Uncivil and spectacle politics fan ethnic and racial hatred, deepen divides in our society, continuously violates the rights of others, and turn violent.
It was a modest, soft-spoken US Catholic nun, Sister Janice McLaughlin, who exposed the “protected villages” set up by the Rhodesian government in 1977.
The World Social Forum’s “Thematic Forum on Mining and Extractivism” convenes this week in Johannesburg,
Johannesburg was always a much photographed place from its earliest days. It was a city that grew up with photographers and their cameras.
Present indications are that South African voters are not gearing up to “do a Brazil” in the face of a mounting economic crisis and high levels of corruption.
From Maboneng in Jozi to Bandra in Mumbai, Neukölln in Berlin to Gulou in Beijing, and Crown Heights in Brooklyn to Hackney in London, hipsters are everywhere.
Across many parts of Africa homosexuality is often referred to as “unAfrican” - a western imposition that will undermine a traditional African.
The South African Reserve Bank placed VBS, a small mutual bank, under curatorship in March this year against a backdrop of a serious liquidity crisis.
Universities need to find ways to assist students who are passive in seeking help.
It is common cause that the performance of South Africa’s government, led by the African National Congress (ANC), has been worse than abysmal.
In the last week of October each year, libraries and open access activists around the world celebrate Open Access Week.
Bolsonaro is a slavery-denialist, who claims that the Portuguese never set foot in Africa and that Africans themselves “delivered” slaves to Brazil.
As elsewhere in the world, migration is increasingly at the centre of South Africa’s public and political debate.
A reflection on the media: consolidation and convergence – or shrivelling and sinking?
The complex relationship between Africa and China has become even more complicated this year.
Giving communal land to individual households, rather than mostly corrupt traditional overseers, will unlock real value, energy and entrepreneurship.
The latest reshuffling of South Africa’s finance minister may have negative origins but it brings with it some positive energy.
The climate situation is already worse in southern Africa than in most other regions, the region having crossed the 1.5°C warming level some years ago.
If politicians see only personal advantage from other's 'weakness’ – defined here as honesty, seeking forgiveness, repentance – then the future is bleak.
We have a new Finance Minister. Again.Tito Mboweni takes over amidst a recession and with a tricky political tide ebbing and flowing precariously.
Protecting research universities is key to growing the higher education sector and making South Africa globally competitive.
We have heard it said many times before: the SA electoral system does not provide a sufficient link between the citizen and the elected representative.
This is how TripAdvisor reviews provide insight into tourists’ experiences of weather, from which adaptation plans can be successfully implemented.
The key ethical issues doctors grappled with in the world's first liver transplant from HIV+ living donor to negative recipient.
An understanding of the interaction of humans with technology and technology with humans are key to grasp the impact of the fourth industrial revolution.
Connecting the dots differently to grasp the impact of climate change on people, and specifically, on public health.
Global water crises, and drought, desertification, water shortage and pollution, in South Africa and elsewhere on the continent, are not new.
The call by students to “decolonise science” still rings in many South African academics’ ears.
Few dispute that the South African economy is in serious trouble but how do we fix it?
It will be a lengthy and costly process to find out just how deep the state capture rot is and what the detritus is that former President Zuma has left behind.
The 1% point increase in Value Added Tax (VAT) rate this year has raised important questions about how the tax system can and should address inequality.
Google the word “seascape”, and you’ll find pictures of an aquamarine ocean, possibly with a touch of perfect coast line.
Foreign nationals have, yet again, been attacked, displaced and had their shops looted in South Africa.
The contemporary turn towards decolonial thinking is frequently cited in literature from the late 1990s and early 2000s.
Sub-Saharan Africa accounts for 13·5% of the global population but less than 1% of global research output.
A week of telling snapshots of combat between capture and recovery. The Zondo Commission hearings go to the heart of the answer to this question.
Two events on Twitter in recent weeks gave me the political chills.
The dire state of municipal governance in South Africa has been in the news for much of this year.
On the EFF's motion regarding the Reserve Bank and the South African Reserve Bank Amendment Bill.
After more than two decades in power, South Africa’s ruling party, the African National Congress (ANC) is in severe trouble.
A Health Market Inquiry into South Africa’s private health care sector has established that the market is dominated by a few players.
Kofi Annan served as United Nations Secretary-General during a pivotal decade in modern world history – from 1997 to 2006.
No author in contemporary times more wilfully damaged his reputation with cantankerous observations as did VS Naipaul.
South Africa needs to intervene to persuade Zanu-PF and the MDC Alliance leadership to secure peace through a coalition government.
Until recently, southern Africa’s political and economic outlook seemed to be moving in a promising direction.
If land reform is hijacked by the ANC for the purposes of winning the 2019 poll, South Africa could be on a slippery slope.
There are three broad approaches to which the land issue is debated – the instrumental, the functionalist and the symbolic.
A pioneer of storytelling and activism in South Africa, Ntshona died on 2 August this year.
Kenya is weighed down by swelling public debt and faces the possibility of a debt crisis (where the government can’t repay what it owes).
Technological advances are reshaping our lives, and our policies should be designed to enhance its creative and empowering potential.
How is it possible that we can have a society with so much wealth and so much poverty?
Explainer: How competitive is South Africa’s private health care sector?
Zebra stripes, leopard spots and the troubled king of the political jungle.
The story of South Africa’s switch from Taipei to Beijing.
In the past 20 years there has been a massive global push for mothers to exclusively breastfeed their newborns for the first six months of their lives.
South Africa’s fast approaching 2019 benchmark of 25 years of democracy is one that will be celebrated with circumspection.
What are the connecting threads between Mandela and Obama with regards to their failures and shortcomings?
Former US President Barack Obama will aim high with his Nelson Mandela Annual Lecture in Johannesburg on 17 July.
Since 1994 South Africa has invested substantial resources in health care services. As a result, it’s has made significant health gains.
In South Africa about 78% of people over the age of 60 suffer from hypertension but only 24% are on treatment.
Education enables social mobility. This is particularly true in a context of high inequality and high unemployment, such as South Africa.
South Africa’s Health Minister Aaron Motsoaledi has finally gazetted the bill detailing an ambitious plan to roll out National Health Insurance.
As it crafts its 2019 elections manifesto the African National Congress faces a prolonged “moment” of truth.
I am not a great fan of the EFF. I believe that it is a proto-fascist movement, one prone to racism, militarism and the politics of hatred.
Following the corporate scandals around KPMG and Steinhoff International, the legitimacy of business has fallen to levels not seen in recent history.
Five things you didn’t know about Rivonia trial lawyer Joel Joffe, lawyer extraordinaire.
Kenya is perceived as one of the world’s most corrupt countries, ranked 143 out of 180 on Transparency International’s 2017 corruption perception index.
Using predictions on a regular basis in engineering, as a civil engineer I’m fascinated by predictions of who will win the 2018 FIFA World Cup finals.
The prerequisite for successful African decolonisation is to put value on every individual African life.
Some observers of China’s global rise conclude that its influence is limited to military and economic capabilities.
The gunning down by the Israeli army of protesting Palestinians at the Gaza border in May has drawn international condemnation.
“What has changed?” could be the question as Jacob Zuma makes his way towards his next court appearance in the Durban High Court this week.
In 2014, the South African government announced a new direction in housing policy.
Cyril Ramaphosa’s rise to power has been greeted enthusiastically by most South Africans.
Recent actions by US President Donald Trump’s administration are severely straining relations with SA’s new government led by President Cyril Ramaphosa.
Politicians and the media expend inordinate amounts of energy debating migration, often using nativist, populist and xenophobic rhetoric.
It is common when municipal workers go on strike in South Africa to resort to upturning garbage cans and strewing litter around city centres.
Twenty four years since the advent of democracy, land remains a stark and visible symbol of dispossession and racial and income inequality.
The Mooi River protests could serve as a reminder of South Africa’s vulnerability to arterial occupation protests generally.
A recent exchange on Twitter between South African TV personality Sizwe Dhlomo and Western Cape Premier Helen Zille, is worthy of close examination.
Twenty-four years into SA's ‘miracle’ democracy, it is clear that 1994 and the constitutional settlements of 1993 and '96 were mere starting points.
It was just four and a half months ago that Matamela Cyril Ramaphosa won the presidency of the African National Congress (ANC) that governs South Africa.
The issue of expropriating land without compensation has been hogging headlines but it has pushed other critical dimensions of land reform into the background.
Around 260 million years, the earth was dominated by mammal like reptiles called therapsids.
Reliant on heavy industry and coal-fuelled electricity, South Africa is one of the most carbon intense economies in the world.
Many internationally renowned artists have faced campaigns to convince them not to perform in Israel in solidarity with the Palestinian liberation struggle.
Women frequently remain the primary caregivers and only a third of children in South Africa live with their biological fathers, research shows.
In the wake of the rush to claim pieces of Winnie Madikizela-Mandela, the landscape of South Africa’s present has been reshuffled.
Highly leveraged economies need to change tack and pursue stability and growth strategies.
Companies need to escape the circle of having PR campaigns prop up their image until people have an exaggerated expectation of their ethical performance.
To what extent does the Ramaphosa-Zuma contest (and to the extent that it has not been won yet) embody the real radical in South African society?
Much recent news and public discourse might seem to indicate that South Africa’s non-racial rainbow is fading.
Compared globally, South Africa has an unusually low share of employers and self-employed people in the labour force.
The influenza virus circulates every year and has the potential to turn into global epidemics.
For a long time, zoologists assumed that there were only two species of elephant: one Asian and one African.
The behaviour of the Steinhoff board, since the scandal exploded in December last year, confirms my early suspicions. The rot runs deeper.
Winnie Madikizela-Mandela’s death and departure from South African politics leaves a bridge-building void that will be filled with difficulty.
No other woman – in life and after – occupies the place that Winnie Madikizela-Mandela does in South African politics.
South Africa’s new President is presently receiving numerous plaudits on how he’s handling the transition from the troubled Jacob Zuma presidency.
The "Climate Crisis" highlights the importance of advancing a deep and just transition that decarbonises society.
South Africa is bracing itself for the first increase in Value Added Tax (VAT) in many years.
Tuberculosis (TB) is a disease that kills more people due to a bacterial infection than any other disease in the world.
The most likely alternative to VAT the Treasury would have taken would have been further cuts in expenditure - a move that would have cost the poor a lot more.
The South African Reserve Bank has placed a small bank – VBS Mutual Bank – under curatorship.
The structure of the South African economy is often overlooked as a factor of small business and entrepreneurship.
LiDAR, was used to “redraw” the remains of the city, along the lower western slopes of the Suikerbosrand hills near Johannesburg.
The last year also saw a rise in the intimidation and harassment of journalists in South Africa.
He remains a luminary for those of us who study gravity for a living for his deep physical insights.
The EFF may be more politically adept, but its track record is as populist, corrupt and administratively incompetent as the Zuma camp ever was.
Three key elements essential to protecting and defending democracy are now crucial in containing Trump’s threats to democracy.
Snakes are probably not the first creatures that spring to mind when you think about caring parents.
Each year UNESCO releases a World Water Assessment Report, a document that explores potential solutions to the globe’s water problems.
Many of these projects fail due to cultural insensitivity and misplaced communication strategies.
Ramaphosa will have to take control of the economic, justice, security and intelligence, infrastructure, mining and energy clusters of the cabinet.
South Africa needs to do more to support people living with disabilities who want to run their own businesses.
Will the new political dynamics of early 2018 still hold by the time South Africa gets to Election 2019, somewhere between April and June next year?
US President Donald Trump promised in late January that his Secretary of State Rex Tillerson would make an “extended” visit to Africa in March.
Declining subsidies and fees coupled with increasing demands for higher remuneration could jeopardise the future sustainability of universities in South Africa.
The story of Dr Trudy Thomas, a pioneer of community health care in South Africa.
Analysis: Unpacking the tax proposals in the 2018/19 National Budget though publicly available data.
A number of factors affect both the distribution and prevalence of disease and the effectiveness of interventions to prevent or reduce disease.
The flood of obituaries to the Zuma presidency are likely to stream in for some time to come.
Palaeontology, like much else in the cultural landscape, has a strong western influence and bias.
The ANC has made a dangerous habit of bringing post-apartheid South Africa to the brink of instability and the common ruin of all.
The country cannot mature into a full-blown democracy until major reforms are undertaken.
2018 Budget Speech: A unilateral increase on the least progressive tax component – VAT – will harm the poor and lower-income earners.
The City of Johannesburg is planning to provide 24-hour clinics in an attempt to increase access to health care. Why it is a good idea.
Cyril Ramaphosa’s first state of the nation speech restored dignity and decorum to parliament, and pressed all the right buttons.
What the new administration should do as a matter of priority to recover a state damaged by corruption and nepotism.
South Africa’s young democracy has emerged intact, albeit severely battered, from Jacob Zuma's tempestuous era.
Addressing unacceptably high level of inequality should be the focus of President Ramaphosa’s economic policies.
How many Messiahs can one country take? What kind of president will Cyril Ramaphosa be?
The Conversation Africa asked academics what lessons can be learnt, and how the ANC can redeem itself in the post-Zuma era.
Fourteen years ago SA researchers first picked up rising rates of high blood pressure in the population that led to people dying earlier than expected.
Cyril Ramaphosa has unfairly been criticised by political commentators for his attempt to negotiate Jacob Zuma's resignation.
Cryptocurrencies originated as an alternative payment mechanism to traditional currencies.
Ndoni Mcunu, PhD-candidate at the Global Change Institute at Wits University and founder of Black Women in Science (BWIS), shares her personal journey.
Ramaphosa’s rise has sparked optimism, but work must be done to tackle inequality and grow the economy.
Experience around the world is that, more often than not, water laws aren’t the problem.
President Jacob Zuma's determination to stay put is being widely condemned by a range of South African voices.
A leaf-feeding beetle is one of the most promising agents that help South Africa to control the spread of its worst invader plant.
Rather than the future of ANN7, South Africans should perhaps worry about Multichoice having so much power, and using it so cynically.
A study of the tooth sockets of one of the world’s most famous fossil skulls, “Mrs” Ples, has made scientists think differently about “her” sex.
Cape Town water crisis: crossing state and party lines isn’t the answer and no political party should lead a response to an urban governance crisis.
Achille Mbembe's “Critique of Black Reason” illuminates how the world can account for the construction and consequences of race and racism.
Expropriation assumptions reflect misunderstanding of Constitution.
New research shows after school clubs can be unsafe environments with opportunities for risky sexual behaviour and drug use.
Government ownership does not automatically imply government control.
South Africa’s power utility Eskom has seen a remarkable leadership shake up in the past few days.
The latest weapon in Cape Town’s water saving arsenal is a map that exposes private meter readings to public scrutiny.
Seven years after the popular uprising in Tunisia to oust President Zine el-Abidine Ben Ali, Tunisians are rising up again.
Why countries should break the crippling cycle of hosting big sporting events.
The large majority of South Africans, including members of the governing ANC, will be glad to see the back of Jacob Zuma as president.
Reactions from Africa were appropriately critical of President Donald Trump’s comments about not wanting immigrants from “shithole” countries coming to the US.
South Africans are trying to decode Ramaphosa, and getting it wrong.
Assumptions that the election of Cyril Ramaphosa as the new leader of the African National Congress, will place South Africa on an even keel are misplaced.
A corporate scandal unfolding around one of the largest businesses coming out of South Africa, Steinhoff, has become a major cause for concern.
The debate about electoral reform in post-1994 SA has largely focused on the system used to elect MPs and their counterparts in the country’s nine provinces.
Cape Town, South Africa’s second most populous city, is hurtling towards “Day Zero”: the day taps run dry.
It is widely accepted that SA is one of the most unequal societies in the world.
Cameroon has been a member of the African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA) initiative since it was launched in 2000.
In the age of disinformation and the rise in populism and nationalism, journalists should stick with the Press Code and follow the Constitution.
The suspense is tangible as the African National Congress (ANC) – South Africa’s former liberation movement that’s turned into a tired governing party
To advance transformation in our medical school, we changed our admissions processes three years ago, enabling special access for students from rural schools.
Last year SA became the first country in Africa to register the use of a drug that could be used as an oral pre-exposure prophylaxis for HIV prevention.
Many cultures and societies throughout the world turn to traditional healers to find out why they are ill and to seek treatment.
South Africa has made tremendous advances in providing lifesaving antiretroviral therapy for HIV infected people.
It is troubling in a constitutional democracy that laws exist allowing people to be deprived of their livelihoods without any inquiry at all.
South Africa has joined only a handful of countries in the world close to imposing a sugary drinks tax.
Robert Mugabe’s endgame in Zimbabwe holds various lessons for his South Africa's Jacob Zuma as he too considers his prospects towards the end of his presidency.
The act of giving by business, and wealthy and skilled individuals can make important contributions to solving our pressing problems.
South Africa has produced two must-read thrillers in the past week.
One of South Africa’s biggest cities, Cape Town, is gripped by a rising panic.
Professor Peter Hain talks to The Conversation Africa’s Charles Leonard about alleged illicit financial transactions centred around South Africa’s President.
Over the last 20 years Johannesburg has become an intense wholesale and retail centre for local hawkers and for traders from all over sub-Saharan Africa.
The time to account has come for the International Finance Corporation, a member of the World Bank Group.
Zimbabwe’s financial system increasingly resembles a house of cards
In celebrating his centenary, Oliver Tambo’s insights remain relevant for today's ANC and in South Africa.
The theory that humans emerged in Africa is often questioned. And that is good.
For 27 years Angola was gripped by civil war. Half a million human lives were lost and wildlife, too, was decimated to sustain troops.
Why media freedom remains fragile in South Africa and the battle is not over.
There’s a great deal hanging on Gigaba's 2017 medium term budget policy statement on 25 October 2017.
Dams in South Africa’s Cape Town are half of what they were this time last year as the city continues to battle drought.
Two books, a decade apart, get very different public responses. Why?
French has been taught and learned in South African classrooms for decades, even though it isn’t one of the country’s official languages.
Fracking, hydraulic fracturing and horizontal drilling, has in the past few decades made available the gas in previously ‘tight’ shale geologies.
Africa’s leaders have waited eight months for US President Donald Trump’s administration to explain its Africa policy.
Compare the state of two political parties which share a close past connection but which today face distinctly different futures.
The goal of one united South African nation living prosperously under a constitutional democracy remains elusive.
It is 40 years since Black Wednesday when the apartheid regime unleashed its brutal violence against the press.
“The struggle for liberty continues to rage, even in a free society,” Adam Habib tells Change/Exchange.
We must have a public discourse on what justifiably is required for redemption.
The outcome of the December conference will affect the ANC’s subsequent election prospects more directly than any of its six preceding meetings since 1991.
The South African arm of the international accounting firm KPMG has learnt the hard lesson: Don't break the 11th commandment - don’t get caught.
By resigning, the KPMG executives reinforced the principle of executive responsibility.
The skeletal anatomy of mammals’ early ancestors has been studied for more than 150 years.
More digital avenues are being added to South Africa’s museums – and now the country has its first full VR exhibit.
My blackness is supposedly visible only because I do not “look white”.
Africa has an extensive archaeological record, extending as far back as 3.3 million years ago.
South African Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa fell for old usual dirty game of electioneering.
BRICS is being battered by global crises: why this might not be a bad thing.
The former US President's record-setting tweet, surpassing 1.6 million retweets and 4.5 million "likes", has captured the imagination of world. But why?
Public Protector, Busisiwe Mkhwebane, has clearly overstepped the mark with Reserve Bank case.
Commissions of inquiry are often nothing but cynical political tools to reestablish a form of normalcy after a nation’s traumatic event.
It needs to be a socio-economic policy tool to effect a substantive change in wealth distribution.
Stolen or not, Associate Professor James Grant says SA courts have discretion whether to admit evidence.
City governments around the world are increasingly challenging nation states when it comes to development, human rights and governance.
On the evening of 26 July, over 5,000 people streamed into Wits Art Museum in Johannesburg to attend the opening of its latest exhibition, Warhol Unscreened.
Imagine a rhinoceros-like beast with a sprawling, lizard-like gait and you will picture quite a good portrait of what Moschops looked like.
Lessons from the motion of no confidence in President Jacob Zuma in South Africa’s National Assembly.
Open letter to MPs on the motion of no confidence in President Jacob Zuma taking place in Parliament on August 8.
South Africa’s governing African National Congress has got itself into one hell of a pickle.
Glaucoma is a group of diseases that damage the eye’s optic nerve and results in vision loss and irreversible blindness in some people.
Has the Middle East – now beset by inter-nation, inter-Muslim and inter-ethnic conflict – been engulfed in a war without end?
Calling it “radical” is to invite politicking and point-scoring and take our eyes off the ball – the need for real economic transformation.
Fred Khumalo's latest novel, “Dancing the Death Drill”, is also about the present as much as it is about the past.
Hypertension is a rising global health problem. An estimated one billion people live with what is more commonly known as high blood pressure.
Economy will continue to flounder without honest reflection and genuine commitment to tackle inequality.
[Explainer] The possibility of “fracking” in the Karoo, an arid part of South Africa that spans more than 400 000 square kilometres, has provoked heated debate.
Debates on monetary policy in South Africa over the last couple of decades seem to have come from a madhouse.
The ruling party's leaders are too weak to lead, or too weak to take over.
Water shortages in Cape Town are here to stay. What the city can learn from others.
"Thinking of the ANC Women's League as a space for gender activism is a waste of time," says Professor Shireen Hassim.
South Africa’s governing African National Congress (ANC) enters its 2017 policy conference riven and weakened.
When G20 leaders meet in Hamburg in early July they face a problem not on their formal agenda: how to work around Donald Trump.
Public Protector Busisiwe Mkhwebane sent shock waves across the country by calling for an amendment to the South African Reserve Bank’s constitutional mandate.
South Africa remains mired not only in corruption or the challenges to it, but also in past injustices and how to address them.
Baleka Mbete does have the power to call for a secret ballot but should she?
The changing times of an Indian migrant milliner. Nothing brings together style, history and social organisation more than a hat.
"Although it looks very dangerous it is actually not meant to kill anybody," says Professor Hlonipha Mokoena.
In an interview following his recent return as Prime Minister of Lesotho, Tom Thabane has blamed the army for the country’s chronic political instability.
South Africa recently launched a five-year plan to improve the country’s response to HIV, TB and sexually transmitted infections.
South Africa’s march into a democracy was greatly helped by a multiparty government of national unity established after the 1994 elections.
In the biggest data dump in South African history, between 100 000 and 200 000 emails have been leaked by an anonymous source to journalists.
[WATCH] Lumkile Mondi says the country urgently needs moral leadership that speaks to the values of the Constitution.
The country's economic activity is declining and South Africa is in a technical recession. Here's what it means:
The victory of the National Party (NP) in 1948’s elections threw palaeontology into a crisis.
Keratolytic Winter Erythema – more commonly referred to as KWE – is a genetic skin disease affecting the palms and the soles.
South Africa’s Constitution is clear on a number of issues related to the relationship between the country’s parliament and its executive.
The 2017 French election was watched with great nervousness by millions across Francophone Africa.
Chinese President Xi Jinping made it clear at the World Economic Forum meeting in Davos that the world should abandon protectionism.
Scientists who find 7.2-million-year-old pre-human remains in the Balkans makes claim that humankind originated in Europe.
Why the alcohol industry's expansion into underdeveloped countries is bad news for health.
The Eastern Cape is South Africa’s most conservative province when it comes to attitudes about homosexuality.
Dams and related water infrastructures are once again being recognised as key contributors to a prosperous and sustainable future.
It is not just a policy project but also an ‘ethical project’ and social mission.
Economic scholars quiz Reserve Bank Governor, Lesetja Kganyago, about the country's current economic landscape.
There are few things more exciting for a professional palaeontologist than discovering fossil remains.
Many would like to consign the polarising debate about “white monopoly capitalism” (WMC) in South Africa to the margins.
The way we work will be ground zero for waves of change, so South Africa must start making plans.
Several towns in the north-eastern region of Nigeria have been overrun by Boko Haram militants, who are engaged in violent clashes with authorities.
New activism requires an urgent need to establish a political and socio-economic agenda that addresses inequality in our society.
Abandon the naive thought that, with the internet and free flow of information, governments are retreating from repression of the media.
The newly launched trade union grouping in South Africa promises to be a voice for the growing numbers of unorganised and marginalised workers in the country.
Across the world there are limited tools available for controlling mosquitoes.
Caesarean sections have been lifesaving procedures for hundreds of thousands of women across the world who experience complications during labour.
Wits University’s Journalism and Media Studies Department have just published their latest State of the Newsroom report.
South Africa has been wrapped up in public and parliamentary debates on the value of South Africa’s proposed sugar tax.
We may look back and say that it was this moment when it became manifest that Zuma’s faction of the ANC would be prepared to resort to violence.
When you think of the world’s bicycle friendly cities, Johannesburg probably doesn’t feature. That’s not for lack of trying.
The “what if” game is popular with the media and the commentariat in South Africa.
President Jacob Zuma cost the ruling African National Congress millions of votes in the country’s local government elections in 2016.
SA is digesting the news of Standard & Poor’s (S&Ps) downgrade of its state debt held in foreign currency following President Jacob Zuma’s cabinet reshuffle.
Generational rebellion is the dynamic through which societies renew themselves and move forward.
Exactly when did human beings start tipping their weapons with poison to hunt prey?
Wits Justice Project and others help release two more wrongfully convicted men after 14 years in jail.
Academics pen open letter asking Cabinet, the ANC NEC and Parliament to end “breathtaking” act of political arrogance.
It would seem that a simple vote of no confidence in the president is the easiest to pursue. But what are the chances of success?
SA enters a new political chapter that promises catastrophic outcomes after Jacob Zuma reshuffled his cabinet by firing the Pravin Gordhan and Mcebisi Jonas.
Ahmed ‘Uncle Kathy’ Kathrada, an unassuming, quiet man who has left South Africans with a legacy that’s immediate, not historical.
It’s remarkable how much of a shitstorm Twitter creates when in the hands of politicians – with serious costs for the rest of us.
It’s remarkable how a South African politician as intelligent as Helen Zille, premier of the Western Cape, did something so unutterably stupid.
Diagnosing TB in people who have HIV has been a challenge because they often have low levels of the bacteria in their system.
South Africa was rightly proud of its water supply achievements in the first decade of democracy after the 1994 elections.
Humans and animals need to do several things to pass on their genes: eat, avoid being eaten, reproduce and sleep.
Trump has shown little awareness so far of the history of cooperation between China, the US and Africa.
The national conversation about land, always simmering in South Africa, has come to the boil again.
Mining industry is increasingly cited as a key sector that must yield “radical economic transformation” and help heal SA's deeply divided and unequal society.
Services for people who are deaf can be very expensive.
How the first Master of Arts in South African Sign Language was supervised at Wits.
Puff adders uses two ways to entice its prey - a new study shows.
The AU's latest meeting was different. It showed the organisation is serious about finding practical, lasting solutions to contemporary continental problems.
South Africa’s budget: Lumkile Mondi and Jannie Rossouw to shed light on the the minister’s speech.
Rich people should bear a higher burden of taxes, because the “1%” ultra-wealthy have done extremely well since 1994.
Zuma’s call for radical economic transformation appears more like populist cheap politicking than effective economic policy.
The South African government pays dedicated care workers less than anyone else in its employ - as little as R500 (US$39) a month.
The South African government’s failure to fix a corrupted R10 billion social grant payment contract has caused a crisis.
Far beneath Mauritius’ inactive volcanoes lies an astonishing, important piece of the Earth’s history: a fragment of ancient continental crust.
The master signifier in fake news is power and politics.
