South Africa is my field-site and adoptive home of 15 years. Since my work is about the national social welfare program, I make my research immediately available to those it most effects. I have done so through expert testimony, policy advice, investigative journalism, and documentary film-making. My current (and past) public projects include:
This work is in partnership with the Black Sash, Wanga Zembe (Medical Research Council) and Engenas Senona (Department of Social Development). We have interviewed over 100 social grantees and paralegal fieldworkers to understand the challenges of delivering social welfare during a global health crisis. We are using this research to advocate for Universal Basic Income.
Net1's Payment System
Through collaborations with the Black Sash, I investigated the material workings of Net1's digital payment infrastructure. The Black Sash legal team used the evidence gathered to litigate against predatory financial practices at the Constitutional Court, bringing grant payment from private to public control.
Data and Digitisation
This is a new project in partnership with Open Secrets! It is hush-hush at the moment! I will post publications by the end of the year.
This work is in partnership with the Black Sash, Deborah James (London School of Economics), and David Neves (University of the Western Cape). We explored the proliferation of payday loans to social grantees under the Post Office payment regime. We are using the evidence gathered to push for changes to the National Credit Act.
Land and Housing
Before graduate school, my research focused on land and housing delivery with the Development Action Group and Shack Dwellers International. With these organisations, I supported social movements of Black women demanding secure, dignified housing in the city.