Mzingaye Brilliant Xaba

Post-doctoral fellow

Dr Mzingaye Brilliant Xaba earned his Masters degree in Sociology from Rhodes University and completed his PhD as the same institution, focusing on land restitution in South Africa. His research interests include poverty, social grants, investments and local development, land reform and politics.
His PhD focused on the developmental impacts of land restitution in the Eastern Cape South Africa. He is of the view that land reform debates and processes should not just be solely focused on the land acquisition problems, but much more emphasis must be on what happens when land has been identified, gazzetted and transferred to beneficiaries, in terms of post-settlement support. His work has been published by The Conversation, The Thinker, Africa Insight Journal, African Review of Sociology and South African Labour Bulletin. He has also written book chapters on mining and development, as well as on land reform.

His current research in the Karoo focuses on the developmental and environmental impacts of investments (development projects) and the lived realities of local people. His aim is to capture the voices of local people who are meant to be beneficiaries of such investments (development projects). Such development projects include renewable energy, astronomy, land reform, as well as the proposed shale-gas and uranium mining. His position is that developmental projects should be evaluated largely through capturing the voices and lived realities of local people, than solely using economic and quantitative terms.

Keywords: local people, local development, environment, livelihoods, land reform