2030LOOK ABOVE THE TREES - INDLULAMITHI - Scenarios 2030
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THREE SCENARIOS FOR SOUTH AFRICA IN 2030 / 3 CONTENTS Introduction 2 Three Scenarios for South Africa 6 Key Driving Forces 9 The World in 2030 13 Three Futures for South Africa 16 iSbhujwa – An Enclave Bourgeois Nation 18 Nayi le Walk – A Nation in Step with Itself 26 Gwara Gwara – A Floundering False Dawn 36 Indlulamithi Leadership Group 44 Indlulamithi Steering Committee 45 Researchers 46 Core Participants and Interviewees 47 Sponsors and Supporters 48
2 / INDLULAMITHI SOUTH AFRICA SCENARIOS 2030 INTRODUCTION What would a socially cohesive South Africa look like? And to what degree is this attainable by 2030? Indlulamithi South Africa Scenarios alternative futures more than 2030 is a multi-stakeholder, a decade from today. These research-driven initiative that seeks scenarios aim to focus both leaders to re-invigorate our search, as a from different sectors and people nation, for ways to create a society from all walks of life on the key where all people experience a questions of: sense of belonging and solidarity. A South Africa where all have What would a socially cohesive opportunities to build a better South Africa look like? life. A nation where everyone can And to what degree is this feel they can influence those in attainable by 2030? positions of power. The project is a response to the Indlu-la-mi-thi is the Nguni name reality that, despite great progress for giraffe. It can be directly over the past two decades, South translated as “above the trees”. Africa still faces major challenges. Indlulamithi South Africa Scenarios As a nation we are struggling 2030 encourages big-picture and to deal with a confluence of far-horizons thinking on the future inadequate economic growth, of our country. widespread unemployment, sharp inequalities, low levels of Indlulamithi provides tools – in fixed investment and frail levels of the form of scenarios, research, social capital. Cumulatively, these and facilitated workshops, have a major impact on the living downloadable presentations and standards, safety, education and booklets – to assist us to imagine health of our people. In 2017, a group of representatives WHY 2030? from government, labour, The year was chosen to coincide with the National Development Plan (NDP) academia, business and other timelines as well as those of the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). stakeholders came together to It also covers three national election cycles in South Africa – 2019, 2024 and 2029 – and two local government election cycles – 2021 and 2026. establish Indlulamithi as a quest The dates also cover three Soccer World Cups in 2022 (Qatar), 2026 (Mexico/ for change, centred on a long-term USA/Canada as joint hosts) and 2030 (possibly Uruguay-Argentina-Paraguay strategic view of South Africa. joint bid, or England), three Rugby World Cups in 2019 (Japan), 2023 (France), 2027 (possibly Argentina), and three Summer Olympic Games (Toyko 2020, Indlulamithi seeks to facilitate an Paris 2024 and Los Angeles 2028). open conversation on visions of a
THREE SCENARIOS FOR SOUTH AFRICA IN 2030 / 3 South African society that is socially development methodology, middle class remaining small and integrated and where communities researchers from Mapungubwe vulnerable, the deepening of and institutions aspire to eradicate Institute for Strategic Reflection challenges around the education the social and economic inequalities (MISTRA) began interviewing and health systems, and the that cause exclusion and injustice. a range of people about social continued impact of high CO2 cohesion to explore what its emissions. Negotiations around Indlulamithi seeks to help South dimensions would be – and what land, the impact of continued Africans realise a common purpose are the long-term prospects for urbanisation and the expansion of and shared vision that focuses achieving more social cohesion in social welfare regimes to address on appreciation of our diversity South Africa. ongoing poverty were among the and on solidarity as a means to important variables identified. development and progress. The Indlulamithi project was intent on ensuring the involvement of a Some of the research drew on the The project is led by Professor wide range of interviewees from best recent ‘overview’ research or Somadoda Fikeni and is supported every sector of South Africa and on scholarly research related to by a group of diverse stakeholders across all age groups, making sure the National Development Plan’s from government, labour, civil that those young and unemployed strategies and developmental society and business. were prominent among those pathways. interviewed. This chosen focus – on social cohesion – emerged somewhat surprisingly for those hosting the SOCIAL COHESION initial meeting, who expected Social cohesion refers to the levels of integration and inclusion in communities and in society at large. Often it reflects various measures of participation the gathering of leading or non-involvement in social organisations or institutions. It is shaped by economists, businesspeople, disparities in income and wealth as well as by levels of interpersonal and NGOs, retired jurists, trade intergroup trust. Crime rates and frequencies of violence, as well as overall unionists and public servants wellbeing and the general health of populations are often mirrored in measures of social cohesion. It is often encapsulated via expressions of common values to coalesce mostly around and manifested in senses of nationhood and of shared ethics and ideals. the questions of the future of the economy. But many argued that unless social cohesion in its These interviews and months Early childhood development various dimensions is addressed of intense research yielded 25 and mother-tongue instruction – be it through reconciliation, or variables impacting social cohesion were identified as key areas that addressing inequality, or crafting (see the list of variables on page 9 need to be strengthened to a national identity, or rural/ and 10). ensure that learners succeed in urban divides – our economic later years. Young South Africans development strategies will This research revealed a wide remain vulnerable and exposed flounder. And economic growth range of key issues including the to a variety of assaults, with sexual that doesn’t promote social potentially divisive effect of the abuse generally and human cohesion might also take South 4th industrial revolution on South trafficking identified as particular Africa down a different road. Africa’s continued high rates of dangers. Following a structured scenario unemployment, the South African
