concludes with locating the topic within the ‘politics and economics of redistribution’ as outlined so fruitfully by James Ferguson. Colin Bundy is an historian, who has retired after a career as an academic and university administrator. He served as Vice-Chancellor of the University of the Witwatersrand, Principal of the School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London, and Principal of Green Templeton College, Oxford.  As a scholar he was best known for his Rise and Fall of a South African Peasantry; he was co-author (with William Beinart) of Hidden Struggles in Rural South Africa. Since 2012 he has published four books in the Jacana Pocket series: Govan Mbeki (2012), Short-changed? South Africa since apartheid (2014), Nelson Mandela (2015) and Poverty in South Africa: Past and Present. He has published over 50 articles and chapters on South African history and politics.  

Date:

Monday, 5 September 2016

Time:

13h00 - 14h00 (lunch to be served from 12h30)

Venue:

School of Economics Seminar Room, New Economics Building, Middle Campus,
University of Cape Town

 
 
 
 
 
'QS World University Rankings'
Event Date: Wednesday 31 August 2016
 
In this seminar, Dianne Bond (UCT’s Research Office) will present the Quacquarelli Symonds' (QS) Rankings results with the focus on the QS Subject Rankings in which UCT was placed in the Top 10. UCT’s publication titles and authors contributing to this field will be identified using the SciVal Research Management tool; benchmarking of publication and citation metrics against “competitor” institutions will also be shown. Dianne obtained a doctoral degree in Chemistry at UCT in 1986.  She lectured in the Chemistry Department until 1990 when she left to devote her time to raising a family. She joined the Research Office in 2004 to develop the new SET stream of the Emerging Researcher Programme (ERP).
She then lectured Chemistry at the Cape Peninsula University of Technology for a short period but returned to the Research Office to manage and implement the newly acquired Research Performance Management and Funding Opportunities databases. Her next role was as manager of the Information Management Cluster which included overseeing the Publication Count and the NRF Ratings projects. Dianne recently took up a new position as Senior Data Analyst in the newly created Research Internationalisation and Visibility Cluster in the Research Office.

Date:

Wednesday, 31 August 2016

Time:

13h00 - 14h00 (lunch to be served from 12h30)

Venue:

School of Economics Seminar Room, New Economics Building, Middle Campus,
University of Cape Town

 
 
 
 
 

 

Equality as a Development Strategy
Event date: Monday 29 August 2016

The economies in Scandinavia have for long periods had high work effort, small wage differentials, high productivity, and a generous welfare state. This seminar will explore the economic and political equilibrium in these economies and how they combine models of collective wage bargaining, creative job destruction, and welfare spending. Professor Karl-Ove Moene will give an overview of the wage bargaining systems and how they fuel investments, enhance average productivity and increase the mean wage by allocating more of the work force to most modern activities. Karl will also show how the political support for welfare spending is fueled by both a higher mean wage and a lower wage dispersion.

Karl-Ove Moene is a Norwegian economist and professor in the Department of Economics at the University of Oslo.

Date:

Monday, 29 August 2016

Time:

13h00 - 14h00 (lunch to be served from 12h30)

Venue:

School of Economics Seminar Room, New Economics Building, Middle Campus,
University of Cape Town

 

 
 
 
 

 

Equal Society Book Launch
Event Date: Thursday 11 August 2016

The Poverty & Inequality Initiative contributed towards the production of The Equal Society as a paperback edition and will host the book launch on August 11, 2016.
 
Prof. Crain Soudien, CEO of the Human Sciences Research Council (HSRC) will introduce the book and its central themes, and the book’s editor, Dr George Hull, will give an overview of the chapters and the topics they cover. 
 
The Equal Society showcases various contributors offering original approaches to themes prominent in current social and political philosophy, including relational equality, epistemic injustice, the capabilities approach, African ethics, gender equality and the philosophy of race. The book’s editor, Dr. George Hull, is a lecturer in philosophy at the University of Cape Town. 
The Equal Society: Essays on Equality in Theory and Practice was originally published outside southern Africa by Lexington Books in 2015. This paperback version is now available for R 399.00 from juta.co.za or your nearest academic bookstore. 

Date:

Thursday, 11 August 2016

Time:

13h00 - 14h00 (lunch to be served from 12h30)

Venue:

Lecture Theatre 1, New Economics Building, Middle Campus,
University of Cape Town

 

 
 
 
 
 
Does crime deter South Africans from self-employment?
Event Date: Wednesday 20 July 2016
 
Michael Grimm is Professor of Development Economics at the University of Passau, Germany. He is an IZA Research Fellow and affiliated with the DIW in Berlin and the Erasmus University Rotterdam. He holds an MSc from the Goethe University, Frankfurt as well as an MA and a PhD from Sciences Po in Paris. He has recently led a World Bank-funded research project on informal entrepreneurship in Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) and has advised the GIZ, the KfW, the ILO, among others, on related issues. He has published in leading field journals such as the Journal of Development Economics, Health Economics and Demography. Katharina Grabrucker is a PhD candidate at the University of Passau. She holds a Masters in International Economics and Economic Policy from Goethe University, Frankfurt and a Bachelor in Governance and Public Policy from the University of Passau. While studying she has spent two semesters abroad in Warsaw, Poland as well as in Bangkok, Thailand. Her research interests are micro- and small enterprises as well as social businesses in developing countries, inclusive growth and poverty reduction. Previously she worked as a consultant for the Boston Consulting Group in Dusseldorf, focusing on strategy, sales and organization projects for companies in the industrial goods sector. In this seminar Michael and Katharina will analyze the impact of crime on self-employment in South Africa. They will use official crime statistics and match it with micro level data from the national census, a community survey and a survey on employers and self-employed. Applying a fixed-effects and an instrumental variable approach, they first examine the relationship between crime and self-employment and, second, the impact of crime on business performance indicators, such as sales, profits and investment. In contrast to the existing literature, which focuses on perceived crime rather than actual crime rates, they do not find robust and economically significant evidence that high crime rates have a negative impact on self-employment in South Africa. Although the impact of robbery and burglary on self-employment is statistically significant and negative, it is economically small. Moreover, their results suggest a positive relationship between robbery and burglary, and sales of a business.

Date:

Wednesday, 20 July 2016

Time:

13h00 - 14h00 (lunch to be served from 12h30)

Venue:

School of Economics Seminar Room, New Economics Building, Middle Campus,
University of Cape Town

 
 
 
 
 
Humanitarian Impunity, Criminal Justice and Invisible Children: Social Consequences of the War with the Lord’s Resistance Army
Event Date: Wednesday 6 July 2016
 
Humanitarians rely on rules and norms – from laws or principles, to religious and biomedical values, to best practice and ethical guidelines. The rules and norms create apparently coherent and predictable spaces. For humanitarians in the field, they establish locations in which the horrors they sometimes witness can be observed from a distance, or even set aside. The latter tendency is reinforced by life in compounds and aid towns in which a strange semblance of life at home is replicated. Humanitarians always need to balance empathy and self-preservation. They need to institutionalise engagement and, in-effect, excuse disengagement. However, there are obvious dangers, notably cognitive dissonance and humanitarian impunity. Cognitive dissonance and humanitarian impunity in the war zone of Acholiland in central northern Uganda are the focus of this lecture. The region has been affected by conflict for decades, with more than 30,000 young people being abducted or joining the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA). Many of these people subsequently escaped or were captured by the Ugandan army; and they passed through reception centres on their way 'home'. The reception centres were managed with the support of international humanitarian agencies, but no-one knows what subsequently happened to most of those passing through them (including traumatised children). Many were left in internal displacement camps where conditions were appalling, and they had live with relatives who were aware they had spent time with the LRA, and had probably been required to kill or maim victims. They have been much more invisible than the so called ‘invisible children’ that have been the focus of media campaigns about the situation in the region. What has happened to these formerly abducted people is symptomatic of wider developments. There have been local consequences of the LRA war, and also ones that are of far reaching global significance, because it is here that the International Criminal Court focussed its first investigations, and it was the situation in this region that resulted in its first arrest warrants.  Where do humanitarians fit in to the upheavals that have occurred, and the attempts to impose accountability for terrible crimes? The lecture will draw on long-term anthropological fieldwork from periods before, during and after the war. In particular it will present findings on what has happened to people who spent time with the Lord’s Resistance Army, based on interviews with 234 people (who were selected by taking a 10% random sample of records at a reception centre in Gulu). Aspects of social integration and exclusion in the post war setting of northern Uganda will be highlighted. One problem that many encounter is cen, a kind of malevolent emanation from those that have experienced or perpetrated violence. It can make social healing a fraught process. Another issue is the relative insignificance of local reconciliation rituals that have been a prime focus of those advocating traditional justice. There are big discrepancies between the lived experiences of those who have been caught up in the war and the normative assumptions of those purportedly helping them. Meanwhile, most of the humanitarian agencies that were active during the war have withdrawn, and media interest has shifted elsewhere. The International Criminal Court is prosecuting one of the Lord’s Resistance Army commanders, but the process is largely being ignored, and the accountability of others (including aid agencies) for what was described by a senior UN official in 2003 as amongst the worst of all humanitarian crises, is simply forgotten.  Professor Tim Allen is Director of the Firoz Lalji Centre for Africa and Head of the Department of International Development at the London School of Economics and Political Science. He has carried out long-term field research several African counties, mostly in East Africa. His publications include the bestselling textbook, Poverty and Development (Oxford University Press 2000), as well as books and articles on ethnic conflict in Europe, media coverage of wars, links between culture and development issues, mass forced displacement, and global health. His latest books have been Trial Justice: The International Criminal Court and the Lord's Resistance Army (2006), and The Lord’s Resistance Army: Myth and Reality (2010). In recent years his research has focussed on justice and accountability in African war zones, and social aspects of Neglected Tropical Disease control. He has published extensively on the latter in collaboration with Dr Melissa Parker of the London School of Hygiene and Tropical medicine, focussing in particular on mass drug administration in endemic populations of East Africa. In addition to academic work, he has worked as a consultant with numerous international organisations, including UNDP, UNICEF, UNRISD, MSF, LWF, Save the Children, World Vision and DFID. He is also a broadcaster and has presented or contributed to numerous radio and television programmes, mostly for the BBC. He has been elected as a Fellow of the Academy of Social Sciences.

Date:

Wednesday, 6 July 2016

Time:

13h00 - 14h00 (lunch to be served from 12h30)

Venue:

School of Economics Seminar Room, New Economics Building, Middle Campus,
University of Cape Town

 
 
 
 
 
 
Deworming Delusions: Mass Treatment for African Parasites in a Biosocial Perspective
Event Date: Tuesday 5 July 2016
 
Recent debates about deworming school-aged children in East Africa have been described as ‘The Worm Wars’ on a World Bank website.The stakes are high. Deworming has become one of the top priorities in the fight against infectious diseases. Leading economists and epidemiologists have vigorously promoted the idea, claiming that it has the potential to end poverty, They cite historical examples from the USA, Japan and elsewhere, and give particular emphasis from data collected in Kenya since the end of the 1990s, and published in a key article in 2004. Staff at the World Health Organisation, the Gates Foundation and the World Bank (among other institutions) have endorsed the approach, and school-based treatments are a key component of large-scale mass drug administration. The current, integrated approach to mass drug administration has emerged as the largest global health programme that the world has ever seen. However, biosocial research in Uganda and Tanzania suggest that things are not as straightforward as has been claimed. Drawing on anthropological field research at sites spread across the region, and engaging with both biological and social evidence, this seminar shows that assertions about the effects of school-based deworming are over-optimistic. The results of the much-cited study on deworming Kenyan school children, which has been used to promote the intervention, are flawed, and a systematic review of randomised controlled trials demonstrates that deworming is unlikely to improve overall public health. Also, confusions arise by applying the term deworming to a variety of very different helminth infections and to different treatment regimes, while local level research in schools reveals that drug coverage usually falls below target levels. In most places where data exist, infection levels remain disappointingly high. Without indefinite free deworming, any declines in endemicity are likely to be reversed. Moreover, there are social problems arising from mass drug administration, which have generally been ignored. There is no doubt that curative therapy for children infected with debilitating parasitic infections is appropriate, but overly positive evaluations of indiscriminate deworming are counter-productive. In presenting the material Prof. Allen will also reflect on the the challenges and opportunities associated with doing critically-engaged ethnographic fieldwork on such an important and widely promoted intervention. He will pose several controversial questions about the nature of evidence, about how evidence relates to policy choices, about the ways in which large grants shape the evidence that is collected and the way it is presented, and about why it is possible to treat African children in schools without their parents’ permission (something that is unlikely to be considered ethical in other parts of the world). Professor Tim Allen is Director of the Firoz Lalji Centre for Africa and Head of the Department of International Development at the London School of Economics and Political Science. He has carried out long-term field research several African counties, mostly in East Africa. His publications include the bestselling textbook, Poverty and Development (Oxford University Press 2000), as well as books and articles on ethnic conflict in Europe, media coverage of wars, links between culture and development issues, mass forced displacement, and global health. His latest books have been Trial Justice: The International Criminal Court and the Lord's Resistance Army (2006), and The Lord’s Resistance Army: Myth and Reality (2010). In recent years his research has focussed on justice and accountability in African war zones, and social aspects of Neglected Tropical Disease control. He has published extensively on the latter in collaboration with Dr Melissa Parker of the London School of Hygiene and Tropical medicine, focussing in particular on mass drug administration in endemic populations of East Africa. In addition to academic work, he has worked as a consultant with numerous international organisations, including UNDP, UNICEF, UNRISD, MSF, LWF, Save the Children, World Vision and DFID. He is also a broadcaster and has presented or contributed to numerous radio and television programmes, mostly for the BBC. He has been elected as a Fellow of the Academy of Social Sciences.