Donald Trump’s February 13 calls to Nigeria’s President Muhammadu Buhari and South Africa’s Jacob Zuma are his first signals of interest in sub-Sahara Africa.
There has been a southward shift in tropical cyclones in the region, studies show the last few decades show.
The form of the love letter is a useful way for us to think about romantic love in Africa.
This year's SoNA was not a reflection of the reality in South Africa.
Baron Franz Nopcsa, a particularly colourful figure in the history of palaeontology, was right.
Let’s face it. Over the last three years the annual State of the Nation address in South Africa has become embarrassing.
Social and business networks with other farmers, government and civil society are key spinoffs.
A few weeks before classes started, academics and support staff from 19 universities and 10 unions met in Johannesburg to debate solutions.
Research has shown that the process of writing can be used as a tool to stimulate and encourage deep learning approaches.
Pregnancy and childbearing reduces women’s income-generating potential and introduces a host of new expenses.
South Africa’s 2017/18 budget will have to be bold to pull the country out of the prevailing economic crisis.
Patient deaths show South Africa’s care for the mentally ill is in disarray.
SA's high levels of poverty, racism and inequality can almost entirely be attributed to centuries of conflict between white settlers and indigenous Africans.
South Africa’s public broadcaster, the SABC, is in trouble. It has been for years. But things are a little more dangerous than before.
Welcome to Wits University, a place to call your own, and your home for the next few years.
It is no surprise that poorly run municipalities are often home to failing endeavours rife with mismanagement.
In a world set on objectifying everybody and every living thing in the name of profit, the erasure of the political by capital is the real threat.
Sadly the top contender of the country's top position offers more of the same.
[The Star] Wealth disparities undermine the social and economic fabric of our society.
How selfies and family photos put 300 million years of evolution on display.
An outbreak of bird flu has been reported in Uganda where hundreds of birds were found dead on the shores of Lake Victoria. Some key facts about the virus.
How night club bouncers police the social order all over the world.
The history of science abounds with stories about discoveries made by chance but when it comes to big finds it is more than luck and chance.
There is an increasing global demand for food, water and energy. All three are inter-linked and increasingly the focus for policy makers and government.
Africa has occupied a more or less constantly insignificant position in both Republican and Democratic administrations in the US since the 1960s.
Could this resistance be mobilised into a global movement against Trump, perhaps drawing lessons from the victory against apartheid South Africa?
The CIA’s Global trends report provides a useful starting point to reflect on what’s in store for Africa over the next five years.
South Africa’s President Jacob Zuma kicked off the new year by declaring that God was on the side of the ruling African National Congress (ANC).
The South African government completed its term as lead-chair of the Open Government Partnership (OGP) in December 2016.
What you need to know about how your sugar intake over the holidays has impacted on your health.
The Conversation Africa’s education editor Natasha Joseph asked Associate Professor Elizabeth Walton to explain the results.
The Conversation Africa business and economy editor Sibonelo Radebe asked Thanti Mthanti to highlight key events and look at future prospects.
US President-elect Donald Trump’s nominee to lead the US Environmental Protection Agency, Scott Pruitt, publicly questions the existence of climate change.
Panashe is a 26-year-old Zimbabwean woman living with HIV. She works in a restaurant on the western peripheries of Johannesburg.
Many South Africans were outraged by the recent announcement that for 2016, pupils in Grades 7 to 9 could progress to the next grade with only 20% in Maths.
South Africa’s President Jacob Zuma narrowly escaped a call from some senior members of the governing party’s national executive committee for him to step down.
The Conversation Africa asked contributors to list five books, records, buildings and works of art, in their field that made a difference to them in 2016.
The first 1000 days of life – the period from conception to the age of two – are pivotal for any human being’s development.
Towards the end of each year hundreds of thousands of people escape dark, cold, rainy winters in Europe and North America for a break in sunny South Africa“.
Credit rating agencies are dangerous institutions. Their mistakes can be catastrophic to investors and the broader economy.
African governments are understandably concerned about how Donald Trump’s surprise election as the 45th US president might affect their interests.
This reflection builds on my earlier analysis of the #FeesMustFall protests and reflecting strategically on the challenges facing higher education today.
"We must accept that although the notion of interracial friendship has sometimes threatened to overshadow the importance of black dignity."
A lot of what is being presented as radical economic transformation initiatives in South Africa is simply state capture by a corrupt elite.
The DRC is expected to go to the polls to elect a new leader to succeed President Joseph Kabila, whose mandate expires on 19 December.
Gates answers questions from several African academics, including academics from Wits, about HIV/AIDS on the continent:
Economics is a discipline that ought, at its best, to explain the world and its complexities. Unlike physics, it is not an exact science.
The South African government has moved a step closer to introducing a national minimum wage – the first ever in the country.
Four times as many people have Type II diabetes today as 36 years ago, according to the World Health Organisation.
Rating agencies are shortly expected to announce their decision on whether to retain South Africa’s sovereign credit rating, or to downgrade it.
During South Africa’s anti-apartheid struggle, national liberation politics was mass politics.
There are several ways to find out whether a population’s health is improving or if people in a particular country, city or region are getting sicker.
School science education is important for those who want to pursue a career in the sciences – and for those who don’t.
There was nothing radical or transformative in the medium-term budget announced by Finance Minister, Pravin Gordhan last month.
Mbeki missed a major opportunity to assert the primacy of South Africa’s constitution eight years ago.
French philosopher René Descartes believed that the pineal gland, a tiny button of neurons located in the depth of our brain, was the seat of the soul.
Donald Trump’s unexpected victory in the US presidential polls stunned many across the globe.
There is concern about the implications of Trump’s election for international affairs, and particularly for American foreign policy in Africa.
Africa is home to about 16% of the world’s population. That’s 1.2 billion people.
