Research Areas

Our research activities and structures are closely aligned with South Africa’s national development priorities.  The HSRC’s integrated research programmes provide single points of entry – complete with a critical mass of researchers – for interdisciplinary and problem orientated research in the following research areas:

Democracy, Governance and Service Delivery

Economic Performance and Development

Education and Skills Development


Human and Social Development

Population Health, Health Systems and Innovation

Centre for Science, Technology and Innovation Indicators

A cross-cutting entity, Research Use and Impact Assessment, seeks to extend and enhance the use and impact of scientific research from the HSRC and other sources of research; and to manage the HSRC’s relationships, reputation and brand.  Our mandate is to inform the effective formulation and monitoring of government policy; to evaluate policy implementation; to stimulate public debate through the effective dissemination of research based data and fact-based research results; to foster research collaboration; and to help build research capacity and infrastructure for the human sciences. 

Research outputs include reports for users, occasional papers and scholarly articles in peer-reviewed journals, books and a news magazine that allows us to improve the public understanding of science. These are disseminated in print through the HSRC Press, through policy briefs aimed at government and policy-makers, and through the media, including social media, our website, conferences and extensive research networks.