Public Positions: The Implications of Anglo's Fall

Tuesday, 12 April, 2016 - 17:30

WISER, the Department of Politics and History Workshop invite you to join us for a panel discussion in the series of Public Positions on History and Politics:

A video recording of this event is available below.


Keith Breckenridge, WISER


  • Tim Cohen (Editor, Business Day)
  • Bobby Godsell (former CEO, Anglo-Gold)
  • Eddie Majadibodu (formerly NUM)
  • Lumkile Mondi (Economics, Wits)
  • Ian Robinson (Phd, Mining Engineering)

Brief:   South Africans are accustomed to thinking about institutional decline as something associated with public bureaucracy and the large corporations controlled by the state.  The dramatic collapse over the last ten years of the organisational and economic capacity of the Anglo American Corporation disturbs some of the thinking behind those assumptions.  For much of the 20th century Anglo was the dominant institution of Southern African economic life, shaping states, industrial relations, infrastructure, philanthropy and much of the cultural life of the region (not least, as the constant patron of liberal politics).  Yet, little of that original corporation now remains.  Why has this decline happened?  What does it reveal about the post-apartheid transition? And, importantly, what does it imply for the future of South African institutions?

In this Public Positions event we will consider these problems.  A panel composed of Tim Cohen (editor, Business Day), Lumkile Mondi (Economics, Wits),  Eddie Majadibodu (formerly National Union of Mineworkers) will engage with a short paper by Ian Robinson and David Yudelman.  The panel will be chaired by Keith Breckenridge (WISER).

Public Positions on History and Politics is a project of the Department of Political Studies, History Workshop and WiSER at the University of the Witwatersrand intended to enrich public debate about Social Justice in South Africa.  The project was initiated with support from the Raith Foundation.

‚ÄčRefreshments will be served and we ask those who plan to attend to RSVP to Najibha Deshmukh (

Live streaming and a Twitter feed from this event will be available from

Venue: WISER Seminar Room, on the 6th Floor of the Richard Ward Building (in the southern wing of the building). The Richard Ward Building is immediately to the East of Senate House, and Parking is available in Senate House (off Jorissen Street) after 3pm.