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In the spotlight: Xenophobia

- By Wits University

With the spate of xenophobic attacks in Gauteng, Wits academics and researchers are contributing to the public discourse by giving expert opinion and in-depth analysis.

Since the first xenophobic outbreak in 2008, our experts have been at the forefront to advise, inform and warn government and related stakeholders of the rise and impact of xenophobia and the related violence.

With their continuous research they also regularly debunk the myths and misconceptions that fuel these racially charged incidents.

Studies conducted by the Gauteng City-Region Observatory, including the Quality of Life Survey, released in August 2014, give a snapshot of foreign traders’ contribution to employment. Read the full story on on how foreign shops are twice as likely to hire locals.

In an article on, the myth that foreigners “steal our jobs” is debunked.

Professor Loren B Landau from the African Centre for Migration & Society answers questions on the recent attacks on the Centre’s Facebook page. Also read his opinion piece from last year, warning how xenophobic denialism helps to distract us.

Professor Stephen Tuson from the Wits Law School answers the question: Can one kill in defence of property? This is in reaction to the shooting of a teen who alleged attempted to rob a foreign-owned shop that is believed to have sparked this year’s attacks.

For comment: or from the ACMS

The Wits Centre for Diversity Studies