4 / INDLULAMITHI SOUTH AFRICA SCENARIOS 2030 These scenarios have tried to build highlighted as a key concern, these dynamics into their design. though there was speculation that Another major concern is that the with improvement in skills from notion of the South African family greater access to tertiary education, needs to be seriously recast. Only and possibly from more rigorous a third of SA’s children are being selection and training for public brought up by two partners. A third service, we could see a steady are raised by their single mothers, improvement in South Africa’s and a further third are orphans, bureaucracy. most times brought up by their grandmothers. Corruption was deliberately separated from consideration Our ‘noisy democracy’ and the of crime, because of the former roles of the Constitution, the thriving in the context of poor Constitutional Court, civil society governance, diverting scarce and the media – notwithstanding the resources into the pockets of a few. spread of fake news – are explored as foundational forces which hold These variables – 25 in all – those in power accountable and were then distilled into three facilitate transparency. Key Driving Forces: Societal Inequality, Resistance, Resentment The ‘incomplete democratic and Reconciliation, (RRR) and transition’, accompanied by Institutional and Leadership continued contestation around Capacity. Please see page 9 reconciliation, will likely see to page 11 for an overview of intensified resentment and these three KDFs and other resistance across race, class and methodological issues. gender lines. At its core will be debates around reconciliation Scenarios are not meant to be into and towards 'what'? Many visions or predictions of the respondents rejected the notion future. Rather the key conversation that South Africans must simply Indlulamithi hopes to encourage reconcile themselves to societal are around questions of whether, structures inherited from colonial if any of these three scenarios and apartheid experiences. come to the fore, do we have the right policies and strategies At the same time, respondents to quickly adapt and move away felt that social solidarity and from the undesirable elements of sacrifice will become more central a given scenario and, at the same to developing and entrenching time, can we move skillfully to take specifically South African values. advantage of and encourage the positive elements of any of the As far as the state and politics is scenarios? concerned, state capacity was
THREE SCENARIOS FOR SOUTH AFRICA IN 2030 / 5 By 2030, greater Johannesburg will become South Africa's first 'megacity' with a population of over 10 million people.
6 / INDLULAMITHI SOUTH AFRICA SCENARIOS 2030 INDLULAMITHI SOUTH AFRICA SCENARIOS 2030 THREE SCENARIOS FOR SOUTH AFRICA What would a socially cohesive South Africa look like? And to what degree is this attainable by 2030? The methodology for Indlulamithi South Africa Scenarios 2030 included formative research, desktop study and extensive interviews with both individual experts and focus groups representative of South Africa’s diversity in terms of gender, age, race and class. The project conducted in-depth qualitative consultations with 150 ‘core participants’, through interviews, focus groups and online discussion platforms. A diverse range of participants was sought.
THREE SCENARIOS FOR SOUTH AFRICA IN 2030 / 7 This primary data was young people were job-seekers; VARIABLES complemented by meta-analysis including many hailing from rural This is a brief summary of the and reviews of existing research, provinces. Many of the focus group variables: the commissioning of specific participants were women. Focus research papers, as well as regular group discussions were modelled 1. We will struggle to absorb briefings and workshops through on our interview questions, but also low-skilled labour in the which findings were validated and included more creative exercises industrial sector but will interrogated. This included: in which young people ‘argued for’ see improved absorption and visually depicted their version in high-skilled and service of the future. sectors. 1. 60 in-depth interviews with sectoral leaders 2. Despite improved labour Interviewers asked participants to 3. Online platform with a protection, job losses, wage reflect on what they perceived as further 70 youth decreases, automation and the key threats to social cohesion In collaboration with AudienceNet casualisation will deepen between now and 2030. They (https://www.audiencenet.co.uk/) the insecurity of workers. also asked what possibilities there Indlulamithi hosted an online 3. Continuing high rates of are for overcoming these threats platform, convening youth from youth unemployment. and what opportunities might we across the country in an online 4. The South African middle leverage and the steps it would class will continue to be a take to start growing levels of social small and volatile group. cohesion now and in the future. 5. Overall inequality will Interviews ranged from 30 minutes remain high. to 2.5 hours and were transcribed 6. Non-communicable and then thematically analysed by chronic illnesses will the research team. Figure 1 Taken from Indlulamithi/Audience Net report become South Africa’s conversation about the future of leading causes of death, social cohesion. Here, youth were 2. Focus groups with job- compounding the HIV/ asked about the challenges they seeking youth AIDS and TB burdens. believe were most pressing in the Recognising 7. South Africa will remain a country, as well as their hopes that the sectoral high emitter of CO² and and fears for the future. Some leaders we had effects of climate change created and posted images to interviewed will not be adequately illustrate their points. had skewed addressed, further our sample widening inequality. towards an older 4. Research conference 8. Land reform will be demographic, Having gathered a significant negotiated through elite we worked with amount of primary data, the competition. Harambee (http:// project sorted this data into 9. Urbanisation will harambee. emerging themes. It became accelerate alongside rural co.za/) to conduct research with clear that there were some poverty. youth focus groups. All of these questions arising from the research
