A Crisis of Leadership – An expert's lecture
The University of Pretoria’s Expert Lecture Series provides a public platform for researchers of the University of Pretoria to engage with a general audience regarding significant developments in their fields of expertise that are likely to have an impact in the future.
In this lecture 'A Crisis of Leadership' delivered on 5 March 2014, Prof Schoeman reflects on the many gains made by South Africa – domestically and internationally – over the past two decades, and on the constraints and challenges facing the country at the dawn of its third decade of democracy. Using the lens of leadership and power contestation, she explores the reasons for an increasing sense of crisis permeating society. She argues that many of the ills facing South Africa, such as corruption, the weakening of state institutions and the deepening of poverty and inequality, are the consequences of an unresolved class struggle which, in turn, will continue to rage ever more stridently owing to the lack of strong, visionary, hegemonic leadership. In conclusion Prof Schoeman situates the tertiary sector within this ongoing struggle and makes some suggestions as to how the University of Pretoria, as part of this landscape, can intervene to provide pockets of leadership that could assist in a resolution of the crisis.
Prof Maxi Schoeman holds a PhD from the University of Wales (Aberystwyth). She joined the University of Pretoria in 2000 as professor and head of the Department of Political Sciences and currently also serves as chair of the Core Social Sciences cluster in the Faculty of Humanities. She is a member of the University Council and an adjunct professor in the School for Public Policy at George Mason University in the United States. She held research fellowships with Cambridge University (1995/96), the Copenhagen Peace Research Institute (2001), the Dag Hammarskjöld Foundation (2009) and the Nordic Africa Institute (2009). She was recently awarded the 2014 Claude Ake Visiting Chair at the University of Uppsala, a position that she will take up in August this year. She has presented guest lectures and seminars at, amongst others, the Universities of Copenhagen, Aalborg, Konstanz, Indiana and Beijing. She maintains close research ties with the African Leadership Centre in Nairobi and the Kofi Annan International Peacekeeping Training Centre in Accra. She is a member of the Advisory Board of the African Peace Network of the Social Sciences Research Council in New York and serves on the editorial boards of several local and international journals in the field of international relations. University of Pretoria