Date:

Tuesday, 5 July 2016

Time:

18h15 - 19h45 (light dinner served from 17h45)     

Venue:

Lecture Theatre 1A, Neville Alexander Building*, University Avenue South, Upper Campus, UCT

 
 
 
 

 

Lunch Seminar by Dr Ariane De Lannoy on Youth Development
Event Date: Tuesday 14 June 2016

 Dear Researchers and Colleagues

On the 16th June we remember the power of the younger generation. We celebrate the courageous students who defended their right to equal education, and we commemorate those who lost their lives in the struggle. In the week of this important day in our country, we will be reflecting on current efforts directed at developing young people. The Bertha Centre’s Education Innovation Initiative has invited UCT's Poverty and Inequality Initiative's Dr Ariane De Lannoy, a sociologist and senior researcher, to explore the idea that our country currently lacks a thorough analysis of youth-specific poverty data – including data that shows the extent to which poverty varies from one small, local area to another, or that can track possible progress over time. This kind of information is key to the development of these efforts. 

This lunch-time seminar will explore ways in which the research community, and other stakeholders invested in youth empowerment, can contribute to the development of effective policies and interventions.

About the researcher: Dr Ariane De Lannoy is a sociologist and senior researcher, coordinating the work programme on youth within the Poverty and Inequality Initiative. Ariane holds Masters degrees in languages and international politics from the Universities of Ghent and Antwerp (Belgium) and a PhD in Sociology from the University of Cape Town (South Africa). Her research focuses on youth in rapidly changing urban environments. She is especially interested in youth transitions and decision-making in the complex context of post-apartheid South Africa. In 2015, De Lannoy was the lead editor of the multidisciplinary Child Gauge, which focused on Youth and the Intergenerational Transmission of Poverty.

Date:

Tuesday, 14 June 2016

Time:

13h00 - 14h00 

Venue:

MTN Solution Space, Learning Lab UCT Graduate School of Business Cape Town 

 
 
 
 
 
Research and Policy Engagement on Youth Development PII/SALDRU
Event Date: 1 June 2016
 
Twenty-two years after South Africa’s transition to democracy, the situation for the majority of young people in the country remains precarious. Youth are disproportionately affected by poverty, unemployment and ill health. Racial and gender dynamics, along with spatial inequalities remain among the barriers to upward social mobility. Furthermore, large proportions of young people experience multiple and inter-related forms of deprivation simultaneously, including low levels of education, poor health and limited access to housing, basic services and economic opportunities. While post-apartheid governments have introduced various Youth Policies, agencies and “desks” across departments and local, provincial and national levels of governance, the interventions have clearly not managed to level the playing fields for South Africa’s youth. This seminar explores ways in which the research community can contribute to the development of effective policies and interventions aimed at youth development.  An argument will be made that the country currently lacks a thorough analysis of youth-specific poverty data – including data that shows the extent to which poverty varies from one small, local area to another, or that can track possible progress over time. This kind of information is key to development efforts directed at young people. The seminar will further highlight the lack of a consolidated evidence-base on best practices in the field of youth development that could potentially be scaled up.  Ariane De Lannoy is a sociologist and senior researcher, coordinating the work programme on Youth within the Poverty and Inequality Initiative. Ariane holds Masters degrees in languages and international politics from the Universities of Ghent and Antwerp (Belgium) and a PhD in Sociology from the University of Cape Town (South Africa). Her research focuses on youth in rapidly changing urban environments, using Mixed Method and a Qualitative approaches. She is especially interested in youth transitions and decision-making in the complex context of post-apartheid South Africa. In collaboration with Katherine S. Newman, current Provost at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst (USA) she worked on After Freedom: The Rise of the Post-Apartheid Generation in Democratic South Africa, an ethnographic study investigating the social experience and political expectations of men and women in their late twenties. In 2015, De Lannoy was the lead editor of the multidisciplinary Child Gauge, which focused on Youth and the Intergenerational Transmission of Poverty.

Date:

Wednesday, 1 June 2016

Time:

12h30 - 14h00 (lunch to be served from 12h30 - 13h00)

Venue:

School of Economics Seminar Room, New Economics Building, Middle Campus,
University of Cape Town

 
 
Regulation of the Land Holdings Bill
Event date: Tuesday, 17 November 2015
 
Professor Michael Lipton is an eminent development economist, well known for his work on poverty and rural development (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Michael_Lipton). Periodically since 1994, he has worked on and in South Africa. In response to an invitation from the Department of Rural Development and Land Reform, he has started to work on the proposed Regulation of Land Holdings Bill in the light of international experience of land reform, including the issue of ceilings and registration. Seminar participants may be interested in Professor Lipton’s book, Land Reform in Developing Countries:property rights and property wrongs (Routledge, 2009; also in paperback, e-book, and Googlebooks). There are extended sections on both ceilings and registration – these provide relevant background, comparative and analytic material not easily accessible elsewhere.
 