8 / INDLULAMITHI SOUTH AFRICA SCENARIOS 2030 10. Current social welfare regimes will that required further expert opinion. The research conference continue to marginally alleviate poverty. assembled academics and practitioners from a diverse array of 11. We will see steady improvement in early fields to address the identified themes. These included specific childhood development. insights into intergenerational woundedness, the future impacts of climate change, the nature of human trafficking in South Africa, 12. We will see continued success in access mother-tongue education and gender-based violence. to education, while concerns over quality and equity persist. 13. Increased funding for (and access to) The conference also comissioned papers to better understand tertiary education will see greater youth shaping dynamics of South Africa’s economy, global context and absorption into the economy. location, and long-term growth prospects. 14. Civil society will continue to hold the State accountable. During this period, Indlulamithi drew on recent reports and 15. The number of single parents and monographs from organisations working in related fields, female-headed households will increase. including the Mandela Initiative, the Institute for Security Studies and the Vumelana Land Scenarios. 16. While overall crime rate will stablise, particular crimes will escalate with women, children and the poor remaining targeted 5. Distilling the variables: for the purposes of the Indlulamithi disproportionately. South Africa Scenarios 2030 exercise, ‘variables’ refer to a discrete 17. South Africans will wrestle over the set of hypotheses, or intuitions, about the way certain phenomena Constitution. might unfold in the future. These ‘hunches’ are informed by research, and while they seek to capture and understand key 18. Without meaningful reconciliation, trend lines, and dynamics in each field, they are not ‘predictions’ we will see intensified resentment and about the future of the variable. Twenty five variables were resistance. identified. Each of these has a more in-depth rationale and 19. Investigative journalists will continue to explanation which can be accessed at http://sascenarios2030. hold the state to account. co.za/research/. These variables, and the understanding of how 20. State capacity will remain weak but it will they each shape South Africa’s current reality and how they might be more inhibiting of corruption. shape South Africa going forward constitute the ‘DNA’ on which 21. Political leadership will be expressed the Indlulamithi scenarios were built. through increased coalitions and a rising youth voice. 6. Ranking: having formulated the variables and interrogated 22. We will see an increased commitment to their likely range of outcomes and impacts, the project ranked long-term thinking in policymaking. them in terms of their certainty of outcome and their level 23. Regional trade and investment will of likely impact. We asked: how certain can we be about the continue to improve, with regional trajectory of this variable? What impact will this variable, as immigration as a major area of it changes and develops, have on social cohesion? Those contestation. variables identified as both the most uncertain but also the 24. Social solidarity and sacrifice, albeit most impactful were then synthesised into three Key Driving contested, become more central South Forces (KDFs), ie conceptual areas most likely to shape social African values. cohesion in South Africa going forward. These KDFs serve as the 'scaffolding' for the scenario storylines. These are the three 25. South Africans will on balance benefit amalgamated KDFs: Social Inequality; Resistance, Resentment from southern African growth and BRICS and Reconciliation; Institutional and Leadership Capacity. membership.
THREE SCENARIOS FOR SOUTH AFRICA IN 2030 / 9 KEY DRIVING FORCES Those variables identified as both the most uncertain but also the most impactful were synthesised into three Key Driving Forces (KDFs). These are conceptual areas most likely to shape social cohesion in South Africa going forward. These KDFs serve as the scaffolding for the scenario storylines. of the wealth: the biggest long- grandparents. There are important KDF 1 term driver of inequality. Precisely questions to be asked about Social Inequality because of this lack of assets, the social disconnectedness of Indlulamithi participants shared the position of the South African working-age men, many of whom how they understood and middle class is deeply volatile. are unemployed and do not benefit experienced inequality in South from social grants. Africa, which was described in Racial inequality remains both material and immaterial stark with white South Africans Spatial inequality informs terms. There are stark inequalities experiencing better quality of life access to jobs, public space, public in income, access and assets: on all major indices.2 Meanwhile, services and social capital. As the the distributions of each are intra-race inequality is also country becomes increasingly heavily informed by race, gender, increasing. generation and spatial location. While rooted in a long history of colonialism and apartheid, these Women are more likely to be poor inequalities are also propelled than men, and also most affected by more contemporary forces, in times of crisis such as climate including climate change and change, emerging epidemics new technologies. As a Key Driver, and by violent crime. In 2015, the focus on Social Inequality is one in five South African women intended to capture this complex experienced intimate partner web of social, historical and violence.3 Reported rape averages economic features which have, at 109 per day,4 with a conviction and are likely to have, profound rate as low as 8.4% in 2012.5 Like effects on the future of social women, LGBTQI+ communities are cohesion in South Africa. Three more likely to be vulnerable and key considerations informed this marginalised. driver: According to Stats SA, 41% of urbanised, inequality is further Asset-based wealth: the top 10% households are currently entrenched: people live far from of income earners received 60-65% female-headed. This number economic centres with high of total income in South Africa.1 is steadily increasing and a great transport costs. Inequality between 10% of South Africans hold 90–95% many households are headed by rural and urban, as well as between 1 Anna Orthofer (2016) South Africa needs to fix its dangerously wide wealth gap’. https://theconversation.com/south-africa-needs-to-fix-its-dangerously-wide-wealth-gap-66355 2 Institute for Race Relations (2017) Quality of Life Index. 3 South African Demographic and Health Survey 2016 4 SAPS Crime Stats 2016/2017 5 Mercilene Machisa et al (2017). Rape Justice In South Africa: A Retrospective Study Of The Investigation, Prosecution And Adjudication Of Reported Rape Cases From 2012. Pretoria, South Africa. Gender and Health Research Unit, South African Medical Research Council.
