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Zaakhir Asmal

Senior Researcher

Expertise: Labour Economics, Development Economics, Competition and Regulatory Economics, Poverty and Inequality, Education and Skills Development

Zaakhir holds a Master of Economic Science degree (with Distinction) from the University of the Witwatersrand. Prior to joining the DPRU in May 2016, Zaakhir was a Researcher for the Human Sciences Research Council’s Economic Performance and Development programme. Before that, he was employed as an Analyst in the Competition and Regulatory Economics practice of the economics consulting firm Genesis Analytics.  During his time at the University of the Witwatersrand, Zaakhir was also a tutor for a number of courses as well as Head Tutor for the courses Economics I and Economics II. His research interests include Labour Economics, Development Economics, Competition and Regulatory Economics, Poverty and Inequality & Education and Skills Development.

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Latest Research projects and reports:

  1. Allen, C., Asmal, Z., Bhorat, H., Hill, R., Oosthuizen, M., Monnakgotla, J. and Rooney, C. 2021.  Employment creation potential, labor skills requirements, and skill gaps for young people: A South African case study 
  2. Asmal, Z., Bhorat, H., Culligan, S., Hofmeyr, H., Monnakgotla, J., Oosthuizen, M. and Rooney, C. 2020. Skills Supply and Demand in South Africa 2020. The Labour Market Intelligence Research Programme. 
  3. Bhorat, H, Asmal, Z. and Allen, C. 2020. Growth and structural change: Implications for developing countries. Friedrich Ebert Stiftung (FES) New York Study. 
  4. Bhorat, H., Allen, C., Asmal, Z., Hill, R. and Rooney, C. 2020. Employment creation potential, labor skills requirements, and skill gaps for young people: A methodological framework
  5. Asmal, Z., Bhorat, H. and Page, J. 2020. Exploring new sources of large-scale job creation: The potential role of Industries Without Smokestacks. Chapter 3 in Foresight Africa 2020. 

Blog posts available online:

  1. Rooney, C. and Asmal, Z. 2021. Solving South Africa’s unemployment: Could tourism, horticulture, agro-processing, or logistics hold the key? https://www.brookings.edu/blog/africa-in-focus/2021/02/11/solving-south-africas-unemployment-could-tourism-horticulture-agro-processing-or-logistics-hold-the-key/
  2. Rooney, C. and Asmal, Z. 2020. Job creation for youth in Africa: Skills needs and gaps for industries without smokestacks https://www.brookings.edu/blog/africa-in-focus/2020/03/04/job-creation-for-youth-in-africa-skills-needs-and-gaps-for-industries-without-smokestacks/