This is an area in which members of the PII and others in the UCT community have been working actively. Much of our work has been as part of national research projects, for example with our colleagues from PLAAS at UWC.

Professor Lipton will be in Cape Town on Tuesday 17 November 2015 and will lead an "engagement seminar" on the Bill with as many of us that as can make it.

Date:

Tuesday, 17 November 2015

Time:

12h30 - 14h00 (lunch to be served from 12h30 - 13h00)

Venue:

School of Economics Seminar Room, New Economics Building, Middle Campus,
University of Cape Town

'Artisans of peace overcoming poverty' A conversation with the author, Diana Skelton
Event date: Wednesday, 7 October 2015

The ATD Fourth World Movement was started in a camp for homeless families outside of Paris in 1956. A Catholic priest, Father Joseph Wresinki became chaplain to the 250 families living there. Determined to fight the poverty which he experienced through these families, he started a community development project with them.

From the outset, the ATD Fourth World Movement has targeted three priorities:

  • Learning from the most disadvantaged families;
  • Understanding how they became trapped in persistent poverty; and
  • Planning and developing projects with them.

The movement strives to honor the dignity of these families and their refusal to submit to poverty. Included in this is the commitment to record all traces of struggles and hopes of poor people. It seeks to work with the recovery of memory of marginalised people across the world, and to reflect the stories of whole neighbourhoods which were destroyed to make way for ‘improved conditions of life’. The synergy with the work of District Six Museum is immediately apparent, and the two organisations have found several points of intersection both in content and methods of working.

Diana Skelton is the International Director of the ATD Fourth World Movement, and one of the authors of ‘Artisans of Peace overcoming Poverty’. On 7 October, the Poverty and Inequality Initiative will host a conversation with Diana, and we invite you to join this conversation.

Date:

Wednesday, 7 October 2015

Time:

12h30 - 14h00 (lunch to be served from 12h30 - 13h00)

Venue:

School of Economics Seminar Room, New Economics Building, Middle Campus,
University of Cape Town

 
Economist Thomas Piketty to speak at UCT
Event date: 30 September 2015

Dear colleagues and students

It is my pleasure to announce to you that French economist, Professor Thomas Piketty, will deliver a talk and then engage in a dialogue at Jameson Hall at the University of Cape Town on Wednesday, 30 September 2015, at 16h00.

The dialogue is part of The Mandela Initiative: Dialogue and action to overcome poverty and inequality, and will precede the Nelson Mandela Memorial Lecture, which Professor Piketty will deliver in Johannesburg on 3 October 2015.

Professor Piketty, who teaches economics at the Paris School of Economics, is famous for his work on inequality. His seminal book, Capital in the Twenty-First Century, has sold over 1.5 million copies in French, English, German, Chinese and Spanish. For this work he collected and analysed tax records from Britain, the United States and France to track back income and wealth over the last century.

This dialogue is particularly important for all of us, as inequality continues to increase. Professor Piketty’s argument is that inequality rises when the rate of return to capital outstrips the rate of growth. This has been the case in parts of the developed world like the United States, where 1% own about one-third of all the wealth in the country, and in Europe, where about one-quarter own the same proportion. This phenomenon has extended to developing countries such as South Africa, where the gap between the haves and the have-nots continues to widen.

This talk is entitled Income, Wealth and Persistent Inequality, is presented in partnership with the Nelson Mandela Foundation and the Cape Peninsula University of Technology, University of Stellenbosch and the University of Western Cape.

Sincerely

Dr Max Price
Vice-Chancellor

Preparing professionals to practise in contexts of poverty and inequality: Addressing language and diversity in pre-service teacher education in the School of Education
Event date: Wednesday, 26 August 2015

Dear Colleagues and Students You are cordially invited to the second seminar in the “Preparing Professionals to Practice in Contexts of Poverty and Inequality” curriculum seminar series for 2015, hosted by the UCT Poverty and Inequality Initiative (PII).

The PII’s Curriculum Seminars aim to facilitate meaningful discussion and debate on how departments and programmes at UCT engage with matters relating to poverty and inequality in South Africa through their curricula. In 2014, the seminars reflected on blind-spots within our undergraduate curricula, and in 2015 the PII would like to take this further by focusing on ways which we are preparing the next generation of professionals.

