Perspectives is a publication of the regional office of the Heinrich Böll Stiftung in Africa. With this new publication, we intend to let experts from Africa express their views about current political issues on the continent. more»
April 2, 2013 -
This review of the State of the Nation Address (SONA) for 2013, as delivered by President Jacob Zuma in parliament on 14 February 2013, gauges how government’s priorities for the year will affect the social, political and economic status of women. It also measures the advances made with regards to the five priorities the president set in the 2009 SONA, namely: Decent work, education, crime, health and rural development and agrarian reform.
- December 6, 2012 -
Violence against women is a significant societal problem but despite its pervasiveness in South Africa and its recognised status as a severe form of discrimination, it does not appear to feature significantly on the political agenda.
- July 29, 2010 - The paper examines whether democracy at the country level and global climate change matter for another. It raises the question of how to support democracy’s advance in the face of multiple challenges that include the adverse effects of global warming and extreme weather events merits much more attention than it has received so far. By Peter Burnellmore»
- July 12, 2010 - Parliament's portfolio committee on energy has less than a fortnight in which to intervene on the public’s behalf, before SA gets locked into an energy policy that could turn it into an economic dinosaur. The consequences of this could be soaring inflation, burdensome carbon taxes, loss of “green” job creation opportunities, and growth of an energy intensive economy at a time when much of the globe is steering away from this technology. By Leonie Joubertmore»
- March 5, 2010 - This paper pursues three closely related objectives: to review the field of international and local research which, particularly over the past two decades, has pointed to the positive causal relationship between functional school libraries and improved learner outcomes; to contextualize the current state of affairs in South African schools; and lastly, to provide detailed cost estimates which can be used as the basis for a comprehensive implementation plan. more»
- February 25, 2010 - While the issue of a Women’s Ministry was raised during the transitional phase it was never considered a viable option for the following reasons: limited success in terms of policy impact both in the West and in developing countries, and a dumping ground for all issues dealing with women. By Amanda Gouwsmore»
- February 2, 2010 - This article attempts an analysis of Women’s Ministries (structures on the level of the executive) that are normally tasked with the implementation of policy and legislation. It does so by looking at the experience of Women’s Ministries in the north, as well as in Africa. It also reflects on the more recent histories in the north of the dismantling of gender machineries as a consequence of gender mainstreaming. By Amanda Gouwsmore»
- December 14, 2009 - In his article Henning Melber gives an overall assessment of Namibia’s probably most turbulent elections twenty years into democracy. Sections of this article will form part of an upcoming issue of Perspectives providing detailed analysis on some of the key issues around Namibia’s 2009 election. more»
- December 1, 2009 - If we want institutions that watch over our rights, we ought to do more to watch over them. The appointment of a new Human Rights Commission (HRC) a few weeks ago should have been controversial. The new chair, former public protector Lawrence Mushwana, has been criticised by some for a perceived unwillingness to tackle political power-holders. Half the commissioners are former African National Congress (ANC) MPs, while respected figures with no ties to the ANC were ignored. By Steven Friedmanmore»
- November 10, 2009 - Citizens' organisations in South Africa may have more influence than they believe - but only if they think more strategically and try harder to represent people at the grassroots. This is the key finding of this study of civil society organisations undertaken by the Centre for the Study of Democracy at Rhodes University and the University of Johannesburg and funded by the Heinrich Boell Foundation. more»
- August 14, 2009 - Historically, women have been excluded from public life and still occupy largely peripheral and powerless positions when they do enter that realm. For this reason, women have developed a different voice, which can be described as a “submerged discourse”. This paper will engage with the extent to which the ANC, through the resolutions adopted at Polokwane in 2007, has attempted to create a policy framework within which the new government seeks to render women’s “submerged discourses” visible. By Joy Watsonmore»
- May 25, 2009 - The creation of another structure in the form of a ministry to promote the rights of women, this time alongside other disempowered groups, is ill-considered. A more worthwhile effort would have been to fix the problems plaguing the existing gender structures, rather than creating a whole new bureaucracy. By Christi van der Westhuizenmore»
- There is no doubt that the 2009 elections were the most competitive and important since 1994. In putting to the test several features of the country’s political landscape their outcomes will play a key role in shaping the nation’s futures. With this dossier we hope to provide an accessible survey of the issues which shaped South Africa’s 2009 elections. more»
- With a combination of background articles and opinion pieces the Zimbabwe Elections 2008 Dossier aimed to contribute to a better understanding of the events around the 2008 elections in Zimbabwe. more»
The central ambition of this paper is to offer a framework for the appropriate climate finance architecture, one that identifies the key elements for a national set of institutional arrangements, and that would in its design serve to foster improved access and efficient, cost-effective, transparent, accountable, and equitable utilisation of climate finance by countries in Africa.