10 / INDLULAMITHI SOUTH AFRICA SCENARIOS 2030 different provinces, is deepening. to inadequate early childhood there is marked difference in the Large portions of the country’s rural nutrition. This has stark implications likelihood of employment. and urban dwellers have insecure for longer term physical and tenure and volatile land rights, cognitive development. Stunted University graduates are most likely while land and property ownership children generally perform to find jobs, but in 2018, rates of remains vastly unequal. Meanwhile, more poorly at school and are at unemployment among graduates the wealthier are increasingly likely greater risk of non-communicable are also rising. Indlulamithi to privatise their lives, seeking diseases.7 participants showed acute private health, education, energy awareness about how inequality supply, security, transport and While access to basic education will affect future work, education entertainment and even obtaining is now almost 100%, inequalities in and labour market environments. or renewing passports and licences the quality of education provided online. The aspiration to ‘opt out’ of are stark, determined by income, public institutions, where queues Whichever economic growth path spatial geography and race. In are long and services unreliable, SA finds itself on over the next 12 South Africa of 2018, only around is leaving less and less room for years, the stubborn persistence half of all pupils who start public participation and of inequality will need to be taken Grade 1 complete communion. into account. Economic growth matric. Of all pupils Economic strategies will need to be both growth starting Grade 1, transformative, addressing the root Intergenerational strategies will only about causes of inequality, and inclusive poverty perpetuates need to be both 6% eventually so that more and more South long-term structural transformative, receive addressing the Africans can benefit from such inequality: if parents university root causes of growth. are among the poorest degrees, inequality. quintiles, their children although have a 90% chance of many others do Finally, social (dis) being ‘stuck’ in poverty, ie achieve some post- connectedness was remaining in that quintile of wealth school qualification and skill acknowledged as a significant site all of their lives. Sixty percent of enhancement. of inequality in South Africa. Job- children in South Africa live in seeking youth felt that their biggest households below the upper- barrier to entry was not knowing More than half of South Africa’s bound poverty line.6 the right people. Being networked young people are unemployed is essential for getting a foot in the – the highest level of youth door — with a potential employer, Inequality impacts and is reinforced unemployment globally – and landlord, investor, NGO-provider at a very young age. Poor early having a matric does not radically or public servant. Participants childhood development is a key alter their chances of accessing recognised both the injustice of determinant of intergenerational work. patrimonial or nepotistic networks, poverty. In contemporary and the value of social groupings South Africa, 27% of children in If a matric certificate is leveraged like stokvels, churches and similar South Africa are ‘stunted’ due towards a tertiary qualification, institutions. 6 See Mandela Initiative Synthesis Report 2018 7 See Mandela Initiative Synthesis Report 2018
THREE SCENARIOS FOR SOUTH AFRICA IN 2030 / 11 KDF 2 Resistance, Resentment and Reconciliation (RRR) Resistance, Resentment and Reconciliation (RRR), while underlying a number of phenomena, is to be seen as a During 2017/2018 many people in Cape Town had to queue to get water from natural springs. driving force in itself, manifested in various dimensions such as This speaks about the progress the transition from apartheid to identity, values and the public of reconciliatory journey in South democracy. Every 'race' group discourse. Rooted in struggles Africa and how some young appeared to have a case to make over the Constitution, gender people are beginning to question about why post-democratic South relations, and attitudes to different the journey from apartheid to Africa does not ‘belong’ to them, races are increasingly playing out maturing democracy. Respondents’ and about the mechanisms of in elevated demonstrations of feelings of reconciliation were exclusion that make them feel populism, violence and abuse. We dependent on certain outcomes unheard. This was often coupled see differences in the reading of such as racial justice and genuine with narratives of resentment history, not just between whites and social and economic redress. A against those who were perceived blacks, but also in the ways in which large number of respondents to have benefitted unfairly. As one the struggle against apartheid, the believed that the government had participant put it, the country is constitutional settlements and the TRC process is understood. SILENT 'NON-AGREEMENTS' This KDF includes the mobilisation As one participant put it, the country is replete with ‘silent non-agreements’: there are underlying conflicts we do not speak of, so as not to upset the around a sense of woundedness transition. Indeed, as the compromise and fragility of the transition become and resentment, as well as around more apparent, so too does the likelihood of its disruption ethnicity and culture. It includes fraught struggles for recognition, whether from Afrikaans language not done enough to address the replete with ‘silent non-agreements’ activists, black lesbians, Khoisan challenge of what was described as i.e. there are underlying conflicts communities or would-be "intergenerational" trauma. we do not speak of, so as not to secessionists, as well as contests 'upset' the transition. Indeed, as over affirmative action and how the compromise and fragility of the We cannot agree on our past. ‘transformation’ is legislated. transition become more apparent, There was widespread feeling The key questions and concerns so too does the likelihood of its among our participants that South explored with participants include disruption. Africans do not have enough of 'the effects of an anti-black, unjust a shared understanding of our world' that have been inherited in history, nor do they agree on who There are already moments of the new South African society. has (or has not) benefitted from rupture in which questions of
12 / INDLULAMITHI SOUTH AFRICA SCENARIOS 2030 Resistance, Resentment and Reconciliation are taking centre stage: mobilisations around decoloniality, mother-tongue education, farm murders, land, institutional racism and so on. Even within these movements, there are often deep fissures along gender and generational lines. A jobless protestor holds a placard during a march in the Ramaphosa squatter settlement, east of Meanwhile, we have begun to Johannesburg. wrestle with our Constitution to realise it. The ability to take a accountable as well as assist in the and its ability to deliver justice, long-term view in decision-making, process of reconciliation. with emerging flashpoints around and the kind of ethics and values land, traditional leadership, sexual espoused and practised will be orientation, sex work, language The state’s capacity would make critical. In this context working and access to information. Some a critical contribution to social towards a common vision, national argued that these are the seeds of cohesion as manifested in its ability unity and fostering a civic spirit in a more meaningful reconciliation in to provide economic direction, line with our Constitution will be the longer term while others were embark on long-term planning and key manifestations of this KDF. less optimistic. ensure effective social delivery. Such includes the expansion State capacity has been of the social security system, KDF 3 systemically undermined by improvements to the education, Institutional and corruption and poor skills at health and criminal justice systems, Leadership Capacity critical levels. Many Indlulamithi and the future of governance in In the wake of the moral, ethical participants worried about the state institutions. and human resource capability weaknesses in our public service. erosion experienced in the recent past, Indlulamithi participants This capacity will also help South identified Institutional and The looting of state-owned Africa in determining its position in Leadership Capacity (state, private enterprises was also of particular the arena of global relations. sector and civil society institutions) concern. World Bank Development as a key determinant for the future Indicators in 2017 suggested The project also considered of social cohesion. Leadership as that South Africa’s state capacity questions of what does it mean expressed in all spheres of South was declining at an accelerated to have a people-centred state, African society will shape the rate. Meanwhile, the country economy and society broadly? possibilities of social cohesion by has also been shaken by private What would a more peaceful, and 2030. This KDF manifests itself in sector theft and fraud. It will be more caring South Africa look like, the strategic capacity of South important for the media and civil and to what extent can there be a Africa’s leadership to appreciate society to improve their capacity common vision for the future of our the collective interest and work to hold the state and private sector country?