Our upcoming seminar will profile innovative curriculum practices within the Postgraduate Certificate in Education (PGCE) that provides pre-service teacher training and education. The redesign of the PGCE involved a number of people within the School of Education, and A/Prof Carolyn McKinney and A/Prof Rochelle Kapp will be presenting specifically on how language and diversity have been addressed within the redesign of the PGCE curriculum.

Presenters: A/Prof Carolyn McKinney and A/Prof Rochelle Kapp

Date: Wednesday, 26 August 2015

Time: 13h00 - 14h00 (light lunch at 12h30)

Venue: SoE Seminar Room, Level 4, New School of Economics Building, Middle Campus

RSVP: For catering purposes, please RSVP to Mpho Phoba (Mpho.Phoba@uct.ac.za) by 20 August 2015​

 

 

 

The OECD's South Africa Country Report
Event date: Monday, 20 July 2015 

The OECD has just released a country report on South Africa. Andreas Woergoetter, the Head of Division at the OECD Economics Department, and his team will join us to present and discuss the report.

Date:

Monday, 20 July

Time:

12h30 – 14h00 (with lunch served at 12h30)

Venue:

School of Economics Seminar Room, Level 4, New Economics Building, Middle Campus, UCT

The table of contents is list below:

Assessment and recommendations....................................................................................................................13
Social progress over the past 20 years has been impressive .........................................................................14
A stronger recovery was held back by strikes and power cuts .........................................................................17
Macroeconomic policies are stabilising inflation and public debt....................................................................23
Promoting inclusive growth by improving the labour market ............................................................................26
More effective infrastructure and business regulation to lay the foundations for higher growth ...............36
How can the tax system help to meet revenue-raising challenges? ..............................................................43
Bibliography................................................................................................................................................................48
ANNEX Progress in main structural reforms........................................................................................................52

Thematic chapters

Chapter 1. More effective infrastructure and business regulation .............................................................60
Investments in infrastructure are being ramped up............................................................................................61
The lack of infrastructure investment is most noticeable in the electricity sector.........................................62
Transport infrastructure investments have not kept pace with economic developments...........................65
Telecommunications could better support growth.............................................................................................73
Better business regulation to boost growth.........................................................................................................74
Housing and spatial planning have to cope with ongoing urbanisation........................................................85
Notes...........................................................................................................................................................................88
Bibliography................................................................................................................................................................90

Chapter 2.How can the tax system meet revenue raising challenges?....................................................96
The existing tax system performs relatively well ................................................................................................97
The income tax system relies on narrow tax bases .........................................................................................100
Indirect taxation has a broad base........................................................................................................................112
Developing property taxation into a sustainable revenue source...................................................................121
Getting taxation of natural resources “right” is a challenge ............................................................................123
Notes..........................................................................................................................................................................127
Bibliography..............................................................................................................................................................128

This seminar is co-hosted by UCT’s Poverty and Inequality Initiative in collaboration with
REDI3x3, UCT’s School of Economics and
the Graduate School of Development, Policy and Practice.


Preparing professionals to practice in contexts of poverty and inequality: The case of health and rehabilitation professionals
Event date: Wednesday, 22 April 2015

Dear Colleagues and Students

You are cordially invited to the launch of the 2015 Curriculum Seminar series “Preparing Professionals to Practice in Contexts of Poverty and Inequality”, hosted by the UCT Poverty and Inequality Initiative.

The Diagnostic Report prepared by the National Planning Commission found that insufficient progress has been made in reducing inequality, infrastructure is poorly located, under-maintained and insufficient to foster higher growth, there is a widespread disease burden, public services are uneven and often of poor quality, and South Africa remains a divided society (NPC, 2011). As an in​stitution we want to take stock of whether we are producing professionals who are equipped to deal with the challenges associated with the South African context of high levels of poverty and inequality.

The Poverty and Inequality Initiative’s Curriculum Seminars aim to facilitate meaningful discussion and debate on how departments and programmes at UCT engage with matters relating to poverty and inequality in South Africa through their curricula. In 2014, the seminars reflected on blind-spots within our undergraduate curricula, and in 2015 the PII would like to take this further by focusing on ways which we are preparing the next generation of professionals.

The launch will profile innovative curriculum transformation in the Allied Health and Rehabilitation Sciences that placed the issue of social justice at the center of its curriculum review.

Presenters:

A/Prof Harsha Kathard, A/Prof Roshan Galvaan, and A/Prof Elelwani Ramugondo

Date:

Wednesday, 22 April 2015

Time:

13h00 - 14h00 (light lunch at 12h30)

Venue:

SoE Seminar Room, Level 4, New School of Economics, Middle Campus

RSVP:

For catering purposes, please RSVP to Janine Carlse (Janine.carlse@uct.ac.za) by 17 April 2015

Cooperation, trust and economic development: Experimental evidence on China
Event date: Monday, 23 February 2015

Many previous empirical studies have suggested that cooperation and trust affect economic growth. However, the precise relationship between trust and cooperation (i.e. whether trust leads to cooperation or cooperation leads to trust) remains unclear and it is not known how the level of economic development affects the level of cooperation and trust.

