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About Us

​who we are and what we do


Joel Netshitenzhe

Executive Director

Barry Gilder

Director: Operations


Director: Research

Xolelwa Kashe-Katiya

Director: Project Management

Lorraine Pillay

Financial Manager

Gloria Britain

Company Secretary

Noma Moyo

Information Technology Manager

Jeffrey Sehume

Senior Researcher: Faculty of Humanity

Dr. Salimah Valiani

Senior Researcher: Faculty of Political Economy

David Maimela

Researcher: Faculty of Political Economy

Zamanzima Mazibuko

Senior Researcher: Faculty of Knowledge Economy and Scientific Advancement

Dr. Beth Vale

Researcher: Humanity

Dzunisani Mathonsi

Project Officer

Duduetsang Mokoele

Researcher: Faculty of Knowledge Economy and Scientific Advancement

Patience Kelebogile Salane

Junior Researcher: Faculty of Political Economy

Terry Shakinovsky

Publications Coordinator

Magati Nindi

Resource Mobilisation Officer

Siphokazi Sigenu

Communications Officer

Towela Ng’ambi

Consultancy Services Officer

Thabang Moerane


Solomon Thoka

Intern: Consultancy Service

Wandile Ngcaweni

Intern: Faculty of Political Economy

Mlungisi Makhanya

Intern: Operations

Rose Maleke Ngwato

Office Assistant

Temoso Mashile

Intern: Research

Executive Director-Joel Netshitenzhe


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Joel Netshitenzhe has a Master of Science (MSc) degree in Financial Economics and a post-graduate diploma in Economic Principles from the University of London, and a diploma in Political Science from the Institute of Social Sciences in Moscow.  

He is a Member of the Boards of the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR), Nedbank Group and Life Healthcare Group; and a Champion within Programme Pioneer of the Nelson Mandela Foundation and Life College Association. He is a member of the ANC National Executive Committee, and also served as a member of the National Planning Commission (2010 – 2015).   

Before joining the Government Communication and Information System (GCIS) as CEO in 1998, Mr Netshitenzhe was Head of Communication in President Nelson Mandela’s office. In addition to being GCIS CEO, he was appointed Head of the Policy Co-ordination and Advisory Services (PCAS) in The Presidency, in 2001. He headed the PCAS on a full-time basis from 2006 until his retirement in 2009. 

Before 1994, he served in various capacities within the ANC: Radio Freedom, Mayibuye editor, member of the ANC Politico-Military Council and Deputy Head of the Department of Information and Publicity, and as part of the ANC negotiating team.

Director: Operations-Barry Gilder


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From 1990 to 1992, Barry Gilder was Administrative Editor of Africa Information Afrique, a development news agency, first in Zimbabwe and then in South Africa after his return from exile in 1991. He then served as Head Communications and later Deputy Director of the Matla Trust until he was deployed into the new democratic government at the beginning of 1995. He served as General Manager and later Deputy Director-General of the South African Secret Service from 1995 until 1999 and then as Deputy Director-General of the National Intelligence Agency from 2000 to 2003.


In 2003 he was appointed Director-General of the Department of Home Affairs and in 2005 was appointed Coordinator for Intelligence until his retirement from government in 2007.


In 2010 he helped to set up the Mapungubwe Institute and served as its Director Operations until early 2013 when he left to spend a year and a half in New Delhi, India. He continued as a Fellow of the Mapungubwe Institute.


In September 2013 he was appointed as a Senior Visiting Fellow in the University of the Witwatersrand’s Graduate School of Public and Development Management (now known as the Wits School of Governance) and in October was appointed to the Council of South Africa’s new National School of Government. He took up his new post in MISTRA on 1 October 2014.

He is the author of Songs and Secrets: South Africa from Liberation to Governance (Jacana 2012, Hurst 2012).


Director: Research -Vacant


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This post is currently vacant.


Director: Project Management-Xolelwa Kashe-Katiya


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Xolelwa Kashe-Katiya studied towards a BSc degree at the University of Cape Town where she majored in Archaeology. After graduating, she went on to complete an Honours degree in Physical Anthropology, at the University of Pretoria. In 2010 she was awarded a fellowship by the Archives and Public Culture Research Initiative to complete a Master of Philosophy degree in Heritage and Public Culture at the University o​f Cape Town’s Centre for African Studies.


She has in the past worked as a researcher and project manager in donor-funded, public and academic environments. Her past duties included quality assurance, monitoring and evaluation of complex projects, specifically in the media, cultural and creative industries.  She has also assisted in providing intellectual, political, and professional direction to projects that serve as a platform for the arts, archives and heritage practitioners. She is passionate about critical engagements with knowledge production and the dissemination of knowledge within African contexts. 