THREE SCENARIOS FOR SOUTH AFRICA IN 2030 / 13 THE WORLD IN 2030 South Africa’s future will play out in global and continental contexts which will shape and colour, constrain or expand our local choices. Of particular importance will be: Increasing levels of income and wealth A rise in authoritarian populist movements inequality, both between nations and within in many democracies around the world, partly countries, including all the BRICS countries. because both liberal and left-wing programmes have struggled to articulate coherent visions and win people over to their programmes. Environmental changes, including increasingly severe shifts in global climate patterns, long- term temperature increases and environmental Globalisation, and especially offshoring of degradation. Climate change impacts on Africa – work and digital disruption/4th industrial mostly causing drier and hotter conditions – need to revolution processes, have put pressure on jobs be monitored carefully. and diminished trade unions’ power to shape political debates in many parts of the world. The shift away from fossil fuels and the ‘carbon economy’ and growing pressure for all countries to The processes of globalisation and digital conform to lower carbon emissions standards. disruption have created spaces for those mobilising around identities (ethnic or national), or around ‘national security’. This is The continuing exponential advance of often driven by a ‘celebrification’ of society computer processing power leading to rapid (exacerbated by rapid uptake of social media changes in machine learning/artificial intelligence. since 2007). It is impacting on democratic The intersection of this processing power with processes and sometimes even on election gigantean data sets derived from networked results. systems and meta-surveillance is changing consumer culture, government/citizen interfaces, the media industry, education, transport networks, Rising consumer debt levels – and the and how people meet and form relationships. This possibility of severe economic ‘shocks’ such ‘4th industrial revolution’ and the creation of cyber- as another global stock market crash – might physical systems hold great potential – and much undercut the projections for steady global peril – for developing countries such as South economic growth in the medium term. Africa. Demographic growth – and stability of Geo-political shifts to a more multipolar world democracies – across the African continent as China’s economy – and military prowess – but particularly in South Africa’s neighbouring continues to grow. China will surpass the USA as countries, will impact on South Africa for many the world’s biggest economy in late 2020s. years to come.
14 / INDLULAMITHI SOUTH AFRICA SCENARIOS 2030 • MOBILE CONNECTIVITY: South and maintain relationships, connect We also need Africa has only just reached the ‘half with others – and find meaning in to be mindful way mark’ in 2018 in terms of the proportion of the population that is our lives? of these ‘cross online. Even as we move past this • JOURNALISM AND THE cutting’ global 50% connectivity milestone – which is mostly via mobile phone-enabled PUBLIC SPHERE: How will digital factors. online technology impact on the connectivity – most users cannot yet availability of news, the media afford to be online regularly because industries and their ability to of the high costs of data in South facilitate public discussions in the Africa and the lack of sufficient free online public sphere, as printed or cheap wi-fi connectivity. How newspapers become rarer and might we change this? entire news eco-systems migrate online? How might the economics • DIGITAL OPPORTUNITY: In of media and the production of a continent which averages only journalism change? 30% total online connectivity (although more than 80% of Africa’s • GLOBAL ECONOMIC GROWTH: population had cell phone access In terms of global economic in 2018), how will we navigate the opportunities and headwinds, it various opportunities that a digital, is likely that slowing productivity online world offers? How might growth – partly caused by aging we quickly increase the number of populations in the developed world people online in a meaningful way? – and slower global economic And how might we make, receive growth will impact on the growth and react to the other components potential of African countries. This of the 4th industrial revolution? might be offset by productivity- What will be the effects of rapid enhancing technology that allows prototyping and 3D on-demand billions of connected people to fabrication, rapid advances in nano- work, shop, and connect with others and biotechnology, personalised online, and to ‘stream’ information medicine, and the imminent and entertainment at low cost. Are automation of many ‘routine task’ we ready for the opportunities and jobs? risks that these shifts in the global economy offer with particular regard • LIVING MORE ONLINE LIVES: to likely changing terms of trade Assuming greater and cheaper and probable increased demand access to online technology, how for commodities anticipated for the might this change the way we form 2020s?
