Haroon Bhorat

Director, Development Policy Research Unit (DPRU), University of Cape Town

Haroon Bhorat is Professor of Economics in the School of Economics and Director of the Development Policy Research Unit (DPRU), at the University of Cape Town, South Africa. His research interests cover labour economics, poverty and income distribution. He has co-authored and co-edited a number of books on labour market and poverty issues in Africa, including co-editing The Oxford Companion to the Economics of South Africa. Haroon has published more than 150 academic journal articles, book chapters and working papers. He was recently appointed to the editorial advisory board of the World Bank Economic Review.

Haroon has his PhD in Economics through Stellenbosch University in South Africa. He studied at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and was a Cornell University research fellow. He holds the highly prestigious National Research Chair under the theme of Economic Growth, Poverty and Inequality: Exploring the Interactions for South Africa.

Haroon is a Non-resident Senior Fellow at the Brookings Institution affiliated to the Global Economy and Development Program, and the Africa Growth Initiative (AGI). He is also a Research Fellow at IZA, the Institute for the Study of Labour in Bonn, and an Honorary Research Fellow at the Human Sciences Research Council (HSRC). He is a member of the Board of the UNU World Institute for Development Economics Research (UNU-WIDER).

Haroon consults with international organizations such as the ILO, the UNDP, the World Bank, Ratings Agencies and emerging market fund managers. He was a member of the World Bank’s Advisory Board of the Commission on Global Poverty as well as a member of the Program Committee of the 2017 International Economic Association (IEA) World Congress. He is on the Advisory Committee of the joint United Nations and World Bank Policy Study on the role of Development in the Prevention of Violent Conflict. He is also a member of the UN/WHO’s High Level Commission on Health Employment and Economic Growth. Haroon previously served as a member of the UN Commission on Legal Empowerment of the Poor (LEP), and was Head of Research for the UN’s High-Level Panel on the Post-2015 Development Agenda.

Haroon has undertaken extensive work for several South African government departments – most notably the South African Department of Labour, the Presidency and the National Treasury. Haroon was recently appointed an Advisor on the South African Parliament’s High Level Panel on Acceleration of Change and Transformation. He was an economic advisor to two past Ministers of Finance, and previous Presidents Thabo Mbeki and Kgalema Motlanthe, formally serving on the Presidential Economic Advisory Panel.





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