Invitation: Francis Wilson Memorial Lecture

The University of Cape Town, SALDRU and DataFirst invite you to the second annual Francis Wilson Memorial Lecture on

How to build – and break – a capable state: structural reform and institution building in the democratic era” by Trevor Manuel


Date: Tuesday, 16 April 2024
Time: 18:00 SAST
Venue: Lecture Theatre 3, Kramer Law Building, Middle Campus, University of Cape Town
Format: Hybrid

Mr. Manuel had a distinguished career in public service, including serving as one of South Africa (and the world’s) longest-serving Ministers of Finance. During this tenure in government, he also served as Minister in the Presidency and as head of the National Planning Commission. Before 1994, Mr. Manuel was a stalwart of the anti-apartheid movement and an activist.

He is currently the Non-Executive Chairperson of Old Mutual and Trustee of the Allan & Gill Gray Philanthropies. He is also a senior advisor to the Rothschild Group and Deputy Chairperson of Rothschild SA and a board member of several companies.

Amongst many international posts, he has chaired the International Monetary Fund’s Development Committee, served as Special Envoy for Development Finance for UN Secretaries-General Kofi Annan and Ban Ki-Moon, and served on the Commission for Africa and the task team on Global Public Goods. In 2011 he became a Co-chair of the Transitional Committee of the Green Climate Fund, a UN fund to help poorer nations combat and adapt to climate change. Mr. Manuel has received numerous honorary doctorates and awards, being named Africa Finance Minister of the Year in 2007.

Francis Wilson was the founding Director of the Southern Africa Labour and Development Unit (SALDRU) and of DataFirst, and was among the most pre-eminent economic researchers of his time. His work, combined with a strong social conscience, made him a leading voice for economic justice in apartheid South Africa, exposing the hardship and poverty caused by the migrant labour system and the mining industry. He spearheaded the first nationally representative survey of South Africa and was a fierce proponent of open data.

For any queries relating to the lecture email

View the flyer.

For in-person attendance, register here. Refreshments will be served after the lecture.

For online attendance, click here.