THREE SCENARIOS FOR SOUTH AFRICA IN 2030 / 15 • THE ROAD TO NINE BILLION: Global population second or third (or even fourth) largest economy by will increase by more than one billion people over 2030. By then, South Africa is likely to be lagging the next 12 years (to reach about 8.6 billion in 2030). about US$100 billion behind Nigeria in terms of GDP Because of Africa’s high population growth rates, 1,7 per annum, and may also be eclipsed by Ethiopia billion of the world’s population – or 20% – will be and Egypt with their rapid current growth rates and African in 2030. About 68 million of those, or 4% of the vast potential demographic dividend. How might we continental total, will be South African. benefit or be affected by faster economic growth of our continental neighbours? Are we ready to expand trade northwards and focus more on assisting Africa • THE CENTURY OF THE AFRICAN CHILD: By 2030 overcome its huge infrastructure backlogs as we one-third of all the children in the world will be overcome our own? African children. The median age in developed countries in 2018 is 40: in Africa, it is 19.7 years of age. Will our continent give these children the opportunities • GLOBAL CONNECTIONS: We also need to be they deserve? Some of these young Africans will want mindful of the many ways South Africa’s economy to access South Africa’s education systems. Others will connects to global financial flows and larger global look south for jobs and homes. Will we welcome them? trade and finance ecosystems. How might our exchange rate fluctuate over the next 12 years? What might the Rand be worth in 2030 against key global • LAND HUNGER – AND THIRSTY LANDS: Growing and continental currencies? How might this impact on populations, scarcity of water, and a slow rise in our overall balance of trade? average daily temperatures, especially in central and southern Africa, may mean less available arable land. These environmental changes – and many other factors • INVESTMENT GRADINGS: What will South Africa’s – are already propelling people into cities. Currently investment ‘grading’ be in the 2020s and in 2030 – and just 40% of the continent’s population is in urban areas. how might this affect how much foreign investment we But by 2030, almost half of Africa will be urbanised. attract, directly or indirectly, over the next 12 years? • SLUMS AND MEGACITIES: Lagos and Kinshasa will • INTEREST AND DEBT: What will our debt levels be both be ‘megacities’ of more than 20 million people by over the next 12 years, as proportion of our GDP? How 2030, and Luanda, Dar es Salaam and Johannesburg much of our annual budget will have to be directed will all be cities of more than 10 million – in just over a to repay debt? How will this influence our domestic decade’s time. Kibera, outside Nairobi, is the largest interest rates and the abilities of South Africans to urban slum in Africa with a population of about one access capital and borrow money? How indebted will million. More super-sized informal urban areas are individual South Africans be compared to 2018's high emerging, linked to or near mega-cities. Are we ready levels of personal debt and low levels of household for the impacts of this on our environments, political saving? systems and social lives? • ARE WE ALL IN THIS TOGETHER? How cohesive is • CONTINENTAL TRADE: South Africa, currently South Africa? How much of a nation are we really? And the largest economy in Africa, could become Africa’s how might this change over the next decade?
16 / INDLULAMITHI SOUTH AFRICA SCENARIOS 2030 THREE FUTURES FOR SOUTH AFRICA Ultimately, there is only one future, once you look back at it. But looking forward, there are ranges of possibilities between sets of probabilities and unexpected shocks and surprises. These are three such sets of possibilities, three stories of how South Africa’s future, as a cohesive and coherent nation, might unfold. iSbhujwa AN ENCLAVE BOURGEOIS NATION Epitomising a loose-limbed, jumpy nation with a frenetic edge, iSbhujwa is a South Africa torn by deepening social divides, daily protests and cynical self-interest.
THREE SCENARIOS FOR SOUTH AFRICA IN 2030 / 17 Nayi le Walk A NATION IN STEP WITH ITSELF In a precise sequence of steps, this scenario choreographs a vision of a South Africa where growing social cohesion, economic expansion, and a renewed spirit of constitutionalism get South Africa going. Gwara Gwara A FLOUNDERING FALSE DAWN In a nation torn between immobility and restless energy, Gwara Gwara embodies a demoralised land of disorder and decay.
18 / INDLULAMITHI SOUTH AFRICA SCENARIOS 2030 iSbhujwa AN ENCLAVE BOURGEOIS NATION Epitomising a loose-limbed, jumpy nation with a frenetic edge, iSbhujwa is a South Africa torn by deepening social divides, daily protests and cynical self-interest.
THREE SCENARIOS FOR SOUTH AFRICA IN 2030 / 19 W hat happened, people wonder, to the egalitarian spirit of Ubuntu upon which we luxury, comfort, and a high degree of autonomy. They have private schools, private security, private constitutionalism and freedom of association and speech. built our constitutional democracy golf courses, private health facilities The more cynical suggest that in the early 1990s? (with their own private ambulances), these demonstrations could be private justice mechanisms and rebranded as tourist attractions – if For many, a deep sense of historical private borehole water. Many of the only they could be more predictably injustice and resentment at their more upmarket homes operate ‘off scheduled. exclusion blows up into frequent the grid’, running solar-powered But at root, by 2030, all the divisions public protests, which become battery packs and water-from-air witnessed in South Africa in 2018 even more of an everyday feature distilling machines. have widened. of South African life. In 2028 alone, South Africa experiences almost The widespread protests are Our way – or the privatised 3 000 serious protests. Initially not always economic at root: for highway peaceful strikes and ‘service many there is anger about the In the early 2020s after several delivery’ protests often become ‘incomplete transition’, including high-profile corruption trials, mini-uprisings: blockades of the persistent power of white and despite some spectacular highways, barricading of streets, privilege and male dominance. corporate bankruptcies, the private torching of trucks, firebombing of This provokes increasingly intense sector decides to reposition itself councillors’ homes and destruction and often bitter conflicts. But the as the moral guardian of society. of state property become routine in wealthy grow cold-hearted in their Linking up with some less overtly Isbhujwa South Africa. isolation, immune to the pain of political unions, charismatic church those unable to access the lifestyle movements and supported by For ordinary people, these seven of suburbia. elements within the ‘mainstream’ or eight urban revolts per day are media, these wealthier South the most effective way in getting Just after the weather, stay Africans shore up support for a attention from the authorities, tuned for your daily protest range of private sector-centred before the state and its security report solutions to society’s key problems. apparatus are called to focus These protests are often completely their attention elsewhere. There ignored by better-off South Already by 2022 these forces are is always a bigger fire, with more Africans. Some in the middle class, able to pressure government to smoke. In 2022/3 and again in feeling insecure and separated drop much of its plan to extend 2027/8, campuses are sites of fierce from both the really wealthy and universal health care via the struggle, resulting in millions of those in the poorer classes that they NHI and instead get agreement Rand worth of damage to property have ‘left behind’, ignite protests to create more public-private and disrupting academic cycles and of their own in the name of their partnerships to run the larger many students’ exams. narrow causes. There are regular clinics and hospitals. They convince ‘protest reports’ on radio stations government to allow more private Everywhere, citizens retreat into after the news, weather and traffic universities. Most of these are their own enclaves of privilege or reports. Some regard burgeoning immediately successful despite their poverty. For the wealthy elite, their protests as a positive affirmation high fees and zero-protest policy. islands of voluntary isolation offer of South Africa’s commitment to This ‘market-led’ approach
