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The Society, Work and Politics Institute (SWOP) is one of the University of the Witwatersrand’s most enduring research entities. Our work is shaped by the overarching aim of producing knowledge to help understand ‘the making and unmaking of social order’, with a particular focus on disadvantaged communities and the problems they face, as well as collective efforts to effect change.

Our research is shared through publications (both academic and more popular forms of writing), teaching, seminar programmes and conferences, as well as engagement in and with processes of policy formulation, legal processes and other more activist-driven interventions. It is our intellectual endeavour to contribute to different forms of theorising, theory-building and critique from our particular vantage point in ‘the global south’.

Current research projects are organised in the following clusters:

Land, Labour, Life
Violent States, States of Violence
A Just Transition from Coal
Popular Politics

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