Informed by the discussions at an international conference jointly organised by the German Development Institute, the Heinrich Böll Foundation and Stanford University on “Emerging Power or Fading Star? South Africa’s Role on the Continent and Beyond”, held 12–14 July 2016 in Cape Town, the articles gathered in this edition of Perspectives shed light on some of the nuances and challenges that define South Africa’s place in the world today.
This paper discusses the ways in which community protocols can be an effective tool for communities to respond to extractive industry projects in their area. It provides an overview of what has taken place over the last three years in four pilot community protocol processes and captures lessons that can be applied to future processes.
Activists, non-governmental organisations (NGOs) and social movements across the world are facing verbal hostility from politicians, new laws and regulations that curtail their ability to operate, and outright violence. Africa is no exception.
When you write about Africa, make sure to always include sad and starving characters, advises Kenyan author Binyavanga Wainana in his famously ironic essay “How to write about Africa”, which takes aim at Western prejudices. In the same way that everyday laughter has been excluded from all-too-familiar depictions of the continent, African humour and satire as a form of social and political engagement remains underexplored.
With this edition of Perspectives, the Heinrich Böll Foundation explores some of the approaches and instruments that communities and their NGO partners have developed to create room for community-centred stakeholder participation, and to champion community interests and rights.
On the afternoon of Wednesday, 21 October, xenophobic attacks broke out in Grahamstown. Foreign nationals as well as South African citizens from other parts of the country were attacked, and their shops looted. The Unemployed People's Movement warned police of rising tensions in the community, and convened a community meeting on October 12 to discuss matters with the police.