Xolelwa is also a correspondent at the Archival Platform and has recently been appointed as an Honorary Research Associate by the University of Cape Town.

Xolelwa has also worked as MISTRA's Head of Consultancy Services. In December 2016, she was promoted to Director: Project Management.


Financial Manager -Lorraine Pillay


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Lorraine Pillay joined the Mapungubwe Institute as a Financial Manager in February 2014. Prior to joining MISTRA, she worked at MOSCON OPTICS (PTY) Ltd where she started as Junior Credit Control in 1992 and progressed to be a Financial Manager. In this role, she also drove the financial functions for other companies within the MOSCON group such as Moscon Medical and Moscon Properties.

After completing her Bcom in Accounting at the University of South Africa, Lorraine continued to further her studies at the Chartered Institute of Management Accounts where she completed her T4 – Part B. CIMA is recognized as the world’s largest body of management accountants.

Lorraine’s interest is in art and reading and travelling.     


Company Secretary-Gloria Britain


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Gloria Britain is a seasoned Public Sector Management specialist who has worked in the public and private sectors on various transformation and development programmes and projects over several years.

She has held various full time positions as well as set up a consultancy which provided organisational & management development services to diverse non-profit organizations, companies and institutions including Nedbank, South African Broadcasting Corporation, various local government departments, the National Prosecutions Authority, National Departments of Education, Health and Social Development, UNICEF and UNAIDS. Gloria, through her consultancy also provided facilitation services such as strategic planning and training on various non-profit board matters and other areas of organisational development.

Gloria consulted in the donor funding environment, conducting organisational evaluations for local and international funders both nationally and in the Southern African region. She also worked in grant making for civil society organisations. She has worked in resource mobilisation in the areas of: advanced proposal writing, funding raising from High Networth Individuals, conducting funding audits and fund raising planning.

Gloria worked in the Human Capital Development space both in the public and private sectors, with the focus on strategic learning and growth.

Gloria has a BA Social Science Degree from the University of Cape Town, an adult education qualification from the University of British Colombia, a Coaching qualification from Results Systems Coaching in the neuroscience coaching methodology and is a member of the Coaching & Mentoring Association of South Africa, (COMESA).


Information Technology Manager -Noma Moyo


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Noma Moyo joined MISTRA as the Information Technology manager in July 2017. Noma's goals for MISTRA are to contribute to the advancement of research through knowledge transfer and creating an understanding of Information Technology Services Management (ITSM) thereby adding value to the Institute. "As an Information Technology Infrastructure Library (ITIL) expert, I believe ITSM gives organisations a strong  advantage in harnessing technologies," says Noma. 

Noma graduated in 2015 with a Master of Philosophy degree in Information and Knowledge Systems from Stellenbosch University  She is also an experienced information scientist with an MSC and a BSC honours in Library and Information Science from the National University of Science and Technology (Zimbabwe), She is an ITIL Expert certified by AXELOS.

Her experience includes working as a Records and information Officer at Johannesburg Housing Company, where she was also responsible for the company’s ICT environment. She worked at Khulisa Management Services as a Knowledge Management Junior Researcher.​

Senior Researcher: Faculty of Humanity-Jeffrey Sehume


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Jeffrey Mathethe Sehume was born in 1972 in Kwa Thema Ekurhuleni. He studied at the University of Witwatersrand for his B. A. in Social Sciences and MA Degrees. He taught at Rhodes University (Grahamstown), AFDA College (JHB) and Fort Hare University, specialising in Media, Communication and Social Science Theories.

He joined the then University of Natal in 1999-200 as a postgraduate in the Centre for Cultural and Media Studies (CCMS). He is also a former recipient of a CODESRIA Fellowship served at Legon (Ghana) and North-western Universities (USA). At CCMS he had an opportunity to participate in research field trips aimed at analysing ‘representation and identity” issues of, amongst others, the Khoisan social groups

He was previously the editor of the Critical Arts Journal. 

From 2007 to 2010, he was a researcher and speech writer at the Presidency. He joined the Mapungubwe Institute as a researcher in September 2010.

Senior Researcher: Faculty of Political Economy-Dr. Salimah Valiani


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Dr. Salimah Valiani, PhD is Senior Researcher in MISTRA’s faculty of political economy.  She holds a visiting professorship with the Centre for Researching Education and Labour at the University of Witwatersrand. With an academic background in world historical political economy. Her research specialisations are in the areas of economic development in historical perspective, international labour migration, the political economy of health care, and the global caring economy. Since 2001, she has worked as a researcher in non-governmental organisations and unions in Canada, Indonesia, the Philippines, India, and South Africa. 

