Transforming Universities in South Africa

Pathways to Higher Education Reform


The idea of transformation in higher education underpins all policy documents, academic literature and on-going debates in South Africa. Transforming Universities in South Africa: Pathways to Higher Education Reform responds to the pressing need to comprehensively review the post-apartheid experience and assess where South Africa’s higher education stands across the continent and globally, particularly within the country’s efforts to overcome decades of socio-economic imbalances. It addresses the question of whether South Africa’s transformation strategy from apartheid to democracy was simply a symbolic new flag-raising and new anthem singing exercise reflecting a transition akin to those limited decolonization projects elsewhere in the world, or whether something more fundamental was possible and was achieved with political and policy implications for other countries in Africa and globally. This volume's ultimate purpose is to provide a basis for imagining new futures in which South Africa higher education in the context of Africa and the global world takes centre stage.

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Ihron Rensburg, Ph.D. (1996), Stanford University (USA), is former Vice-Chancellor of the University of Johannesburg (2006–2017). He is senior advisor to the principal, visiting professor at Kings College London, and honorary professor at Nelson Mandela University. He has published in books and scholarly journals.
Shireen Motala is Senior Director of the Postgraduate School, Professor in the Faculty of Education, at the University of Johannesburg, and has recently been appointed as the SARCHI Chair: Teaching and Learning by the National Research Foundation. She has published in books and scholarly journals.
Michael Cross is founder and Director of the Ali Mazrui Centre for Higher Education Studies at the University of Johannesburg. He is also a co-founder and co-editor of the book series on Higher Education. He has published books and scholarly journals.
List of Figures and Tables
Notes on Contributors

1 Introduction
Michael Cross and Shireen Motala
2 Transformation of Higher Education in South Africa, 1995–2016: Current Limitations and Future Possibilities
Ihron Rensburg
3 Transformation Revisited: Twenty Years of Higher Education Policy in South Africa
Lis Lange
4 Higher Education Transformation, Inequality and Educational Leadership-In-Becoming
Nuraan Davids and Yusef Waghid
5 Global Africa: Nelson Mandela and the Meaning of Decolonising Knowledge and Universities – Problems and Opportunities
Ihron Rensburg
6 Decolonising Universities in South Africa: Backtracking and Revisiting the Debate
Michael Cross
7 The Learning Challenge in South African Higher Education
Crain Soudien
8 Changing the Doctoral Education Curriculum: A Comparative Study of Drama and Performance Studies and Chemical Engineering
Thiruveni Moodley and Michael Anthony Samuel
9 South Africa’s Opportunity: Crafting a Differentiated Higher Education System
Ihron Rensburg
10 General Trends and Impact of the Internationalisation of Higher Education in South Africa
Shireen Motala and Solomon Arulraj David
11 Measuring Equity of Access to Higher Education in South Africa: Considerations and Possibilities
Kirti Menon
12 Conclusion
Ihron Rensburg and Shireen Motala

Policy makers, researchers, academic staff, students and other stakeholders with interest in higher education reform in Africa and the developing world, donors and funding agencies, the public in general.