The mission of the Optentia Research Unit is to develop and organise knowledge for the optimal expression of individual, social and institutional potential, with a specific interest in the African context. The research unit utilises the inputs from multiple disciplines: Economics, Educational Sciences, Employment Relations, Human Resource Management, Information Technology, Philosophy, Psychology (Work and Organisational Psychology, Educational Psychology, Counselling Psychology, and Clinical Psychology), Risk Management, Social Anthropology, Social Work, and Sociology. We study the optimisation of the potential of people and institutions by focusing on pathways from precarity to capability and optimal functioning.

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Recent news

New book on a scholarly approach to student success

North-West University’s Centre for Teaching and Learning recently published the second volume on a scholarly approach to student success in higher education. Optentia researcher, Dr Mariette Fourie, originally started the pr...Read article

NWU Faculty of Humanities set to host inaugural digital humanities conference

You may be wondering what exactly digital humanities is.  In simple terms, it is the application of computing tools and methods to traditional humanities fields such as linguistics, literature, music, history and philosophy.<...Read article

How Africa can develop a society for all ages

Africa is and will be the continent with the youngest population globally for the foreseeable future. In the meantime, many more people in Africa are living increasingly longer. This finding is based on demographic trends on the c...Read article

Employees’ Perceived Fear of Automation: Which Age Groups Are Most Affected?

The speed of automation, accelerated by the COVID pandemic, prompts the question as to what will happen to occupations. Some are predicted to significantly change, while others may even disappear. The World Economic Forum estimate...Read article

Newsletter, April 2022

Upcoming events



Notice of Submission
Master's and PhD; Submission: 26 September-30 November 2022



Visit to the NWU: M. Bucher



Africa's long-term trajectory
Register: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/long-term-forecasts-on-the-fu...