Democracy & development

Progressive partnership in pursuit of transformation in Africa and beyond

Prominent figures in the University of the Western Cape’s academic and administrative leadership, led by the Rector, Professor Tyrone Pretorius, gathered with former President Kgalema Motlanthe, Director of the Institute for African Alternative’s board, and board members Acting IFAA Director Emeritus Professor Ari Sitas and Cosatu Deputy Parliamentary Officer Tony Ehrenreich.

The event was the launch of the partnership between IFAA and the university’s Institute for Social Development, a collaboration that has been more than a year in the making.

Describing this as “an extraordinary partnership between two venerable institutions,” Professor Pretorius said: “This isn’t just a collaboration; it’s a convergence of intellectual powerhouses dedicated to spearheading social and economic development and transformation.”

Speaking at the launch at UWC’s School of Public Health on 15 November 2023, which was followed by a celebratory luncheon, he said, “the genesis of this partnership lies in an unwavering commitment to democracy, ethics and human rights. Over the past three years, UWC’s ISD and the IFAA have forged an indomitable alliance to tackle our society’s most pressing issues.”

The two institutes signed a memorandum of understanding earlier this year to form a strategic partnership around social and economic development and transformation in Africa, focused on joint initiatives in research, training and communication.

Cooperation began in 2021 around IFAA’s first annual Ben Turok Memorial Lecture. A successful partnership has subsequently been formed in the joint publication of IFAA’s flagship journal New Agenda: South African Journal of Social and Economic Policy, with the release of the first jointly published issue, issue 90, in September 2023.

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