Staff and post-grad students of the School do research on a wide range of topics. The topics that we are interested in include:
- Export opportunities and export promotion:
This line of work is carried out by the TRADE research focus area under Prof Wilma Viviers. Forming the core of TRADE’s work is a model that is used to identify export opportunities. The model’s filtering system starts with all possible combinations of products and countries, and thereafter a number of filters are used to identify realistic export opportunities. Some of the factors that are included in the filtering process are: commercial and political risks, macro-economic indicators, size of the market, market concentration and competition, as well as barriers to trade. The model has been used to inform export promotion decisions at national and provincial level.
Along with the formal model, other related topics are being explored by TRADE researchers, such as barriers to internationalisation, the location of exporters, transport costs and exports of services.
- Foreign direct investment:
As a complement to the research on trade work is being done by a team that is interested in investment, specifically foreign direct investment into Africa. The importance of the BRIC countries’ investment in Africa and the role of the oil sector are among the key focus areas of this team.
- Tourism economics:
The tourism sector is an important part of the South African economy and the School’s economists have made some important research contributions to this field, collaborating in particular with colleagues from the TREES research unit (Tourism Research in Economics, Environs and Society). Here the research focus is on the economic impact of tourism, the forecasting of tourism demand and the many dimensions of green tourism.
- Financial markets and derivative instruments:
The risk management / finance group conduct research into exchange rates, bank risk management and agricultural derivative instruments.
Last, but not the least, there are also colleagues who are interested in issues pertaining to manufacturing, innovation and economic geography.
Learn more about our research by reading the weekly Research posts. Recent posts were: