SASPRI comprises a group of academics and researchers committed to the generation of high quality research, both qualitative and quantitative, to help generate the evidence base for the implementation of evidence informed policy.

Mr David Avenell is a Director and SASPRI’s GIS specialist.

Dr Helen Barnes is a Director and Senior Research Fellow whose research interests are in the areas of poverty and deprivation, particularly with regard to children, and also tax-benefit microsimulation.

Ms Katrin Gasior is a Research Fellow whose research interests are in tax-benefit microsimulation.

Dr David McLennan is a Director and Senior Research Fellow whose main interests are in small area deprivation and small area measures of segregation and inequality. He also has a keen interest in the relationship between crime and deprivation/inequality.

Prof Michael Noble CBE is a Director and Senior Research Fellow. He is Emeritus Professor of Social Policy at the University of Oxford in the UK, Emeritus Fellow of Green Templeton College at the University of Oxford. He is a Research Affiliate, Centre for Microsimulation and Policy Analysis, at the University of Essex. His main research interests are in poverty, deprivation, inequality, tax policy and social security policy particularly in sub-Saharan Africa. He specialises in quantitative research methods and tax-benefit microsimulation and is committed to evidence-informed policy making. 

Prof Gemma Wright is Executive Director of SASPRI. She is a Professor Extraordinarius at the Archie Mafeje Institute for Applied Social Policy Research at the University of South Africa (UNISA). She is a Research Affiliate, Centre for Microsimulation and Policy Analysis, at the University of Essex.She has a special interest in poverty, child poverty, social security policy and tax-benefit microsimulation.

Dr Wanga Zembe is a Director of SASPRI and a Specialist Scientist in Health Systems Research at the South African Medical Research Council .She has research experience in deprivation, child poverty and child health. Her main interests are research and teaching in Social Policy, specifically as this relates to poverty and inequality.

Dr Wiseman Magasela is the Founder and Executive Director of Clermont Analytics, a research, policy development, policy advisory, resourcing, social and community development firm. He is a Member of the Council of UNISA, former Special Adviser in the Ministry in the Presidency Responsible for Women and at the Ministry – Department of Social Development, and former Deputy Director General: Research and Policy Development in the Department of Social Development. Other past roles include Research Manager, Centre for the Analysis of South African Social Policy, University of Oxford, England, and Chief Researcher at the National Research Foundation. He has also lectured Sociology at the University of Natal (Durban) and the University of Fort Hare in South Africa.  

Dr Temba Sipho Masilela is an Associate Fellow of SASPRI. His research and advocacy interests traverse issues of intellectual history, translocality, capability triades, anticipatory governance, and communicative figurations. He is a director of the recently established non-profit Kghodlelela Community Association and previously worked as an executive in a public social sciences research organization and as a social development special adviser in government. In equal measure his experience encompasses the exile and post-liberation periods in South African history. 

Prof Phakama Ntshongwana is an Associate Fellow of SASPRI. She is a Professor in the Department of History and Political Studies at Nelson Mandela University. She is also the National Planning Commissioner for Social Protection at the South African Presidency. Her research interests include social policy in developing countries, social citizenship and identity. Her social security research work has had a gender focus, in particular experiences of women in receipt of the Child Support Grant in relation to their children, the labour market and their communities. She is developing this research further by exploring the role of government’s emergency economic and social relief measures to alleviate the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on low income families.

Prof Robert van Niekerk is an Associate Fellow of SASPRI. He is a professor in the Wits School of Governance at the University of the Witwatersrand. His research interests are in the institutional history, ideologies and understandings of social policy and social change in South Africa. He also has an interest in social policy in a post-apartheid South Africa – particularly polices aimed at overcoming inequality and developing social rights of citizenship and the “good society” – and the factors which account for success and failure in policy implementation.

Ms Christine Byaruhanga is a Research Associate with expertise in tax-benefit microsimulation and health economics.

Mr Jabulani Jele is is a Research Associate with research interests in GIS and spatial measures of deprivation and inequality.

Dr Faith Masekesa a Research Associate with research interests in microsimulation modelling and poverty and inequality research.

Ms Michell Mpike is a Research Associate.

Ms Avela Njwambe is a Research Associate with interests including issues of rurality, belonging, and gender, and she is dedicated in the alleviation of poverty, inequality and injustice in society.