News & events


Gender, poverty and inequality

06 August 2019
12:30 - 14:00

Date: 6 August 2019
Time:  12h30  – 14:00
Venues in Pretoria, Durban and Cape Town (Videoconferencing facilities: see below)

Dr Catherine Ndinda, Human and Social Development (HSD) Cape Town
Dr Benita Moolman, Global Citizenship Programme, Centre for Innovation in Learning and Teaching (CILT), UCT
Dr Konosoang Sobane, Social Policy, Knowledge Mobilisation, and Impact Assessment (SoKIA)
Dr Sikhulumile Sinyolo, Economic Performance and Development (EPD), HSRC
Dr Ingrid Lynch, Human and Social Development (HSD), HSRC


South Africa has much to celebrate in terms of women’s advancement since the transition to democracy in 1994. For the first time, gender equality was inscribed as an independent clause in the Constitution (1996). The Constitutional proclamation was followed by legislative measures such as affirmative action across all sectors, the creation of the Gender Commission and the proliferation of non-governmental organisations focused on tackling gender inequality in the country. Women have indeed benefitted from the Constitutional and legislative measures that have been implemented to address their marginalisation. Yet, women are not a homogenous group and their heterogeneity has implications for the theoretical and conceptual frameworks deployed in understanding their place in society. In articulating views on women, there is need to take cognisance of the differences among them in terms of race, class, ethnicity and sexual orientation among other variables. Reports on the status of women must compel us to constantly interrogate the finer detail and ask the fundamental question of ‘which women’?

Despite the strides made in the advancement of women, challenges abound. Gender-based violence persists, sexual harassment and bullying in the workplace are seldom reported, and various strategies continue to be devised and deployed to silence women’s voices both in the public and private spheres. In the growing crisis of youth unemployment an important question relates to the place of women in the broader economy. Most contentious are income inequalities between men and women of similar human capital endowment. Inequalities are compounded by the intersection of gender and race. The multiplicity of issues confronting women in South Africa are complex and require nuanced and sophisticated approaches for robust and sustainable solutions.

The purpose of this seminar is two-fold. One, we seek to explore and explicate the status of women in South Africa. Secondly, we aim to shed light on the differences among women and to argue that not a singular, but a range of approaches are required to tackle the persistent poverty and inequality that continues to relegate women on the margins of society.

Kindly RSVP by 5 August 2019

Pretoria: HSRC Video Conference Room, 1st  floor HSRC Library, 134 Pretorius Street, Pretoria.
Contact Arlene Grossberg  | T: (012) 302 2811  | E:
Cape Town: HSRC Video Conference Room, Merchant House 116-118 Buitengracht Street, Cape Town.
Contact Shouneez Khan| T: (021) 466 7948 | E:
Durban: HSRC Video Conference Room, The Atrium, 5th Floor, 430 Peter Mokaba Ridge, Berea, 4001.
Contact Ridhwaan Khan  | T: (031) 242 5400  | C: 083 788 2786  | E:  or Wiseman Mbambo |  E:

The HSRC seminar series is funded by the Department of Science and Technology (DST). The views and opinions expressed therein as well as findings and statements of the seminar series do not necessarily represent the views of the DST

Vidyo Link: