Strategic Focus Areas

In keeping with the University of Pretoria’s Regulations for the Establishment and Operation of Centres, Centres, Institutes and Bureaux and in line with the mission statement outlined above, the Centre will organise its activities around Research and Community Engagement.




As should be evident from the above, research will constitute the primary activity of the Centre for the Future of Work at the University of Pretoria. Furthermore, in alignment with the University’s 2025 strategic plan, the Centre will focus on strengthening the University of Pretoria’s research and international profile by:

Serving as a hub for collaborative convergence research through transdisciplinary approaches, with research projects and activities involving a wide community of academics, students and employers in South Africa, the rest of Africa and further afield;

Engaging in and facilitating partnerships with private and public sector employers and labour as contributing stakeholders to provide various forms of mutually beneficial collaboration, including the co-creation of curricula (both formal and informal); and also driving efforts based on the Centre’s research to assist employers to prepare for the rapid changes that will characterise the future world of work;

Recruiting researchers, research associates, postgraduate students and post-doctoral fellows with appropriate research skills and a demonstrable interest in research on the future of work

Social Responsibility

As intimated above, while the Centre will be established to advance generative research on the future of work and while the outcome of this research will be harnessed to assist in the curriculum transformation endeavours of UP (and, potentially, other partner universities), the research and its outcomes will also be aimed at advancing the University’s commitment to making a substantive contribution to the South African and African economies as well as to the broader social good. Myklebust and Smidt (2021) argue that the levels of upskilling and re-skilling of workforces that will be required in the immediate future are enormous and they correctly point out that universities and entities such as the Centre for the Future of Work can play a critical role in these endeavours – and thereby make a meaningful contribution to the economy.
It is the afore-mentioned gap that the Centre for the Future of Work would wish to address, for the sake of our students as well as to give substance to the University’s commitment to its social responsibility obligations.




The income model of the Centre will eventually involve the following income streams aimed at financial sustainability:
  • Research grants (in recent months there have been an increase in calls for proposals on the future of work by a range of philanthropic and science foundations)
  • Contract research (for the private and public sector)
  • Research reports (bi-annual or annual)
  • Workshops and short learning programmes for public and private sector entities
  • Commercialisation of software products developed by the Centre
  • Corporate sponsorships


Published by Refilwe Mabula

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