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Home » Prof Mbongiseni Buthelezi

Name: Mbongiseni Buthelezi
Location: D Ring 505, Auckland Park Kingsway Campus
Anthropology and Development Studies Staff  Staff Members

Contact Details:
Tel: +27 (0) 11 559 4790


About Prof Mbongiseni Buthelezi

Professor Buthelezi research focuses on studying land, governance and the state in South Africa. He is interested in trajectories of land reform, the role of traditional authorities in land governance, the study of institutions of the state as well as on corruption and state capture. He explores how we can think with pre-colonial pasts to forge decolonial futures in areas ranging from identity and archives to governance and state building. Mbongiseni is the Executive Director of the Public Affairs Research Institute, a Johannesburg-based research and advocacy civil society organisation working on questions of state capability ( He holds a PhD in English and Comparative Literature from Columbia University in New York that was co-supervised in English, Anthropology and History. Among other publications, he is the co-editor of State Capture in South Africa: How and Why it Happened (2023, Wits University Press). He previously worked at University of Cape Town variously in History, English, Anthropology and the Centre for Law and society.