20 / INDLULAMITHI SOUTH AFRICA SCENARIOS 2030 resonates with global investors – disregarded by urban elites, and as street crèches, transform into and often yields tangible results, often still facing daily racism, rural informal schools. Inexpensive at least for about 25% of the populations also rise up and cry out. compared to private schools, and population. Farms and crops are burned. often staffed by ex-state school teachers, some of these schools The poor by contrast feel stuck Even wealthy new black farmers, begin to outperform government in their poverty, stripped of hope beneficiaries of the rapid primary schools, especially in maths and meaningful aspiration. Poverty allocation of 4 000 state-owned and science. and ill-health continue to exact a farms between 2019 and 2022, terrible toll on families. For various find themselves targeted by irate Self-sufficiency increases, firstly as reasons, including the falling workers and landless peasants. a survival mechanism, and then as popularity of marriage, the number When a famous Stellenbosch wine part of the impetus for small-scale of single parent families increases. estate and 14 schools are reduced entrepreneurship. People realise Many unemployed men cannot to ashes just before the 2029 that despite political party promises, make peace with their inability to election, global headlines scramble jobs are not coming, at least not for provide materially for their children to describe ‘a burning rainbow’, most of the long-term unemployed. and absentee-father rates rise. or ‘a nation in flames’ and myriad Inspired by the entrepreneurial spirit of many African migrants in South Africa’s towns and cities (even if the Self-sufficiency increases, firstly as a survival mechanism, and then as part of the different communities still don’t impetus for small-scale entrepreneurship. People realise that despite political always get along), people create party promises, jobs are not coming, at least not for most of the long-term small businesses in their own areas. unemployed. Inspired by the entrepreneurial spirit of many African migrants in South Africa’s towns and cities (even if the different communities still don’t always get along), people create small businesses in their own areas. Savvy youngsters start to hustle more. Some provide for people’s day-to-day health needs in The Free State’s official rate of other fire-drenched clichés, but in innovative ways. High levels of unemployment tops 40% in 2026, truth, everyone increasingly has ‘no social trauma, whether from and for those in other poor areas, words' to describe the situation. the loss of a relative, witnessing like the Northern Cape, more than violence or long legacies of a third of jobs seekers are unable to The poor maak ’n plan apartheid violence, also mean find a job – even once – throughout And yet, even as anger and that many people struggle with the 2020s. The numbers of social acrimony grow, another famous anxiety and depression. This makes grants applied for and approved South African mark of resilience them more vulnerable to chronic increase. comes to the fore, slightly adapted: illness. As families must manage ‘the poor maak ‘n plan’. Poorer many illnesses and many different Longing for land South Africans become even more medications, there is a market for Rural protests grow less patient adept and adaptable as ‘do-it- the services of pop-up licensed with traditional and customary yourselfers’, splicing electricity ‘all-in-a-cart’ pharmacies and leadership that is often autocratic cables and looping power across entrepreneurs arranging home and demeaning. Feeling stuck at long distances. Communal early delivery of prescription chronic the back-end of every queue and child-care arrangements, such medications. These help reduce
THREE SCENARIOS FOR SOUTH AFRICA IN 2030 / 21 queuing times at clinics. Government encourages smaller Mining production continues its The older unemployed provide business through more targeted mild recovery from the historic repair services, and many initiatives. Start-ups are supported lows of 2016. A measure of policy unemployed people of all ages get by local development agencies and certainty from a hard-fought Mining some work in piecemeal cleaning private sector incubators begin to Charter sees more local and and transport services, connected function more effectively than in international investment. Although to customers by apps and instant the 2010s. There is a focus on social mechanisation and modernisation messaging as the effect of the innovation and many mentoring extend the working lives of many 4th industrial revolution widens. initiatives from the private sector mines, the number of direct jobs Collective savings via stokvels and start to pay off. This allows many created by the mining industry women’s clubs provide at least some smaller companies to create jobs decreases to 350 000 by the mid- people with access to capital. on a larger scale. More of a start- 2020s. up disposition takes root as the There is a new ‘can-do’ spirit and informal sector grows faster and Manganese, iron and chromium even a precociousness that is connects better with continue to do well as Asian unleashed, an awakening of national the needs of the economies require more and pride and a widespread shedding formal economy. Drawing on more steel and, while gold of any sense of inferiority or second- This creates, the savings made mining output stabilises by bringing in a private classness. Out of the schools and over time, in the early 2020s, the sector partner for South universities come more assertive more than African Airways (SAA), nation gets a collective generations avowing an African a million and from other partial chill down its spine identify and embracing a pan- new jobs in privatisations, provinces when the total number African solidarity. Although more the informal are encouraged to create of gold mining jobs of a middle-class experience, it is sector. manufacturing hubs drops below 100 000 for and special export embraced by younger and poorer the first time in 2022. This, zones. South Africans in urban areas who Slow-growth as so many lament, is less find each other more and more on – with or without than a quarter of those employed the sport fields, in city night clubs charters in gold mining when South Africa’s and in Uber ride-sharing schemes. By comparison, the formal economy democracy dawned in 1994. The enclaves of wealth become grows more slowly. Large-scale more non-racial in perspective and agriculture, after some expansion Let there be light disposition – even as their walls rise in 2019-2021, is beset with manufacturing higher and their isolation from the uncertainty about land. Smaller- Trying to boost other sectors, the impoverished majority increases. scale farmers make some progress government creates a range of with substantial government aid incentives to encourage various Revving up start-ups in high potential areas, but larger kinds of light manufacturing. Overall, the large established scale agribusiness does not expand Drawing on the savings made by businesses invest only as much much in the 2020s. (Other African bringing in a private sector partner as would allow them to make countries by contrast see huge for South African Airways (SAA) – substantial profits in more investments in their agricultural and from other partial privatisations, monopolised sectors. sector.) provinces are encouraged to create manufacturing hubs and special