She is the author of the research monograph, Rethinking Unequal Exchange: the global integration of nursing labour markets (University of Toronto Press: 2012); a range of policy papers and academic journal articles, and several popular articles on economic policy and economic justice. In June 2012 she was awarded the Feminist Economics Rhonda Williams Prize – an award recognising feminist scholarship and activism in the spirit of the African American economist and activist, Rhonda Williams.  



Research Monograph: Rethinking Unequal Exchange - The Global Integration of Nursing Labour Markets

Poetry: Land of the Sky

Poetry: Letter Out: Letter In

Poetry: Breathing for Breadth



Researcher: Faculty of Political Economy-David Maimela


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David Maimela is a graduate of the University of Pretoria. He holds an Honours Degree in International Relations and a Political Science degree and has a certificate in United States Studies collaboration between Indiana University and the University of Pretoria). Between 2007 and 2009 he was awarded the Mandela Rhodes Scholarship by the Mandela Rhodes Foundation.

In 2010 David was chosen as one of the Mail and Guardian 200 Emerging Young Leaders in South Africa. He has an extensive background in student and youth politics in South Africa and as a result has a deep appreciation of the challenges, progress and prospects of education and youth development in South Africa.

David has worked in the defunct Gauteng Youth Commission and the Gauteng Office of the Premier in the policy and Governance Branch. In his period in the Office of the Premier, he acquired extensive experience in the policy making process in government.

David has an interest in international political economy with emphasis on alternative economics and emerging economies, international relations with focus on Africa, foreign policy and diplomacy and security studies.  David joined the Mapungubwe Institute in November 2010.

Senior Researcher: Faculty of Knowledge Economy and Scientific Advancement-Zamanzima Mazibuko


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Zamanzima Mazibuko is a WITS University Alumni. She holds a BSc degree in Biochemistry and Cell Biology and a BSc Honours in Pharmacology. She obtained her MSc (Med) in Pharmaceutics cum laude and published the following review article in an international journal:

Zamanzima Mazibuko, Yahya E. Choonara, Lisa C. Dutoit, Girish Modi, Dinesh Naidoo, Viness Pillay. A Review of the Potential Role of nano-enabled Drug Delivery Technologies in Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis: Lessons Learned from Other Neurodegenerative Disorders. J. Pharm Sci, 104: 1213-1229. 

She has a patent filed with WITS Enterprise for a nano-enabled drug delivery system designed and formulated for her Master's Degree. Zamanzima was awarded a Carnegie Bale Scholarship for black women in Science and Engineering between 2007- and 2011. In 2013, she was awarded a Gauteng Department of Agriculture and Rural Development (GDARD) bursary to complete her Master's degree. She has been a member of the Golden Key International Society since 2008.

Zamanzima joined MISTRA as a Researcher in the Faculty of Knowledge Economy and Scientific Advancement (KESA). Previously, she was a Project Research Assistant at the Student Equity and Talent Management Unit (SETMU) at the University of the Witwatersrand. She is passionate about social justice and more specifically, gender equality. She plans to pursue a PhD degree in the near future.

Researcher: Humanity-Dr. Beth Vale


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Dr. Beth Vale's research interests span youth body politics, nocturnal cities, HIV interventions, and quotidian productions of sociality as well as power and privilege in South African society. Before joining MISTRA, Beth served as a postdoctoral fellow under the NRF Chair in Local Histories, Present Realities at the University of the Witwatersrand.  Her postdoctoral research explores urban nightclub cultures in Southern Africa, which she also discusses in regular postings for Bubblegumclub’s online magazine, as well as other print and online publications.  

Beth has a DPhil from the University of Oxford. Her doctoral thesis investigated the medication-taking practices of HIV-positive adolescents in the Eastern Cape. Here, she took interests in the ways that adolescents used and interpreted HIV-treatment, incorporating pills into their everyday pursuits of recognition and belonging. Articles deriving from this work have been published in the Journal of Southern African Studies, Development and Change, Medical Anthropology Quarterly and Medical Anthropology. 

Prior to her time at Oxford, Beth studied for an MA in Sociology at the University of Cape Town, over the course of which she investigated the challenges and successes of community health providers. Her BA Honours degree in Politics and Philosophy is from Rhodes University, where she also served as the university's HIV Advocacy Officer and President of the Student HIV/AIDS Resistance Campaign. Over the years, Beth has worked as a pro bono intern/consultant for a range of advocacy organisations including Anthrologica, Paediatric AIDS Treatment for Africa, The Treatment Action Campaign and Kheth'Impilo seeking to bridge the worlds of research, policy and practice. 

