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Emerging Markets - BRICS & CIVETS Resources @ Pitt (Brazil, India, Russia, China, South Africa & Colombia, Indonesia, Vietnam, Egypt, Turkey, South Africa and more ...): South Africa Today

This guide is designed to provide selected high-quality resources for those interested in emerging market economies. It features individual country pages as well as sources searchable by topic or country.

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Course Info

South Africa Today

Class times: 5pm Friday, March 22, 2013 to 1pm Sunday, March 24, 2013 (2400 Sennott Square, University of Pittsburgh).

As a rising state in the world economy and with a rich history and culture, South Africa’s status is shifting. South Africa Today is a one-credit (Pitt)/ three-unit (CMU) mini course, consisting of 14 hours of classes over a weekend, with a major paper assignment to be completed for credit.

The course will open with two keynote lectures on Friday evening on an overview of the issues. This will be followed by instructional lectures on Saturday on the various themes by experts in the fields.  Sunday morning will be a discussion of two case studies and a panel discussion by the speakers on future challenges, and some possible projections/ recommendations.


As global citizens, students need to have a working knowledge of other countries, which are important in shaping the corporate, social and political world. As a rising state in the world economy, South Africa’s status in the business and in world affairs is shifting.

Course Learning Outcomes:

At the end of the course, the students will:

1. Have a general understanding of the corporate, geo-political, cultural and social factors that define the South African economic, cultural and technological landscape at the present time.

2. Explore one of these factors in depth, through the research paper.


This short course will explore how various intersections of economy, society, and identity interact in South Africa and in the perceived position of South Africa as an emerging world economy.

It will explore questions such as:

•How do South Africa’s history and diversity reflect in the policies and the economy of South Africa today? In the way South Africans react with the market?

•What are today’s challenges in attaining equity in quality of life in South Africa? What are some of its greatest needs?

•What are impediments to South Africa’s economic and business growth?

•What are the challenges of multinational firms in developing countries and how can those challenges be overcome?

•What are some of the salient features of the U.S.-South African Relations?

•How have cultural traditions and modernizations integrated in South Africa? What have been some cultural responses to globalization?

•What lies ahead? What are the opportunities and challenges in South Africa’s immediate future?


Due to the immersive nature of the course, students are expected to attend all sessions on all three days. Further, each student will be required to read the assigned book and develop a research paper on one dimension of modern South Africa that has been introduced in class. The paper should be based on one of the topics covered in the course. The length of the term paper will be 5-10 pages, double spaced in 11 point font. Term papers are due by April 19th and should be submitted through Carnegie Mellon's Blackboard assignment tab for the course.

Instructors (responsible for grades and class organization)

Veronica Dristas, University of Pittsburgh Amy Burkert, Carnegie Mellon University. 

Professors Amy Burkert ( are responsible for grades at Carnegie Mellon and Larry Feick (  and Veronica Dristas ( at the University of Pittsburgh, respectively. Please send e-mail to us individually if you have questions regarding grades.

Liaison Librarian and Reference / Instruction

Lois Kepes's picture
Lois Kepes
G20-X Hillman Library (Ground Floor)


Tuesday evening appointments often available.

CMU Students

CMU students may visit Hillman Library's service desk on the ground floor to get a temporary logon.  It will permit you to access our ebooks and databases while in Hillman Library. 

Pitt affliates should be able to access all material from on campus or remotely.  Our Ezproxy server will prompt you to log in from with your email user name and password when you access paid licensed content (databases and ebooks).  

Course Schedule

Tentative Schedule ( updated 3-14-13)

Friday, March 22 5:00 - 8:00pm

5:00 pm- 5:15 pm Brief Introductions and Welcome

5:15 pm- 5:30 pm Pre- evaluation survey

5:30 pm - 6:30 pm Louis A. Picard - "South Africa: The Iron Age to Apartheid and to Post-Apartheid Government, Part 1"

6:30 pm- 6:45 pm Break

6:45pm- 8:00 pm Louis A. Picard – "South Africa: The Iron Age to Apartheid and to Post-Apartheid Government, Part 2"


Saturday, March 23 8:30am - 6:45pm

8:30 am- 9:45 am John Siko -Africa and the World Today

9:45 am - 10:00 am Break

10:00 am- 11:15 am Johnny Moloto – Socia- economic and Health

11:15 am- 11:30 am Break

11:30 am- 12:45 pm

 Jean Nachega Hiv/Aids and South Africa

(via Video Conference)

12:45 pm - 2:00 pm Lunch


2:00 pm - 3:15 pm David Hirshmann

3:15-pm - 3:30 pm Break

3:30 pm - 4:45 pm Patrick Bond- BRICS impact on South Africa (via Video Conference)

4:45 pm - 5:00 Break

5:00-pm - 6:15 pm John Siko – Domestic and Foreign policy


Sunday, March 24, 9:00am - 12:00pm

9:00am- 10:15am Beverly Peters Rural South Africa/ Women/Micro Finance 10:15am -10:30 am Break

10:30 am - 11:45 am - Gavin Steingo

11:45 am - 12:00 pm Conclusion and evaluation

  Sponsored by:

University of Pittsburgh: Global Studies Center, Department of Economics, Katz Graduate School of Business, the Swanson School of Engineering, International Business Center, and College of Buisness Administration Carnegie Mellon University: H. John Heinz III College, Office of the Provost, Division of Student Affairs