Economics and Transformation: Measurements, Models, Maths and Myths

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dc.contributor.author Wittenberg, Martin
dc.date.accessioned 2017-09-26T10:10:17Z
dc.date.available 2017-09-26T10:10:17Z
dc.date.issued 2017-09
dc.identifier.citation Wittenberg, M. (2017). Economics and Transformation: Measurement, Models, Myths and Maths. Cape Town: SALDRU, UCT. (SALDRU Working Paper Number 211/DataFirst Technical Paper 39).
dc.identifier.isbn 978-1-928281-72-6
dc.identifier.uri http://hdl.handle.net/11090/887
dc.description Martin Wittenberg’s 2012 inaugural lecture is being published as a SALDRU working paper due to its important examination of “big picture” trends in poverty and inequality, which remain consistent five years later. The lecture draws on comprehensive research undertaken by SALDRU and DataFirst This is a joint SALDRU Working Paper and DataFirst Technical Paper. en_US
dc.description.abstract SALDRU and DataFirst have been at the forefront of measuring poverty and inequality in South Africa. We don’t however often enough try to sketch out the “big picture” as to why we do this and what we may have learned. Five years ago I tried to do this in my inaugural lecture. It turns out that everything said in that lecture is still relevant, if not more so. At the time of the lecture there were still some people who were under the impression that the warnings about the problems of unemployment and inequality were overblown. Eight days later the massacre at Marikana happened. I can’t claim to have foreseen it; nor did I have an inkling that my warning that we were sitting on a powder keg would be confirmed so rapidly. Although the material is still relevant, the text was designed for a public performance, one which connects to the old rituals and traditions of Universities. One way of reflecting on that was to structure the text like a classical symphony: after the tune-up (in the preamble), a fast movement, followed by a slow one, then a dance and a finale that goes back to themes raised in the intro. While traditions may shape what we do, I was trying to show that one can also innovate on them and given them new content. Furthermore drawing on the strengths in some of these traditions, in my case the memory of my father, is important in moving forward. At the time none of us knew that he was suffering from pancreatic cancer and that my inaugural would be his last major public engagement. While a record of the “performance” has been available for some time (it can be viewed on YouTube ) the text was never released, partially because I had intended to polish and expand on it. en_US
dc.language.iso en en_US
dc.relation.ispartofseries Saldru Working Papers;211
dc.subject Economics en_US
dc.subject Transformation en_US
dc.subject Measuring poverty and inequality en_US
dc.subject South Africa en_US
dc.title Economics and Transformation: Measurements, Models, Maths and Myths en_US
dc.type Working Paper en_US


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