Project Officer-Dzunisani Mathonsi


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Dzunisani Mathonsi holds a Bachelor of Arts in social science from the University Of Limpopo where her majors were Psychology and Criminology. She is currently doing her Honours in Psychology at the University of South Africa. 

She has worked herself up MISTRA's ranks as she joined the Institute as an intern and was later promoted to Consultancy Services Officer thereafter was promoted to Project Manager.

She envisions herself as Social Scientist who is very much interested in society’s development and growth. She also strives to learn how individuals and groups make decisions and gain insight into their different behaviour patterns.

Dzunisani interests lie in acquiring skills and perspectives to solve complex social problems, to engage in communication and collaboration across the social science discipline, and to utilize a shared infrastructure for social science. During 2013-2014 April Dzunisani participated in volunteer work as a care worker and a team leader at an NGO called future families.


Researcher: Faculty of Knowledge Economy and Scientific Advancement-Duduetsang Mokoele


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Duduetsang Mokoele has been recently promoted to Research after serving as an Assistant Researcher in
the Faculty of Knowledge Economy and Scientific Advancement (KESA). She has an academic background in International Relations, Political Studies and Public Policy and Administration. 

In 2010 she was inducted into the Golden Key International Honour Society. In 2011 she was the recipient of the postgraduate Merit Award and the Chief Justice Ismail Mohamed medal. In the same
year she was a tutor at the University of the Witwatersand’s International Relations Department. 

Before joining MISTRA she was an intern at the Department of Science and Technology’s International Resources Programme.

In future she hopes to study for a Masters Degree in International Security with a regional concentration on Africa and East Asian countries and thematic concentrations on Defence/Security Economics and Innovation and sustainable development. She aspires to playing a role in policy making in South Africa.

Junior Researcher: Faculty of Political Economy-Patience Kelebogile Salane


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Patience Kelebogile Salane is a Kimberley-born gender activist who matriculated from Vryburg High School in 2009. She holds a BA in Political Science from the University of Johannesburg as well as an Honours degree in Philosophy. Her research interests centre on African Philosophy, Black feminism, existentialism, postcolonial studies, as well as socio-economic studies. 

Before joining MISTRA, she tutored Philosophy at UJ as well as tutoring both high school and university students within the context of the Model United Nations. In addition, Patience believes in scholarship that includes black lived experiences in general and those of black women in particular; and aspires to contribute as much as possible to theories dedicated to advancing these experiences.

Publications Coordinator-Terry Shakinovsky


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​​Terry Shakinovsky has an Honours Degree in English and Oral History from the University of Witwatersrand and is an experienced writer and editor; creative content strategist; project and production manager, publishing and a journalist. 

Terry’s honours thesis is on Sharpeville township. She has had extensive involvement in anti-apartheid organisations such as CRIC where her work entailed building relationships with students, women’s and community organisations across South Africa. She has also worked in similar roles in the Soul City Institute. She has extensive experience in electronic media as a producer and media consultant and has worked in broadcasting environments. Terry has edited various books, reports as well as radio programmes.

Resource Mobilisation Officer-Magati Nindi


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Magati Nindi was born in Dar –es –Salaam, Tanzania. She holds a Master’s degree in International Relations majoring in peace studies and conflict resolution from the University of the North West. Her interest lies in Africa’s foreign direct investment post-independence and fundraising

Before being appointed as a Resource Mobilisation Officer at MISTRA, Magati worked as a Fund Developer at Jo’burg Child Welfare and the Legal Resources Centre. She also worked at the University of the North West Politics Department.

Communications Officer-Siphokazi Sigenu


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Siphokazi Sigenu’s experience in media and communication started as a Communications, Outreach and Education Intern at the Public Protector South Africa. In this capacity, she provided a supportive role in all media relations, outreach, event planning and coordination as well as internal and external publication production activities.

At the end of her internship, she joined the National Youth Development Agency (NYDA) as a Social Media and Web Specialist. The core functions of the role included research and sourcing of information as well as extrapolating data for reporting, including content development and analysis, online communication strategies as well as proofreading and editing.

She holds a BA Corporate Communication degree from the University of Johannesburg (UJ), majoring in Communication and Psychology and a Bachelor of Business Administration (Marketing Management) from the IMM Graduate School of Marketing with majors in Business Management and Financial Management. She also recently completted a BCom Honours in Business Management, majoring in Marketing at the University of South Africa (Unisa).   ​ 

Consultancy Services Officer-Towela Ng’ambi


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Towela Ng'ambi is currently completing a Masters in Development Studies at the University of Johannesburg. She has Honours degrees in Psychology and Development Studies, and a BA in Arts.

