Upcoming events

31 January 2018: PhD application deadline

The final deadline for 2018 PhD applications in Economics and/or Internationa Trade is 31 January 2018. Find out more about our postgraduate programmes here


Recent events

7 November 2017: Visit from the WTO to recruit PhD students and staff

On 7 November, Dr Mustaqeem De Gama (Counsellor: SA Pemanent Mission to the WTO) and a delegation from the World Trade Organisation (WTO), visited TRADE in order to:

i) raise awareness of the World Trade Organization as an employer of choice;

ii) shed light on the various ways to join the WTO (e.g. intern, young professional, fixed-term staff) and provide information on the typical jobs at the WTO; and

iii) explain the recruitment process for those interested, in detail.

Students and staff from all three of the North-West University campuses (Potchefstroom, Vaal and Mafikeng) attended the highly informative event. 

18 & 20 October 2017: Master's and PhD degrees awarded

Many congratulations to Ms Michelle Groenewald (MCom Economics) and Dr Carli Bezuidenhout (PhD Economics) who recently received their respective degrees from the North West University.

Michelle received an MCom in Economics with the topic of her dissertation being: 'A cross-country analysis of the relationship between racial and ethnic tolerance and economic freedom'. She was guided by Dr Carike Claassen and Prof Derick Blaauw.

Carli received a PhD in Economics with the topic of her thesis being: 'Essays in export behaviour at the firm level'. Her promoters were Prof Marianne Matthee and Prof Neil Rankin (Stellenbosch University).

11-13 October 2017: Prof Derick Blaauw expands day labour research to Namibia

From 11 to 13 October 2017, Prof Derick Blaauw and Prof Rinie Schenck (from University of the Western Cape) were in Namibia where they had the opportunity to expand their ongoing research regarding day labourers into that country. The research visit was made possible through a Research and Development Grant (RDG) from the North-West University. Prof Blaauw and Prof Schenck formed a new research team for the Namibia project, with Mrs Rachel Freeman of the Department of Social Work at the University of Namibia as the local research partner. Mrs Freeman had liaised with possible fieldworkers and put together a final team of fieldworkers (all drawn from the Department of Social Work) for the project.

Fieldworker training took place on 11 October, with all fieldworkers having been carefully selected to accommodate all the languages expected to be encountered on the streets of Windhoek. The training was followed by two days of early mornings (6 a.m. starts) and long hours in the hot Namibian sun on the streets interviewing day labourers who try to make a living from informal employment. Hiring sites that were identified in an earlier reconnaissance were visited and willing day labourers were interviewed. The fieldwork went well and more than 80 interviews were conducted. Afterwards, there was a debriefing with some time spent reflecting on the shared experiences.

The data will now be cleaned and prepared for capturing. A preliminary perusal of the questionnaires has already revealed some important differences between the day labour market in Windhoek and South Africa - in particular, the existence of a higher skills wage premium which will be further investigated. The objective now is to publish at least three to four joint research articles in peer-reviewed journals and to prepare a number of conference papers from the data. 

12 October 2017: TRADE presentation at UJ Department of Economics' seminar series

On 12 October, Prof Wilma Viviers and Mr Martin Cameron visited the University of Johannesburg (UJ) to deliver a presentation as part of the Department of Economics and Econometrics' Thursday Seminar Series. The topic of their presentation was 'TRADE-DSM ® (Decision Support Model) for the identification of export opportunities for South Africa'. 

The presentation was attended by staff from UJ's Department of Economics and Econometrics and was of particular interest to those working in the field of international trade.

In the photo (from left to right): Mr Martin Cameron (Director of Trade Advisory (Pty) Ltd), Dr Talita Greyling (UJ Department of Economics and Econometrics) and Prof Wilma Viviers (Director of the TRADE research focus area). 

9 October 2017: Guest lecture by Mr Michael Adams (SARB) 

On 9 October, Mr Michael Adams, lead economist at the South African Reserve Bank (SARB), visited the North-West University to deliver a guest lecture at TRADE. The topic of his presentation was 'Analysis and research of the economy by the SA Reserve Bank'. 

The presentation was attended by staff and students from TRADE and the School of Economics. 

28 September & 16-20 October 2017: Sharing knowledge and gaining cultural understanding

Prof Henri Bezuidenhout has had a very busy and productive time travelling around the world in the last few weeks. On 28 September, he presented a paper at the Interdisciplinary Business Reseach SIBR conference in Hong Kong titled, 'Emerging markets global players: A comparison between the OFDI multinationals of Brazil, China and South Africa'. After the conference, Prof Bezuidenhout travelled to China and Korea to enrich his understanding of the cultural differences between South Africa and these two major trading partners.

Then, from 16-20 October, Prof Bezuidenhout also attended an advanced training course titled, 'Leading across borders and cultures' at INSEAD business school in Fontainebleau, France. The course was led by Erin Meyer, currently the world's foremost researcher in the fields of Cross-Cultural Management, Intercultural Negotiations and Multi-Cultural Leadership. Prof Bezuidenhout also became part of a focus group which hopes to research cultural differences in Africa with a view to enhancing business ties across the continent.

26-28 September 2017: TRADE at the WTO Public Forum

Prof Wilma Viviers, Prof Marianne Matthee, Prof Sonja Grater and Ms Carli Bezuidenhout recently attended the 2017 WTO Public Forum in Geneva, Switzerland. 

On 27 September, Prof Viviers was the moderator for a working session on the topic, 'Driving inclusive growth and enhancing intra-African trade through services sector development'. Presentations were given by Ms Deborah Vorhies, Dr Judith Fessehaie and Dr Sherry Stephenson (all from the International Centre for Trade and Sustainable Development, or ICTSD) as well as Ambassador Moshe Kao (formerly of the Lesotho Mission in Geneva) and Prof Sonja Grater from TRADE.  

Later in the afternoon, Ms Carli Bezuidenhout and Prof Marianne Matthee participated in a working session on the topic, 'Trade behind the headlines: Case studies from WTO Chairs'. They presented a joint paper titled 'Inclusive growth and wage inequality: The case of South African manufacturing exporters'.

The WTO produced a series of informative videos from the 2017 Forum as well as audio recordings of individual working sessions which are available to listen to on the WTO website

September 2017: Prof Waldo Krugell elected to serve as next ESSA president

Prof Waldo Krugell was elected to serve as the next president Economic Society of South Africa (ESSA) at the Biennial Conference of the ESSA held at Rhodes University in Grahamstown. Prof Waldo Krugell is the first NWU academic to be elected president. Congratulations Waldo! 


Past events at TRADE

20172016, 2015, 2014, 2013 and 2012