In this seminar, Prof Junyi Shen will speak to two recent experimental studies carried out in four regions of China. In the first study, a series of lab and artefactual field experiments were conducted to investigate the relationship between trust/trustworthiness and cooperation. The groups selected for the study were middle school and undergraduate university students and community residents. The experiments comprised two public goods games, a gambling game and a trust game. The issue on whether General Social Survey (GSS) questions can predict trusting/trustworthy behaviour were also investigated. In the second study, issues on how the level of economic development affected cooperative and trusting behaviors were investigated. The experiments were carried out applying the same experimental designs as in the first study.

Prof Shen obtained his PhD from the Osaka School of International Public Policy, Osaka University, Japan. March 2006. His dissertation was on “The Role of Environmental Consciousness in Transport Modal Choice and Economic Growth”. Prof Shen is currently a Professor, at the Research Institute for Economics & Business Administration, Kobe University, Japan.

Date:

Monday, 23 February 2015

Time:

12h30 - 14h00 (lunch served from 12h30 - 13h00)

Venue:

Seminar Room, Level 4, New Economics Building, Middle Campus

RSVP:

For catering purposes, please RSVP to Emily Frame (emily.frame@uct.ac.za)

Blind-spots in mainstream undergraduate teaching: Are economics graduates adequately prepared to engage with the challenges associated with poverty and inequality?

Event Date: Wednesday, 8 October 2015

The Poverty and Inequality Initiative (PII) invites you to attend our upcoming "Blind-spots in Mainstream Undergraduate Teaching: Are we adequately preparing graduates in Economics to deal with the challenges associated with poverty and inequality" lunch-time seminar, which forms part of the Curriculum, Poverty and Inequality Seminar Series.

Reflections on whether our curricula equip graduates to engage with challenges related to poverty and inequality, and on how universities should be contributing to building a new social order premised on different conceptions of human progress, are pertinent in the current South African context. The Curriculum, Poverty and Inequality Seminar Series thus aims to facilitate meaningful discussion and debate on how academics at UCT engage with matters relating to Poverty and Inequality in South Africa through their curricula. 

Dr Iraj Abedian is the founder and CEO of Pan-African Capital Holdings. He obtained his BA Honours and MA in Economics from University of Cape Town (UCT) and received his PhD in Economics from Simon Fraser University in Canada. He has served as a consultant on economic policy issues to public and private sector organisations in South Africa, as well as internationally. His involvement in the development of South Africa includes: The Transformation of the Development Bank of Southern Africa; The RDP White Paper; Growth, Employment and Redistribution, Medium Term Expenditure Framework; the Presidential Review Commission; membership of the President's Economic Advisory Panel and Economic Advisor to Minister of Mineral Resources (South African Government). Professor Abedian was awarded, in 2003, the title of Top Economist of the Year by the Association of Black Securities and Investment Professionals. (http://mba.nmmu.ac.za/node/681)

Ismail Lagardien is a South African political economist whose main interests are in global capitalism, and the reproduction of inequality, dominance, abuse of dominance, and all forms of violence and injustice in the global political economy. He was educated at the London School of Economics, and holds a doctorate in International Political Economy from the University of Wales, Aberystwyth. Lagardien has worked as a journalist, as a strategist and speechwriter for the Chief Economist of the World Bank, and a professor of International Political Economy and International Relations at Elon University in North Carolina, USA.

Panellists:

Dr Iraj Abedian, and Ismail Lagardien

Chair:

Prof Anthony Black (School of Economics)

Date:

Wednesday, 8 October 2014

Time:

13h00 - 14h00, with lunch from 12h30 - 13h00

Venue:

New School of Economics Seminar Room (Middle Campus)

RSVP:

For catering purposes, please RSVP to Emily Frame (emily.frame@uct.ac.za)

A conversation on property rights, political choice and development
Event date: 11 September 2014
A conversation with Professor David Kennedy of the Harvard Law School, Dr Aninka Claassens of the Rural Women's Action Research Programme, and Professor Alan Hirsch of the Graduate School of Development Policy and Practice on property rights, political choice and development in the South African context. Co-hosted by the PII and the Centre for Law & Society. 11 September 2014, 12h00–14h00,School of Economics Seminar Room, Level 4, New Economics Building, Middle Campus, UCT
‘Youth in South Africa: Uncertain Transitions in a Context of Deprivation – A PII collloquium
Event date: 29, 30 August 2014

In August 2014, the PII hosted a colloquium to address the key challenges facing young people in South Africa, including youth unemployment and access to the labour market, entrepreneurship and skills development, youth transitions and issues around 'identity'.  The Colloquium was a multi-disciplinary engagement with reflections from academics and practitioners alike, to deepen our understanding and analysis of young people’s experiences of life in deprivation, and of their halted or uneven transitions into adulthood.