Towela has been in the role of student assistant at the University of Western Cape. She has also worked at the Olive Leaf Foundation and UNICEF, in administration, project management, stakeholder engagements, data capturing and management of data bases and public relations respectively.


Administrator-Thabang Moerane


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Thabang Moerane was born in Johannesburg and grew up in the North West Province. She matriculated at Pres Mangope Technical High School.

She has a Secretarial and Advanced Secretarial Diploma. She is presently studying with UNISA for a Bcom in Business Management. She previously worked on a contract basis before joining the Government Communication and Information System (GCIS) in 1999 as a secretary. She was later promoted to the post of Personal Assistant.  In 2006 she was seconded to the presidency as Personal Assistant to the Head of Policy Co-ordination and Advisory Services (PCAS).

Thabang joined Mapungubwe Institute as an Administrator in July 2010.

Intern: Consultancy Service-Solomon Thoka


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Solomon Thoka holds a BA in Social Science & Health Science from the University of South Africa (UNISA). He is currently doing his Honours in Psychology at the same University. He has a strong passion for human behaviour and human transformation and intends on furthering his studies and wishes to complete his Masters in Clinical Psychology.

One of his outstanding works was his research proposal on studying the relationship between mental health and child development conducted for his assignment purposes.

Before joining MISTRA as an Intern, he worked as a Library Assistant at UNISA and also worked as a Peer Helper at  UNISA's Student Support.

Intern: Faculty of Political Economy-Wandile Ngcaweni


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Wandile Ngcaweni has a BA (Development Studies) degree with a major in Historical Studies from the University of Johannesburg. During his undergraduate studies he volunteered as an intern at MISTRA. It is during this time, Wandile found his calling in academic research.  

Wandile attended the Decolonial Summer School at the University of South Africa. He is also an Alumni of the Thabo Mbeki African Leadership Institute (TMALI) where he completed a course in African Political  Economy-The Africa Economic Challenge. 

He is currently completing another course from TMALI in Policy Making and Analysis for Africa’s Development. 

Wandile is currently doing his BA Hons (Development Studies) at UNISA. He enjoys writing commentary and opinion columns in various publications , focus being what’s relevant to the youth, such as decolonisation and Fallism and social development.  

Intern: Operations-Mlungisi Makhanya


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Mlungisi Makhanya attended both Primary and High school in Kempton Park then later moved on to pursue his studies at the University of Johannesburg where he graduated majoring in Public Relations and Communications.

During his undergraduate studies he volunteered at Kaya FM working closely with the Marketing team finding new and innovative strategies on developing and implementing promotional activities and public relations campaigns relating to youth initiatives.

In the year 2014 Mlungisi completed his Work Integrated Learning (WIL) at the South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC) where he served as a Marketing intern at iKwekwezi FM. In this capacity, Mlungisi gianed exposure and garnered experience in developing marketing plans, press releases, media monitoring, public relations, proposals, event coordination and client communication. He later joined Ole Media Group: TeamTalk Media where he took on the role of Digital Content Producer prior joining the Mapungubwe Institute.

Mlungisi is an aspirant Public Relations and Communications prodigy  with future ambitions in studying further in Business Communication and Administration. He has a passion for events management.

Office Assistant-Rose Maleke Ngwato


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Rose Maleke Ngwato was born in Glen Cowie, Limpopo. She completed her primary schooling at the Sebajaneng Primary and went on to study at Matshumane Secondary.
In 1997 she moved to Johannesburg where she found employment at Cyber Cleaning and Security Services and thereafter joined MISTRA in 2010 as an Office Assistant.
Rose is an avid church lover and a devoted mother of three boys. She strongly believes that Ubuntu should be the principle that guides people into living harmoniously with each other. 

Intern: Research-Temoso Mashile


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​Temoso Mashile matriculated in 2009 at Sutherland High School in Centurion.  She began her studies in at the University of Witwaterstrand in 2010 and later continued at the University of Pretoria where she graduated with a BCom Economics degree, majoring in Statistics.

Her journey of self-discovery started in 2016 when she did some voluntary work at children homes and old age homes. In this capacity she was also afforded the opportunity to shadow Asanda Notshe, at Mazi Capital. 

She joins MISTRA as an Intern in Research. Temoso is looking forward to broaden her knowledge. She is also currently studying towards a Honours degree in Economics at the University of Johannesburg.  Her future aspirations are to get a Ph.D.