Page 12 - Faculty of Commerce

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UCT Research Report '11
Steyn and E.M. Villeneuva (eds), Proceedings of ICT for
development: people, policy and practice - IDIA2011
Conference Proceedings, 26-28 October 2011, Lima,
Peru. South Africa: School of Information Technology,
Monash South Africa. ISBN 978-0-620-51717-1.
Vergeer, J., Chigona, W.M.G. and Metfula, A. 2011. A
media discourse of broadband policy in a developing
country context. In M. Nüttgens, A. Gadatsch, K. Kautz,
I. Schirmer and N. Blinn (eds), Proceedings - IFIP WG
8.6 International Working Conference, 22-24 September
2011, Hamburg, Germany. Germany: Springer Heidelberg
Dordrecht. ISBN 978-3-642-24147-5.
School of Economics
Director: Associate Professor Corne
van Walbeek
Departmental Profile
The School of Economics is located in two faculties,
namely, the Faculty of Commerce (which is also its
administrative home) and the Faculty of Humanities. In
March 2011 the School of Economics moved into a newly-
constructed building on Middle Campus. While the move
was initially disruptive, the new facility helps the School
in attracting good students and eminent academics from
around the world.
The School currently has more than 3000 undergraduate
students. In 2011 the School had 145 newly registered
Honours students (69 in Economics and 76 in Financial
Management and Portfolio Management), 42 registered
Masters students, and 51 registered PhD students.
Since 2003, in addition to the traditional PhD by thesis
programme, the School has a coursework-and-thesis
based collaborative PhD programme with seven other
universities on the continent. This four-year collaborative
programme consists of 18-24 months of core and applied
coursework, followed by a standard dissertation. Between
2003 and 2011 this programme has attracted 61 students,
nearly all from African countries. In 2011 the School
graduated a total of 8 PhD students, of which 4 were from
the collaborative programme.
Since inception of the collaborative programme in 2003
a substantial number of PhD students in this programme
have been funded by the African Economic Research
Consortium (AERC). The AERC typically funded 3-5
students per year, but in 2011 this was increased to
eleven and in 2012 to 15 students of which 11 took up
their places. Furthermore, Carnegie Corporation provided
two-year scholarships to another 12 PhD students in
2011. The scholarships from Carnegie Corporation are
also tenable for students in the traditional PhD by thesis
programme. The growth in the PhD enrolment means that
the School can expect a sharp increase in PhD graduates
in three or four years’ time.
Current research activity, with an emphasis on policy
related research, is spread across a number of fields,
including: development economics; international
economics; international finance; financial theory; growth
theory and empirics; labour economics; poverty and
inequality; health economics; education; environmental
economics; and political economy.
The School of Economics hosts a number of research
units. These are the Aids and Society Research Unit
(ASRU), the Development Policy Research Unit (DPRU),
the Environmental-Economics Policy Research Unit
(EPRU) and the Southern Africa Labour and Development
Research Unit (SALDRU). Two new research units,
not yet accredited during 2011 but accredited as of
2012 are: Research Unit in Behavioural Economics
and Neuroeconomics (RUBEN) and Policy Research on
International Services and Manufacturing (PRISM).
Aids and Society Research Unit (ASRU)
ASRU is an inter-disciplinary unit that conducts quantitative
and qualitative social science research on various aspects
of AIDS policy and the socio-economic dimensions of living
with HIV. Recent research by students and researchers
in ASRU has focussed on medical male circumcision,
AIDS conspiracy beliefs (and how they are contested),
sexual behaviour, the international AIDS response, HIV
and reproductive rights, HIV and gender, the modelling
of HIV in Southern Africa, representations of AIDS in
the media, the effect of antiretroviral treatment on labour
market behaviour and household composition, AIDS
treatment literacy, and how to promote evidence-based
medicine whilst acknowledging the continued importance
of traditional healing belief systems. ASRU continues
to engage with community organisations and NGOs
outside of the university. In 2011 ASRU engaged in an
action research project with Kheth’Impilo (an NGO which
has partnered with South African government to provide
antiretroviral treatment in four provinces). Researchers
and students in ASRU helped Keth’Impilo develop training
materials - including the development of a manual for the
use of Body Mapping techniques.
Environmental-Economics Policy Research Unit
The Environmental-Economics Policy ResearchUnit (EPRU)
is a research group which seeks to enhance environmental
policy-making in South Africa through rigorous policy
research and extension in order to attain sustainable
development and poverty reduction. EPRU is funded