Prof Derick Blaauw attended the Professorial Inauguration of Prof Fiona Tregenna of the Department of Economics and Econometrics at the University of Johannesburg on the 20th of May. Prof Tregenna’s lecture was entitled: “Should we care about deindustrialisation?” Prof Tregenna’s address focussed on the complexities of deindustrialisation and on some of the aspects she views as important when evaluating the likely effects of deindustrialisation on growth. Prof Tregenna is one of only a few economists in South Africa that have ever been awarded a B-rating from the NRF. Her primary area of research is structural and sectorial changes of economies, with a special focus on deindustrialisation.
We have graduation ceremonies on campus this week and Magister Commercii, Master of Commerce, students graduated this morning. We are proud to list the students and the topics of their thesis.
- Ilandi Bezuidenhout – The men by the side of the road: Determinants of the wages of day labourers.
- Du Toit Niemand – Analysing the spatial persistence of population and wealth during Apartheid.
- Mia van der Linde – An analysis of the polarisation of the South African labour market.
- Christelle Viljoen – An analysis of the economic geography of labour market outcomes in South Africa.
In Risk Management:
- Joubert de Villiers – The relationship between exchange rate volatility and portfolio inflow in South Africa.
- Hestia Stoffberg – Assessing the suitability of regulatory asset correlations applied to South African loan losses.
In International Trade:
- Chrislemien Groenewald – Analysing the effectiveness of trade facilitation in South Africa.
- Francois van Heerden – Identifying employment-intensive export sectors in South Africa’s services industry.
Congratulations to the students and supervisors.
Prof. Ewert Kleynhans attended the 2nd Annual International Conference on Business, Law and Economics, in Athens in Greece during the week of 4 May 2015 organised by the Athens Institute for Education and Research (ATINER). He presented a paper with the title: “Elements of industrial success and spillovers”, which attracted much interest, comments, advice and questions.
His paper investigated the factors that determine the international competitiveness of firms and industries in South Africa starting from a micro-economic level. The newest literature is studied followed by empirical studies on factors that ensure longevity in the market and enhancement of sales by films. Emphasis was placed on the various element of the South African industrial competitive platform. The focus was on the role that technological and knowledge play in the enhancement of competitiveness, efficiency and economic success. What makes this study unique is that it included the interaction of various factors on each other and also acknowledges that such spillovers might also harm the competitiveness of firms and industries.
The findings of this research will be published in the next edition of the international journal: Studia Oeconomica
Extraordinary Professor Peet Strydom annually hosts a one-day conference and last week Friday saw the 17th Ruiterbosch event held near Mosselbay.
The aim of the conference is to bring together academics, practitioners and policymakers for an off-the-record and no-holds-barred discussion of the issues facing the South African economy. Prof Krugell of the School of Economics and Prof Viviers of TRADE was there.
This year the topics of discussion included:
- Global value chains and the implications that they hold for exports and investment,
- Piketty’s analysis of inequality – Prof Peet presented a paper with his own modified model and the implications for South Africa,
- Foreign direct investment in Africa, specifically by SA firms, and
- The rise and fall of Eskom.