A leading thinker and political commentator on democracy in South Africa is to speak as part of the University’s Future Lecture Series.
Professor Adam Habib, Vice Chancellor and Principal of the University of the Witwatersrand (Wits), will discuss issues around student protests in 2015 and ’16, which became the largest student movement in South Africa since it became a democratic country in 1994.
The lecture – led by the Edinburgh Futures Institute – takes place on Monday 15 October at 5.30pm in the University’s Playfair Library.
The event is free to attend, but booking is essential.
Futures Lecture Series | #FeesMustFall & the Advancement of Social Justice
15 October 2018
17:30 – 18:30
University of Edinburgh Playfair Library
The protests of 2015 and ‘16 sprung from two major challenges facing higher education: alienation and access.
The #RhodesMustFall movement – when University of Cape Town students demanded the removal of a statue of Cecil John Rhodes – reflected concerns about institutional racism and universities’ reluctance to evolve.
The #FeesMustFall movement was principally concerned with poor, black students gaining access to affordable, quality education.
It began at the University of the Witwatersrand and spread across the country, culminating in a march where former President Jacob Zuma conceded to a 0% fee increase for 2016.
During his talk, Professor Habib will reflect on these protests in South Africa, looking at their successes and failures, and the challenges they pose for advancing social justice.
Adam Habib is a Professor of Political Science with more than 30 years’ experience spanning five universities.
He has worked with government, students and other stakeholders to find solutions to the recent wave of protests around funding for higher education.
He has also focussed on building African research excellence, and together with the University of Cape Town, Wits initiated the African Research Universities Alliance (ARUA).
His latest book, South Africa’s Suspended Revolution: Hopes and Prospects, has informed debates around the country’s transition into democracy, as well as its prospects for inclusive development.