South African higher education at the beginning of the new millennium: Realities, problems and challenges


The Chair, representatives of various stakeholder organisations and research and development agencies, invited guests from the donor community and media, members of the Council on Higher Education, colleagues and comrade

Welcome to this first Consultative Conference of the Council on Higher Education. I look forward to meeting all of you informally during the duration of the conference.

For the present, my task is to share with you, arising out of the exercise of producing the Annual Report for parliament, the CHE’s sense of the realities, key problems and challenges of South African higher education.

It is not my intention to read to you all 43 pages of Part 1 of the CHE Annual Report. That would be inviting a huge alcoholic drinks bill during cocktails later this evening. Nor is it my intention even to summarise the Annual Report. I believe that the Conclusion and the Executive Summary do a good job in this regard.

I want to take the Annual Report as read, and instead want to address in a somewhat different way from the Annual Report the key problems and challenges that we need to be putting our heads around if we are to realise the kind of higher education system that is called for by the White Paper of 1997.