The Department of Higher Education and Training (DHET) expects local universities to employ at least 125 new academics by the end of the year, 80% of whom must be black and/or female.
The department initially announced its plans when it introduced its New Generation of Academics Programme, as part of the department’s transformation strategy, in May.
Only a handful of academics have applied for the relevant posts, since the announcement.
According to the DHET, a portion of the academics’ salaries will be subsidised by the state. The government will also fund their academic development over a period of six years.
CapeTalk’s Africa Melane standing in for John Maytham spoke to Prof. Xolela Mangcu, Associate Professor of Sociology at UCT:
There’s institutional cultural problem in South Africa with our universities. They operate like families, almost like a feudal system so they make it very difficult especially if you are a black person— Prof. Xolela Mangcu, Associate Professor of Sociology at UCT
Mangcu says the department should start at a second year level to get young people interested in the work of the academy.
Listen to the full conversation on The John Maytham Show with Africa Melane standing in: