Dr George Masimba conducted his PhD research on slum upgrading in Harare, Zimbabwe. Applying the right to the city, modernist planning, inclusive urbanism, the Slum Dwellers International model and the Social Tenure Domain model the thesis posits that incrementalism, densification, co-production and the in-situ process have been defining features of slum upgrading. Furthermore, social movements’ tactics such as community-led enumerations, community savings, and policy-uploading processes rooted in institutionalised collaborations have contributed to the success of slum upgrading.
Mr Brian Shawa undertook his Masters research on civil society and development effectiveness in South Africa. He examined how Non-Governmental Development Organisations are organised to contribute to international development effectiveness. The study draws on two theoretical lenses, the Theory of Change and the Coordination Theory, as well as Gramsci’s notions of civil society. Among his findings are that while South African Non-Governmental Development Organisations have a strong understanding of the notion of development in their own contexts, they lack awareness and knowledge of the notion of development effectiveness as expressed in the international development discourse.
Mr Thokozani Magwaza’s Masters study focused on service delivery protests in Mpofana municipality, KwaZulu-Natal. It found that there is growing social distance between citizens and their representatives, that public participation mechanisms are not working and that protests are a reaction to these issues.
Mr Sthembiso Zwane’s Masters research examined the socio-economic impact of the Child Support Grant on young, unemployed mothers in Durban. It found that the majority of the sampled households would suffer severely without the grant as an additional financial resource. His study showed that the grant contributes to food security, education, transport, and stokvel and funeral contributions.
Mr Nduduzo Majozi, who worked in the CCS Cato Manor project conducted his Masters research on housing service delivery in Cato Manor’s formal areas and informal settlements. The study identified a number of challenges in housing delivery, including shack-landlordism; politicisation of housing delivery; the quality of housing and a lack of basic services. It suggests that government’s housing policies are too stringent and inflexible to accommodate the distinctive social needs of families within these communities.