Giving Zuma amnesty to save SA becomes a very bad idea if one probes just a little bit deeper.
Recent political events in South Africa show a disturbing lack of respect for ordinary people by those who hold authority.
Pravin Gordhan presented the 2016 mid term budget in a politically toxic and economically challenging environment.
South Africa’s Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan delivered his medium-term budget with a lot more than balancing the books on his mind.
Much of South Africa has good grazing for livestock. And sheep, goats and cattle have played an important role in the history of the region’s diverse cultures.
The polarising effects of #FeesMustFall are now pervasive in the academy, and probably beyond.
Many people believe that water shortages will threaten global food security. That is not true.
This year marks the centenary of the publication of Plaatje’s seminal book, “Native Life” in South Africa.
For someone who only frequents Braamfontein in downtown Johannesburg during the day, De Beer Street at night would be almost unrecognisable.
A Brazilian leader’s faux pas spoke volumes about the state of the BRICS alliance, ahead of the 8th BRICS summit in India.
At a time when decolonisation is dominating debate at many universities, the discipline of mathematics presents an interesting case.
Up to three quarters of people living with HIV suffer from pain.
In a little-heralded move in 2015, the Nelson Mandela Foundation released a “position paper” on race and identity.
In 1912 it was announced that some remains of “the earliest Englishman” had been found in a gravel pit.
Plugging the knowledge-gap helps.
At the very beginning of the 1960s, a South African palaeontologist embarked on a series of ambitious works.
The arrival of climate change brings with it large-scale habitat loss and unprecedented species extinctions.
In more vulnerable people, such as those who have a more anxious disposition, this might lead to them developing features of an acute stress disorder.
Next time you’re getting ready for a hot date and pause to flash a toothy grin at yourself in the mirror, thank your ancestors.
Neither smoke from police stun grenades, burning buildings nor officialdom’s smoke and mirrors will solve the problem.
The idea of “education for the masses” – rapidly increasing university enrolment rates – has changed the face of higher education in the past 50 years.
Sobering lessons from India and South Africa.
Cancer is often viewed as a fundamentally modern and monolithic disease.
This new epoch will be defined by human domination of earth’s physical and natural environment.
There are suggestions that the African National Congress (ANC) in South Africa lost the plot after the ascension of Jacob Zuma as the party’s president in 2007.
The project invites artists and viewers to reconfigure the coordinates of how we understand our place in our world in ways that are intriguing and liberating.
State capture: After Pravin Gordhan, is the Governor of the SA Reserve Bank next?
The major metropolitan cities in South Africa rose up in revolt in the municipal elections on August 3 2016.
This fascination with the texture of black hair (please don’t call it “ethnic”), is not new.
For the sake of future generations, it is critical that we teach our children to eat well.
It seems that the Olympic Games have passed “peak television”, with worldwide viewership numbers for Rio 2016 down substantially from London four years ago.
The old world as South Africa knew it, of ANC majorities and policy certainty, seems to be at an end – and all does not seem fine, within the ANC at least.
Not all of South Africa’s student protests in the past 18 months have happened in the streets or on campuses.
South Africa’s economic capital, Johannesburg, has a new mayor, Herman Mashaba. Does a business background matter in public service, particularly in SA?
The problems at South Africa’s public broadcaster have become legendary in the country.
The local food and beverage industry are squaring up against the proposed sugary drinks tax expected to be implemented in April 2017.
SA academics have collectively penned an open letter expressing their outrage at the unseemly attacks on the Minister of Finance and the National Treasury.
Should Trump win the election the main lesson for Africa’s democrats would be that no democracy, however old and institutionally strong, is ever secure.
The country needs to accept the reality that the time when national airlines flew as carriers of national pride is a thing of the past.
It seems that South Africa’s universities are on a knife-edge once more. Its students are ready to march again.
South Africa has toppled Nigeria and reclaimed its status as the largest economy in Africa.
The Conversation - Africa asks Wits filmmaker about the film that has influenced him the most: Spike Lee’s “Do The Right Thing”
The recent municipal elections do not show that political parties consider women’s issues relevant or important.
We the South African voters have spoken in the local government election, and we said many different things.
Unless leaders take the hard decision to remove the president, the party could lose the character that made it one of Africa’s great liberation movements.
South Africa’s 2016 municipal elections were held against the backdrop of challenging economic conditions in the country.
Despite all these benefits, only 38% of babies are exclusively breastfed across the world.
It can also lead to increased economic growth without significant negative economic consequences.
Family murder as a phenomenon was particular to the late apartheid era and developed when it did because it had meaning outside of itself.
For the first time in the country’s democratic era since 1994, the governing ANC has ceased being an untouchable liberation movement.
Many questions have been thrown up by the discovery in South Africa of a previously unidentified human relative, Homo naledi.
Its problems are largely homemade. What must be done to improve the economy?
There is an urgent need to rethink the ways that prevention and treatment programmes are developed and implemented.
More than 18,000 scientists, clinicians, experts, civil society representatives and leaders are International AIDS Conference in Durban.
HIV changed South African society at a time when it needed no distraction as it battled to rebuild a nation post-apartheid.
Twenty years ago when someone acquired HIV, they would, on average, not live more than 12 years.
The UK’s foreign policy direction and representation are led by a man who seemingly does not maintain a filter for appropriate comment.
The Conversation - Africa asks experts to share what they believe are the most influential works in their field.
One of the most hotly debated topics in development economics is: what does it take to steer a poor country from Third World to First World status?
Many media people, politicians (including many in the ANC) and other citizens have literally given up on the SABC, saying it is not salvageable.
Up Up: Stories of Johannesburg’s Highrises is a slab of a book about buildings and stories from Johannesburg’s original city centre.
The South African government needs to adopt a servant-governance approach to address concerns about corruption and state capture.
South African media recently published an unsettling interview with Mandla Matikinya, a branch leader of the African National Congress (ANC) Youth League.
Explainer: Africa’s largest economy has finally floated its fixed currency exchange rate for the first time in history.
Election year. Political rhetoric. Sweeping statements... Separating fact from fiction.
Natasha Joseph, science and technology editor of The Conversation Africa, chats to lead researcher Dr Julien Benoit about their new study.
As markets plunged after the UK voted to exit the EU, Africa’s trade relations with both the EU and UK will be affected by the decision.
Foreign corporations are drawing away profits far faster than they are reinvesting or than local firms bring home offsetting profits from abroad.
The South African government recently outlined several measures to cut its running cost, such as a R7 billion reduction in the public sector wage bill.
South Africa has narrowly survived a downgrade of the rating of its government bonds.
University students of 2015-16 have some key things in common with their 1976 predecessors.
South Africa’s agribusinesses will find themselves at the back of the queue for water in future.
Providing free education to all citizens has inestimable value and limitless possibilities.
Influenza, more commonly known as flu, kills between 6,000 and 11,000 South Africans every year.
There are often disagreements both within and across intelligence agencies as to the seriousness of a potential threat.
What role should sociologists play in situations of large-scale suffering and exploitation?
Why should South Africa remain within the International Criminal Court?
With local government elections coming up in August 2016, South Africa’s biggest political parties recently launched their manifestos at mass rallies.
How "free" is the internet in South Africa and the question of cost.
“RFK in the Land of Apartheid: A Ripple of Hope” was recently screened at the University of the Witwatersrand (Wits) with filmmaker Larry Shore.
Advocate Shaun Abrahams, South Africa’s National Director of Public Prosecutions, has stepped into some torrid waters.
There are two features of life on the African continent that are fundamentally deadly to socioeconomic development.
Wikipedia’s detractors will tell you that the site is inaccurate, incomplete and unreliable.
The "End of Whiteness" reveals the pathological, paranoid and bizarre consequences that the looming end of apartheid had on white culture in South Africa.
South Africa may become the first African country to decriminalise sex work.
Self-congratulatory rhetoric keeps springing from the lips of World Economic Forum elites – at the expense of reality.
Amid the growing protest turmoil on our campuses and in our towns, SA’s leaders seem to have abandoned Madiba’s legacy of reason in rage.
South Africa needs a radical change in its approach to local economic development, to generate medium to long-term revenues.
One key measure of a country’s levels of freedom and democracy is how the government treats journalists and how free they are to do their work.
Africa, with the exception of North Africa, came second in rankings on the most improved media environment since 2015.
In South Africa, illegal mining as it currently stands covers all aspects of unpermitted mining.
There are a few established “rules” for being a good parent.
WHO report confirms that the increase in diabetes is higher in low- and middle-income countries.
How water is used in water-scarce countries is much more complex and requires informative decision-making.
Bilateral investment treaties have been a source of political controversy in recent years.
The mega-trends for the continent that will feature in the 2016 edition of the UN's Global Trends.
Women make up the majority of an estimated 6000 urban farmers in Cape Town.
More than 4400 miners who contracted silicosis and TB from working on the Anglo American South Africa and AngloGold Ashanti mines will have to be compensated
An African dance festival that's been one step ahead through the decades.
A great deal of detail about poverty and inequality in South Africa remains unspoken.
Over the last three years South Africa’s President Jacob Zuma has made several promises to improve health care in his annual state of the nation address.
Post the Cold War and in the age of high finance, the performance of narrow representative democratic politics has spawned three types of presidential politics.
Elephant populations in southern Africa’s national parks have increased dramatically in recent years.
Material unearthed from William Shakespeare’s garden and hometown suggests that the famed British playwright smoked cannabis.
Professor Adam Habib delivered the “African Voices @UCL”-lecture at University College London on 25 January 2016:
Deputy director of the South Africa’s National Institute of Communicable Diseases shares knowledge about typhoid fever.
Climate change is a global problem. But local actions are needed to reduce its impact.
The rand’s weakening could not have come at a worse time for South Africa.
Wits economist, Dr Kenneth Creamer, says drought in southern Africa and related rising food costs will put disproportionate pressure on poor households.
There is a rather one-sided, reductive and commonplace perception that South African President Jacob Zuma is a dangerous man.
Is South Africa finally maturing to the point that the economic - not just political - compromises of the 1990s democratic transition can be reconsidered?
South African women still experience social prejudice around pregnancy and the reproductive decisions they make.
Universities as producers of new knowledge cannot reinforce the inequality by allowing knowledge production to occur only in better-resourced countries.
Multipurpose Prevention Technologies, more commonly known as MPTs, are a new class of product in development.
In 2017 there will be 1.2 million more obese adults in South Africa - study
China’s choice of South Africa to host the China-Africa summit underscores the special relationship between the two countries.
Estimating the age of fossils is important because it allows palaeoanthropologists the opportunity to try to draw up a family tree.
Money will be one of the thorniest issues on the United Nations' Conference of Parties, or COP21, agenda in Paris.
Traditional initiation involving circumcision remains an important topic in South Africa for several reasons.
The case of the VW Group shows that this noble goal has failed dismally - it was the result of deliberate deceit.
It is time we took a long term view of schooling: one that looks at these things across their lifespan rather than just at matric as an exit point from school.
Thomas Piketty’s visit to South Africa provides an opportunity to think creatively about what is driving inequality in the country.
With his 300-year-old datasets, Piketty demolishes the Kuznets hypothesis.
As tension slowly swells up, it becomes ever more important to hold on to the things that truly matter.