The mission of the Optentia Research Focus Area is to develop and organise knowledge for the optimal expression of individual, social and institutional potential, with specific interest in the African context. The research programme utilises the inputs from various disciplines in the social sciences, including Psychology, Industrial/Organisational Psychology, Human Resource Management, Educational Psychology, Sociology, Educational Sciences, Employment Relations, and Social Work.

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Recent news

Prof. Jaco Hoffman invited to Ege University in Turkey

Prof. Jaco Hoffman was invited to Ege University, Izmir, Turkey to contribute to the First International Symposium on Arts and Humanities (EGE-ISAH) with the theme International Migration and Migrant Experience throughout History,...Read article

Creating solutions to tackle Africa’s youth unemployment

Today, youth unemployment is one of the most pressing challenges in Africa. According to the World Bank, youths make up 60% of all of Africa’s unemployed. Over the next three decades, about 15 to 20 million young people will...Read article

National Research Foundation rating for Prof. Ansie Fouche

Prof. Ansie Fouché recently received a rating from the National Research Foundation in South Africa. But who is Prof. Ansie and what are her interests?

Prof. Ansie studied Social Work and obtained her first d...Read article

Studying and developing capabilities at work

In his book “Hope after state capture”, Mcebisi Jonas (2019) analysed the economic and political landscape in South Africa. He argues against a system which places politics at the centre of policy-making and implementa...Read article

Newsletter, December 2019

Upcoming events



Inaugural lecture: Prof. Rens van de Schoot
Utrecht University, the Netherlands



Human Research Ethics Training
Time: 08:00-16:30; Vanderbijlpark Campus



Ethics Application Process: NWU-HREC
Time: 08:00 -15:00; Presenter: Prof Wayne Towers; Registrations: htt...

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