Welcome to PLAAS

PLAAS does research, policy engagement, teaching and training about the dynamics of chronic poverty and structural inequality in Southern Africa, with a particular emphasis on the key role of restructuring and contesting land holding and agro-food systems in the subcontinent and beyond. Our focus is on the analysis of marginalised livelihoods in Southern Africa, especially of subsistence and smallholder farmers and farm workers, of coastal and inland artisanal fisheries and fishing communities; and of informal self employment in rural and urban areas.

Research Areas

Overview

Our research covers diverse areas, ranging from land and tenure reform,  land investment and agro-food restructuring, fisheries and ecosystem management, to social protection and informal self employment. In all this work, our key focus is on the causes and dynamics of inequality and structural poverty, on the economic and social agency of poor...

Latest Publication

Submission: Grocery Retail Sector Market Inquiry

Corporate retailers constitute an important element of the core of the South African food economy. Our submission argues that formal sector grocery retail is distorting food economies in ways which disadvantage other stakeholders of food value chains (Greenberg 2016). These effects are felt both upstream in the packaging, processing and...

Upcoming Events

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News

The dispute hovering over South Africa’s social grant system and threatening millions of vulnerable beneficiaries with nonpayment creates risks that go far beyond interrupting poor people’s access to desperately needed grants...