- December 10, 2012 -
In contrast to Germany, environmental questions are not yet a voting issue in South Africa. However, providing greater access to energy is a high priority. What can a developing country take away from Germany’s experiences? What are the chances of South Africa taking a leading role in Africa’s Energiewende?
By Emily Tylermore»
Climate change is increasingly recognized as a developmental challenge in Africa, however, development planning in many African countries is still done in silos, and without due consideration of climate change. Two case studies from Namibia and Tanzania provide an analysis of the institutional, financial and political barriers to the integration of climate change in development.
- June 5, 2012 -
The G20’s commitment to conventional solutions obscures the possibility of other alternatives. Even though the alternatives present challenges in terms of replication, cost, and scale, the G20 summit in Mexico in June 2012 should re-cast the criteria for selecting and financing energy projects to highlight modular, renewable energy solutions.
By Saliem Fakirmore»
- To address the myths of nuclear power, the Heinrich Böll Foundation has commissioned renowned international nuclear experts to deliver reports that provide the public with an overview of current facts and nuclear-critical know-how. more»
- Southern Africa prepares to adapt to climate change. Three studies - on South Africa, Botswana and Zimbabwe - provide information on policies, institutions and actors addressing adaptation issues and identify governance challenges in climate change adaptation in the region. more»
- Our four Africa offices commissioned studies to evaluate the state of preparedness for climate change adaptation in seven African countries. What are the impacts of and vulnerabilities to climate change in Africa? To what extent do existing adaptation policies, strategies and plans respond to the vulnerabilities identified? By Masego Madzwamusemore»
- The year 2010 offered mixed results concerning global climate policy, with serious setbacks as well as some small victories. This publication offers regional analysis of climate policy in 2010 and the UN climate conference in Cancun (COP 16). more»
- This dossier sheds light on the current state of energy policy in South Africa. It examines three inter-related issues: the possibility of a low-carbon future, the great energy policy disconnect within government, and the prospects for renewable energy in South Africa. more»
- Significant attention has been given to improving our understanding of the real and imminent impacts of climate change. It is accepted that rising temperatures, changes in rainfall patterns, extreme weather events, changes in sea levels and changes in biodiversity will have significant consequences on the world economy, rural livelihoods and development in general. Africa in particular will be hardest hit by climate change yet its adaptive capacity remains low. By Masego Madzwamusemore»
- April 15, 2010 - After the bewildering disappointment of the United Nations climate summit held in Copenhagen last December, civil society must set its eyes on the road ahead and ask “where to from here?” as the climate crisis continues apace. Leonie Joubert sat in on a round-table discussion held in Cape Town in the aftermath of the summit. more»
- Although various studies have focused on climate change impacts and adaptation opportunities in Africa, few have focused on the household level and in particular on gender differentiated impacts of climate change. This study, commissioned by Heinrich Böll Stiftung, provides an analysis and summary of the findings of eight case studies carried out in four southern African countries. Furthermore, the study aims to identify various policies, programmes and activities that could address these issues. more»
- From 7 to 18 December the UN climate change conference 2009 took place. With this Dossier the Heinrich Böll Foundation aimed to provide accessible analysis from a South African perspective and a wider range of background information on the road to Copenhagen. more»
- The grave financial and economic crisis that broke into full view in the fall of 2008 has dominated not only headlines but also government and business deliberations. Bailout efforts and stimulus packages of unprecedented scope have taken center stage, as attempts to stave off the specter of a second Great Depression unfold. In sharp contrast with the laissez-faire attitude of the past three decades, the question now is not whether government can play a useful and central role, but what the specifics of government action should be. more»
- Leonie Joubert, a renowned journalist and photographer, reports on the impact of climate change in South Africa. Her essay is accompanied by striking photographs of South Africa’s vulnerable landscapes and of the people depending on them for their livelihoods. more»
- Africa speaks up on Climate Change is an appeal about the threat climate change poses to Africa. Immediate political action is needed. The film Hotspot Africa shows how severe the problems really are. more»
November 4, 2011 -
This research analyses how militia bases in the countryside of Zimbabwe have been used as an instrument of terror and intimidation, and identifies possible interventions to avoid a repetition of widespread human rights abuses during forthcoming elections.
