Google+ Hangout: Labour and Unemployment in South Africa: Towards a "Grand Bargain"

10 Mar 2016 - 11:30

The Development Policy Research Unit will host an hour long debate via Google+ Hangouts, as part of the World Bank research programme: the Network on Jobs for Development (NJD): 
Labour and Unemployment in South Africa: Towards a "Grand Bargain"
Date and time: Tuesday, 15th March 2016 at 14:00 SAST (08:00 EDT)

Click here to join live.

The problematic in South Africa is very clear: high unemployment, high inequality and low growth, combined with a lack of consensus on what to do to solve these issues. There is no shortage of, or proposals for, specific actual policies and interventions; and no shortage of detailed debate and discussion around each of them. But perhaps we should first investigate why there is such a lack of consensus. Is it in part to do with a fundamental disconnect between the fact that the key interventions will only work through over a 7-10-15 year time horizon, while the political need is to deliver high growth, low unemployment and low inequality over a 3-5-7 year time horizon?

Prof Ravi Kanbur’s basic argument is that it might be more fruitful to think in “grand bargain” terms, of a package of policies whose thrust is to balance alternative perspectives, whose differences cannot be resolved through technical debate, and to set the needs of short term political economy imperatives against the long time horizon needed for the working of policies and interventions to address deep structural legacies.

Click here to join live, or go to YouTube:

Professor Haroon Bhorat – Director at the DPRU (Moderator)
Haroon is Director of the Development Policy Research Unit, and Professor of Economics at the University of Cape Town. His research interests cover labour economics, poverty and income distribution. He has co-authored two books on labour market and poverty issues in South Africa. Haroon holds the prestigious National Research Chair under the theme of Economic Growth, Poverty and Inequality: Exploring the Interactions for South Africa. Among his many affiliations, Haroon is a member of the World Bank’s Advisory Board of the Commission on Global Poverty and was previously a member of the UN Commission on Legal Empowerment of the Poor (LEP). He has also undertaken extensive work for several South African government departments and served on a number of government research advisory panels.


Professor Ravi Kanbur – Cornell University
Ravi researches and teaches in development economics, public economics and economic theory. He is well known for his role in policy analysis and engagement in international development. He has served on the senior staff of the World Bank including as Chief Economist for Africa. Ravi is also ranked in the top 0.5% of academic economists in the world. He is President-Elect of the Human Development and Capabilities Association, Past-President of the Society for the Study of Economic Inequality, Chair of the Board of UNU-WIDER, Co-Chair of the Scientific Council of the International Panel on Social Progress, member of the High Level Advisory Council of the Climate Justice Dialogue, member of the OECD High Level Expert Group on the Measurement of Economic Performance, and a member of the Core Group of the Commission on Global Poverty.

Mr Rudi Dicks – Department of Planning Monitoring and Evaluation
Rudi Dicks is currently employed as an Outcome Facilitator: Decent work through inclusive growth at the Department of Planning Monitoring and Evaluation (DPME). Previously he held the position of Executive Director of the National Labour and Economic Development Institute (NALEDI) for four years, up until 2013. Prior to this, he was the Labour Market/Trade Policy Co-ordinator at COSATU. He was a member of the board of trustees of the ComMark Trust, a DFID-funded programme. Rudi also worked for Fair Share, a unit of the School of Government, University of the Western Cape as the Research Co-ordinator. He was also the Industrial Chemicals National Sector Coordinator at CEPPWAWU, an affiliate of COSATU.

Professor Michael Sachs – Head of the Budget Office in the National Treasury
Michael Sachs studied his MSc in Economics from the University of London (SOAS) and a MPAID in International Economics from Harvard Kennedy School of Government. He completed his secondary education at the ANC’s Solomon Mahlangu Freedom College
in Tanzania. He is the Deputy Director General of the Budget Office Division of the National Treasury. Previously he was the Chief Director of the Fiscal Policy Unit within the Budget Office Division. Prior to completing his MPAID, he held numerous positions in government including Chief Director of the International Finance and Development Unit at the National Treasury as well as holding the position of coordinator of the Economic Transformation Committee for the African National Congress.

Catherine MacLeod, Chief Director, National Treasury
Catherine MacLeod grew up in South Africa and holds a Bachelor of Economics (Honours) from the University of Stellenbosch and her Masters in Economics from Universitat Pompeu Fabra, focusing on behavioural and experimental economics. Catherine is the Chief Director of Macro Economic Policy at the National Treasury. Prior to joining National Treasury in 2010, Catherine spent eight years in London. She worked for Crown Agents as a macro economist and consultant on public financial management areas before moving on to become the global macroeconomist for BDO Stoy Hayward’s Investment Strategy Group. Catherine has wide-ranging experience in economics, financial markets, strategic asset allocation and risk management.​


Click HERE to listen to the live discussion, and ask questions.