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Dr Peter White awarded an NRF fellowship
28 September 2018

Dr Peter White of the Department of Religion Studies in UP’s Faculty of Theology and Religion has been nominated as a fellow for the 2018 Tuks Young Research Leader Programme.  The programme is an initiative of Future Africa and the University of Pretoria.  It aims to grow early career academics in the areas of thought leadership, team development, engagement and collaboration, with the intention of enabling them to solve the complex issues that face society.  The programme aims to form a community within the University of likeminded young researchers who possess qualities that will contribute to the university becoming, and leading, as a research-intensive university.

The leadership programme:

  • identifies early career academics who have demonstrated leadership potential and an interest in developing key leadership skills;
  • supports them to apply the acquired skills to projects that are relevant to the development of their academic careers and its impact;
  • creates a network of early career academic leaders at University of Pretoria, spanning across disciplinary boundaries; and
  • advances a curriculum for academic leadership development, which can be utilised by others.

Dr White is in the Department of Religion Studies in the Faculty of Theology and Religion.  He currently holds the position of Senior Postdoctoral Research Fellow and specialises in missiology, pentecostalism, leadership, religion and human rights. His research focus is on pentecostalism and its influence on the socio-economic and religious sphere in Africa with special reference to Ghana. He sometimes focuses on issues of leadership, religion and development, religion and health, religion and human rights, as well as religion and media.

In Dr White’s opinion, the rise in African pentecostalism is one of the most important and significant events in religious studies in Africa and there is an important research gap in areas of theological, anthropological and social studies to describe and understand this phenomenon. This project brings the expertise of a West-African scholar into the equation and has increased interest and contribute towards a better understanding of Pentecostalism in Africa.  Through this project, he has been able to publish twenty peer reviewed articles in accredited journals and sees himself as versatile researcher who can work with other scholars in addressing issues related to the development of Africa, more especially in the area of Religion, Leadership, Development, Gender and Human rights.

Dr White sees the future of his research at UP as producing researches of international dimension which will also contribute to the Faculty of Theology and Religion’s vision of Africanisation and internationalisation. This will be done through collaborative research with other scholars both within Africa and beyond.

- Author Peter White and Dana Mahan
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Dr Peter White