- May 20, 2010 - Violence against foreigners and violence against women are two forms of violence that are viewed with horror by the general public and outside world but are, in fact, normalised ways in which South African society interacts with minority and vulnerable groups. The double jeopardy that faces foreign women is just that: they are at the intersection of these two groups that are so vulnerable to exploitation, abuse and violence. By Romi Sigsworthmore»
- May 20, 2010 - While xenophobia may seem far removed from racial tensions, poverty, and public protest, how we understand and address these concerns is inseparable from the bias and violence against outsiders. At the root of these tensions is a discourse of citizenship and transformation that insists – often implicitly – on the categorization of people into a relatively homogenous, entitled majority and those for whom, by virtue of their experience, origins, or occupation, political recognition comes only by demonstrating their utility to a true and deserving political community. By Loren Landaumore»
- February 5, 2010 - In this publication, the Heinrich Böll Foundation presents some of its experiences, both setbacks and successes. It is just a small sample of HBS' work all over the world. HBS is very much aware that its political and financial contributions are often only part of a larger network; yet its work does make a difference – for more gender justice. more»
- August 6, 2009 - The need to develop guidelines on reporting under the Women’s Protocol is urgent. In developing these guidelines, lessons from the exiting guidelines should be incorporated. Emphasis should be placed on a workable set of guidelines that do not overburden states, and take into account their existing reporting obligations. more»
- After the democratisation of South Africa in 1994, the influx of migrants from other African countries increased dramatically. Despite reconciliation initiatives, old patterns of racism (deeply rooted in the country’s apartheid past) combined with new forms of discrimination, such as xenophobia, have played out through the country’s period of political transition. By Romi Sigsworth, Collet Ngwane and Angelica Pinomore»
- Gender Mainstreaming needs to be taken more seriously and a topic for society as a whole. Besides legal frameworks, we need bottom-up policies, a strengthening of initiatives that target equality and more men on board to fundamentally change the relationship between the genders. By Barbara Unmüßigmore»
- The intention of this report is to discuss the links between xenophobic attitudes, gender and male violence by focusing on discussions held with both South African and migrant women and men living in Du Noon, Cape Town. By Nadia Sangermore»
April 16, 2010 - South African companies are increasingly looking for investment opportunities in the wider SADC region in a bid to benefit from favourable international markets for minerals, in competition with western and Asian companies. These investments have social and environmental impacts on people working in, and living around, mines. This book assesses South African mining and gas companies corporate governance and social responsibilities in five SADC countries. more»
- February 10, 2010 - This new publication presents the critical themes that informed the debates during the conference ‘Climate Change, Resources, Migration: Old and New Sources of Conflict in Africa?’ hosted by the Heinrich Böll Foundation on the 2nd and 3rd of August 2009 in Cape Town. The conference, while analysing the current state of Africa’s peace and security architecture, focused on the structural root causes of conflict in Africa and on the question of whether the security framework in place offers appropriate answers to deal with these challenges. more»
- January 15, 2010 - Tanzania’s mining sector has grown rapidly in recent years. This study provides background information on the industry, its impacts, and the legal and political environment of its operation. It argues for a joint effort of all stakeholders to overcome typical challenges of the extractive resource industry in Africa, in order to make Tanzania the “best performer in her class”. more»
- Eni, formerly the Italian state oil company, is undertaking a new multi-billion dollar investment in Congo in developing tar sands, oil palm for food and bio-diesel and gas-fuelled electricity. Such investments have been heavily criticized for causing social and environmental damage, both locally and globally. The actual study gives background information about the plans. more»
- South Africa’s National Credit Act has attracted the attention of policymakers worldwide who are keen to prevent reckless lending practices. The NCR is already assisting neighbouring Namibia to develop similar legislation.By David Marrsmore»
- To Have and Have Not – Resource Governance in the 21st Century incorporates cross-sectional and cross-regional perspectives. As a Green political foundation we promote a South-South dialogue and aspire to strengthen international networks. The memorandum attempts to turn such dialogues into a policy manifesto that – taking into account the different perspectives and approaches – tries to agree upon common principles and actions for fair, just, and ecological resource politics. more»
- Today, environmental degradation, social conflict and social strife, poverty, HIV/AIDS, etc. – all of them resulting from or linked to bad governance – have become more of a security concern than the traditional military antagonisms that pitted nations against each other. The main threats to international peace and security are rooted in situations within states rather than between states, and this is especially prevalent in the African context. more»