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Southern Youth: Taking stock, navigating forward

18 June 2013
12:15 - 14:00

Human Sciences Research Council invitation to a Youth Day Seminar

Date: 18 June 2013

Time: 12:15 to 14:00

Speaker: Prof Sharlene Swartz, Research  Director, Human and Social Development Group, HSRC

Responses by:
Dr Ernest Khalema, Senior Research Specialist, HSD
Prof Monde Makiwane, Chief Research Specialist, HSD


In the context of Youth Month Prof Sharlene Swartz will review the state and status of young people living in South Africa and more broadly in the global South. Drawing from her new book Youth citizenship and the politics of belonging (2013) she presents a critique of global North youth development theories and approaches, showing how these are insufficient to address the contemporary realities of Southern Youth who contend in different ways to their global North counterparts with poverty, culture, educational quality, unemployment, food security, violence, and work transitions to name a few. She then introduces a new conceptual framework, that of ‘navigational capacities’, to provide nuanced vocabulary to addresses complexity in Southern Youth experiences, with implications for interventions and policy.

Panelists will respond highlighting Southern Youth’s pathways and mobilities (Dr Ernest Khalema) and activism and solidarity (Prof Monde Makiwane).

Sharlene Swartz is a research director at the HSRC, and an adjunct Associate Professor of Sociology at the University of Cape Town, South Africa. She is the author or co-author of Ikasi: the moral ecology of South Africa’s township youth (2009); Teenage Tata: Voices of Young Fathers in South Africa (2009); Moral education in sub-Saharan Africa: Culture, economics, conflict and AIDS (2011),  Old Enough to Know: Consulting children about sex and AIDS education in Africa (2012); and Youth citizenship and the politics of belonging (2013).

Kindly RSVP by 12 June 2013

This seminar may be attended via video conference in Pretoria, Cape Town and KwaZulu-Natal. Details are indicated below.

Cape Town : HSRC, 12th Floor, Plein Park Building (Opposite Revenue Office), Plein Street, Cape Town. Contact Jean Witten, Tel (021) 4668004, Fax (021) 461 0299, or

Durban :  First floor HSRC board room, 750 Francois Road, Ntuthuko Junction, Pods 5 and 6, Cato Manor, Contact Ridhwaan Khan, Tel (031) 242 5400, cell: 083 788 2786 or,

Pretoria : HSRC Video Conference, 1st floor HSRC Library Human Sciences Research Council, 134 Pretorius Street, Pretoria. Arlene Grossberg, Tel: (012) 302 2811, e-mail: