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Prof Stefan (BPS) van Eck


Position, academic & professional qualifications

Stefan van Eck holds the degrees BLC, LLB and LLD (Pret). The title of his LLD thesis is “Evaluering van die Nywerheidshofstelsel in die Suid-Afrikaanse Arbeidsreg” (Evaluation of the Industrial Court System in the South African Labour Law). He was Head: Department of Labour Law between 1 October 2007 and 31 December 2016. He was admitted as an attorney of the High Court (Transvaal Provincial Division) in 1997 and holds a National Research Foundation ranking.

Academic & professional experience

He joined the Department of Mercantile Law as an academic assistant in 1988. He was appointed as lecturer in 1989 and was promoted to senior lecturer in 1990, to associate professor in 1996 and to professor in 1998. He completed his articles as a candidate attorney at the University of Pretoria Legal Aid Clinic in 1996.

Teaching activities

Subjects he has taught include: Labour Law; Aspects of Law for Project Management; and Commercial Law. He is also course leader for short courses on Disciplinary Enquiries and Advanced Labour Law. He has presented lectures at the Université Paris Panthéon-Sorbonne and at Sydney Law School.  

Representative publications

  • “In the Name of ‘Workplace’ and ‘Majoritarianism’: Though Shalt Not Strike” (2017) Industrial Law Journal 1496-1510
  • “Minority Trade Unions and the Amendments to the LRA: Reflections on Thresholds, Democracy and ILO Conventions” (2016) Industrial Law Journal  763-778 (co-authored with Esitang)
  • “Automatically Unfair and Operational Requirement Dismissals: Making Sense of the 2014 Amendments” (2016) PELJ  (19) 1-30 (co-authored with Newaj)   
  • “Employment Agencies: Are South Africa’s Recent Legislative Amendments Compliant with the International Labour Organisation’s Standards?”  (2016) SA Merc LJ 285-310 (co-authored with Aletter)
  • “Claims Against Employees: Interpretation and Application of Section 34 of the Basic Conditions of Employment Act 75 of 1997” (2015) THRHR 476-487 (co-authored with Diedericks)
  • “Social Protection Afforded to Irregular Migrant Workers: Thoughts on the Southern Africa Development Community (with Emphasis on Botswana and South Africa) (2015) Journal for African Law 294-316 (co-authored with F Snyman)
  • Book: [email protected] (2015) (co-authors Van Niekerk A, Christianson M, McGregor M, Smit, N) LexisNexis
  • “Revisiting Agency Work in Namibia and South Africa: Any Lessons from the Decent Work Agenda and the Flexicurity Approach?” (2014) The International Journal of Comparative Labour Law and Industrial Relations 49-66
  • “Are Magistrates Remediless in terms of Labour Law?” (2014) Industrial Law Journal 2700-2710 (co-authored with L Diedericks)
  • Van Eck BPS and Mathiba MK “Constitution Seventeenth Amendment Act: Thoughts on the Jurisdictional Overlap, the Restoration of Labour Appeal Court and the Demotion of the Supreme Court of Appeal” 2014 Industrial Law Journal 863-879 (co-authored with M  Mathiba)
  • “Employment Agencies: International Norms and Developments in South Africa” The International Journal of Comparative Labour Law and Industrial Relations (2012) 29-44.
  •  “Impact of Labour Law on South Africa’s New Corporate Rescue Mechanism” (2011) The International Journal of Comparative Labour Law and Industrial Relations (2011) Vol 27(1)  65-84 (co-authored with Joubert T and Burdette DA)
  • Chapter:  “Constitutionalisation of South African Labour Law: An Experiment in the Making" in Legal Protection of Worker’s Human Rights: Regulatory Changes and Challenges, (2010) Hart
  • Chapter: "Employment Equity in South Africa: The Socio-Political Realities and Legal Theoretical Justification" in Essays in Honor of Prof. Dr. Ali Güzel, (2010) 207-230, Beta (co-authored with A Eleveld)
  • "The Right to a Pre-dismissal Hearing in Terms of the Common Law: Are the Civil Courts Misdirected?" (2008) Obiter vol 29(3) 339-351
  • Chapter: “A Plea for the Development of Coherent Labour and Insolvency Principles on a Regional Basis in SADC Countries” in International Insolvency Law: Themes and Perspectives, Omar P (ed), (2008), 269-294, Ashgate Publishers (co-authored with Boraine A)
  • “Labour Dispute Resolution in the Public Service: The Mystifying Complexity Continues” Industrial Law Journal (2007)  Vol 28 793-803
  • “Administrative, Labour and Constitutional Law – A Jurisdictional Labyrinth” Industrial Law Journal Vol 27  (2006) 1987-1999 (co-authored with Jordaan-Parkin R)
  • Book: Principles of Labour Law 3rd ed (2005) (Translated Kompendium van Arbeidsreg) LexisNexis Butterworths (co-authored with Van Jaarsveld SR)
  • “The Constitutionalisation of Labour Law: No Place for a Superior Labour Appeal Court in Labour Matters: (Part 1) Background to the South African Labour Courts and the Constitution” (2005) Obiter Vol 26 (3) 549-560; “(Part II) Erosion of the Court’s Jurisdiction” (2006) Obiter Vol 27 (1) 20-32
  • “Fair Labour Practices in South African Insolvency Law” SALJ  (2004) 902-925 (co-authored with Boraine A and Steyn L)
  • “Compulsory Retirement and Discrimination on the Ground of Old Age” CILSA Vol XXXVII no 1 (2004) 40-64 (co-authored with Labuschage JTM, Bekker JC) 
  • “Dismissal of Executive Directors: Comparing Principles of Company Law and Labour Law” TSAR (2004) Vol 1 20-38 (co-authored with S Lombard S)

Areas of specialisation

His main areas of interest include labour dispute resolution institutions, protection of precarious workers, interaction between labour law and insolvency law and the influence of the Constitution on the evolution of labour and insolvency law.

Academic & professional memberships

He is Deputy President of the International Society of Labour and Social Security Law (Africa region); Chair of the African Labour Law Society; on the national committee of the South African Society for Labour Law (SASSLAW); and  member of the Law Society of South Africa (Northern Provinces Law Society).

Awards & bursaries

During 1995 the University of Pretoria’s Faculty of Law awarded the “Best Book of the Year” prize to Van Jaarsveld and Van Eck for Principles of Labour Law 2002 and during 1996 he was awarded the Best Student Award by the University of Pretoria Law School in preparation of Attorney’s Admittance Exam.


He acted as Deputy Dean of the Faculty of Law between April and June 1999, he served as Head: Department of Mercantile Law between 1 October 2007 and 31 December 2015 and he has served on the management board of the University of Pretoria Legal Aid Clinic since 2002. He was chairperson of the University of Pretoria Centenary Celebrations Committee.


Tel: +27 12 420-2363
Fax: +27 12 420-4010
E-mail: [email protected]

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Last edited by Elzet HurterEdit