22 / INDLULAMITHI SOUTH AFRICA SCENARIOS 2030 export zones. These localised (including the so-called JAMS who people just don’t see the value of enterprise development areas are ‘Just About Managing’ and ‘encounters’ that churches, temples, provide better local linkages and usually only a pay cheque or two mosques and shuls try to organise, clustering effects, but finding away from poverty), these roughly despite government funding for profitable niches proves difficult. six to eight million wealthier South processes designed to build a new Africans become increasingly spirit of reconciliation and redress. Despair of the NINJAS non-racial in their worldviews. The cry is for jobs and resources, and Business process outsourcing and They are social media-savvy and a more level economic playing field. international call-centre operations uber-connected, becoming more also grow significantly – until these ‘bourgeois’ in their sensibilities and There was never a ‘new TRC’, as jobs begin to be replaced in the staying in touch with global fashion, some clamoured for. People did not mid-2020s by automated AI ‘chat food and tech trends. seem to want to deal with too many bots’ that eliminate jobs that are new truths – or any truths at all. made up of routine and repetitive No truth or tasks. reconciliation But at least a spirit of There is no Partly because constitutionality survives despite ‘new TRC’ as Ultimately though, it is only the of sluggish people don’t seem regular acts of ‘insurrectionary services sector that creates much economic to want to deal with citizenship’ in the 2020s. It is too many new not unusual for communities to by way of new jobs. By 2030, South growth, and truths – or any Africa has more security guards per persistently barricade highways and stone truths at all. capita than any other nation. And high levels of police one day, and engage senior by 2030, while the unemployment inequality, South council and seek urgent interdicts in rate (20% on the narrow definition) Africans find it hard to meet courts the next day. Courts remain is lower than at the start of the across the borders of culture independent and are often the first decade, it is still far too high for any and wealth. Younger generations resort of those contesting power country that aspires to build social confront unearned privilege more inside and outside political parties. cohesion. Particularly one where the aggressively and there is some median age of the population is still progress on reconfiguring gender The SANDF and the police also well under 30 years. roles and supporting families as remain firmly under civil control core units of social cohesion. Levels and direction, and the armed forces Between the 2019 election and of gender violence decline in provide a measure of stability as 2030, South Africa has averaged some wealthier enclaves as active governing coalitions come and go. just 2.2% growth, barely keeping programmes seek to engage men the economy in line with population to change as the global ‘me too’ Shifting sands growth. Many NINJAs – those with movement impacts on South Africa’s A divided union movement, unable No Income, No Jobs and Assets – multiple patriarchies, pushed by to grow its numbers significantly slip into deeper despair, as they see new women’s formations. in the face of new forms of yet another generation unable to casualisation and the technology- climb out of poverty. Government and many based atomisation of work, tries private projects seek to foster to push back and create pressure Joined by a growing ‘middle class’ 'reconciliation', but this turns out to for a more effective state rollout of of various levels of financial security be mostly hot air. In the poorer areas, resources and a better distribution
THREE SCENARIOS FOR SOUTH AFRICA IN 2030 / 23 of wealth. Having played an important role in curbing and exposing corporate excesses and corruption in the state in the 2010s, many in the union movement seek new ways to engage with more political struggles, stabilise institutions and grow their membership. Despite this, COSATU finds its role diminished as a reconfigured tripartite alliance fails to repair a decade of damage. Unable to convince its restless membership, and with cadres not fully satisfied with occasional government positions offered by the ANC, the SACP experiments with ‘going it alone’ in the 2026 local government Widespread violence broke out in Tshwane after the ANC announced their choice of mayoral elections. To the surprise of many, candidate for Tshwane in 2016. it attains some 5% of the vote. widespread informalisation of work ability to create large and more Fractious debate ensues on how continue. compliant ‘voter’ blocks than the to approach the 2029 elections, urban areas. especially in light of some violent At the same time, a party formed incidents between ANC and in 2019 to campaign against Conferences and compacts SACP members in the 2026 local corruption trials (but claiming After a few relatively stable years government elections. to pursue radical economic in the early 2020s, in the lead transformation) makes little impact up to the 2022 ANC elective Newer unions and federations at national level, but does cut a conference and the 2024 national battle to consolidate their impact few percentages from the ANC in elections, the ANC finds itself and influence and work out the KwaZulu-Natal. This party eventually unable to overcome the disruptive right balance between shop floor allies with an IFP that has made dynamic of factionalism. The effectiveness and their ability to small gains in the province. party splits along lines that reflect shape the political climate and the polarisations of the NASREC influence policy choices on the Urban and rural divides deepen, conference of December 2017, but health system and educational as drought and a lack of support with more provincially based fault reforms. Much of what had been for rural development thrusts lines coming to the fore. a constructive ‘pressure from the ever more people off the land. The ANC is not alone in its internal left’ increasingly has little effect Traditional leaders in many battles: all the major political as the growing ‘gig-economy’, provinces make a play for greater parties split in the 2020s over steep deindustrialisation and the power and resources, aware of their issues of both style and substance.
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