A key aim was to create an opportunity for participants to reflect on the best ways for policy engagement, actions and programmes to reduce the levels of precariousness and un(der)employment among South Africa’s youth. By bringing together a range of stakeholders from academia, civil society, politics and business, the PII also aimed to contribute to the identification of policies, actions and programmes - and key areas of intervention - that can help reduce the levels of precariousness and un(der)employment among South Africa’s youth.

Emerging from the lessons learned and key issues identified at this first colloquium, the PII now continues to foster and facilitate reflective and action-oriented knowledge exchange between researchers, policy-makers and practitioners, through the format of smaller 'working groups' around particular themes. Each of these working groups will collaboratively set an agenda for further work, which ultimately aims to contribute to change in the lives of young South Africans.

Final Programme Presentations Audio

Dealing with disadvantage - a PII public seminar and panel discussion
Event date: 18 August 2014, 17h00 - 19h00
A PII public seminar led by Professor Jonathan Wolff, followed by a panel discussion with Dr Mamphela Ramphele and Nozizwe Madlala-Routledge. LT2 Kramer Building, Middle Campus, University of Cape Town
Blind-spots in mainstream undergraduate teaching: Philosophy, Ethics and Epidemiology – Curriculum, Poverty and Inequality Seminar Series
Event date: 5 August 2014, 12h00 - 14h00
This series aims to facilitate meaningful discussion and debate on how academics at UCT engage with matters relating to Poverty and Inequality in South Africa through their curricula. Panelists: George Hull (Philosophy), Buhle Zuma (Psychology) and Anwar Mall (General Surgery). School of Economics Seminar Room, Level 4, New Economics Building, Middle Campus, University of Cape Town
Social Justice, Law and Development – PII seminar
Event date: 29 May 2014, 12h00 - 14h00
A PII colloquium for researchers, policy makers, community practitioners and donors to engage on key issues facing youth in South Africa. Graduate School of Business

 
Blind-spots in mainstream undergraduate teaching: Geographical Sciences, Economics and Engineering – Curriculum, Poverty and Inequality Seminar Series
Event date: 21 May 2014, 12h00 - 14h00
This series aims to facilitate meaningful discussion and debate on how academics at UCT engage with matters relating to Poverty and Inequality in South Africa through their curricula. Panellists: Sue Parnell (Environmental and Geographical Sciences), Martine Visser (School of Economics) and Harro von Blottnitz (Chemical Engineering). Room 3A, Humanities Bldg, Upper Campus, UCT
Blind-spots in mainstream undergraduate teaching: Economics and Sociology’ – Curriculum, Poverty and Inequality Seminar Series
Event date: 30 April 2014, 12h00 - 14h00
This series aims to facilitate meaningful discussion and debate on how academics at UCT engage with matters relating to Poverty and Inequality in South Africa through their curricula. Panellists: Ari Sitas (Sociology), Edwin Muchapondwa (School of Economics) and Nicoli Nattrass (School of Economics and CSSR). School of Economics Seminar Room, Level 4, New Economics Building, Middle Campus, University of Cape Town.
Launch of Poverty and Inequality Initiative seminar programme
Event date: 2 April 2014, 12h00 - 14h00
An introduction to the Poverty and Inequality Initiative and seminar programme, co-hosted by the PII and SALDRU. Speaker: Pro Vice Chancellor for Poverty and Inequality Professor Murray Leibbrandt. School of Economics Seminar Room, Level 4, New Economics Building, Middle Campus, University of Cape Town
Launch of the ‘Curriculum, Poverty and Inequality Series’
Event date: 25 March 2014, 14h00 - 15h30
Professor Melanie Walker of the University of the Free State will speak on the role of universities in promoting equity and social justice by developing professionals with a social conscience at the launch of the ‘Curriculum, Poverty and Inequality’ Series. The series aims to facilitate meaningful discussion and critical debate about how academics at UCT engage with issues of poverty and inequality through their curricula. Mafeje Meeting Room, Bremner Building, UCT
‘Building a Cohesive Society in South Africa’
Event date: 18/19 March 2014
A workshop co-hosted by the PII, the Graduate School of Development Policy and Practice and Kobe University. School of Economics Boardroom, Level 4, New Economics Building, Middle Campus, University of Cape Town