Free lunchtime talk: Humanitarianism and Its Pitfalls

You are invited to a free Lunchtime Soapbox talk entitled:

Humanitarianism and Its Pitfalls: Can doing good be bad? by Suren Pillay

The circulation of rumours that foreign nationals were to be attacked in the wake of the football World Cup in South Africa mobilised a certain section of the population and a variety of NGO’s to action against xenophobia. In his talk, Mr Pillay will interrogate the question: can the way in which we respond to social conflicts, like xenophobia, actually exacerbate the problem rather than address it?

Suren Pillay

Suren Pillay, senior lecturer in political studies at the University of the Western Cape, has been seconded to the HSRC as a senior research specialist in the Democracy and Governance programme. He holds an MPhil in anthropology from Columbia University in New York, where he is also completing his PhD, and an MA in development studies (cum laude) at the University of the Western Cape. His areas of research include the relationship between violence and state formation; the ways in which race, culture, and identity politics intersect in the fashioning of political communities, and developments in democracy and citizenship in postcolonial Africa.

A delicious and affordable (from R35) brown bag lunch will be on sale at the venue.

Date: Thursday 19 August

Time: 12:45 for 13:00pm

Venue: Lobby Books, Cape Town Democracy Center, 6 Spin Street

Contact: Andreas Spath at aspath@idasa.org.za or 021 467 7606

Parking options:
Street parking in the area is safe and will cost you R4.50 per hour.
Parking garages open to the public in the area include:

  • Plein Park (Plein Street; to get to the entrance, turn off Plein Street into Barrack Street and then into Corporation Street).
  • Mandela Rhodes Place (entrance in Burg Street, off Wale Street).

Free lunchtime talk: Greening Walmart

You are invited to a free Lunchtime Soapbox talk entitled:

Walmart – how the world’s biggest corporation went deep green by Robert Zipplies

From being perceived as the major corporate villain, Walmart is now counted as an environmental leader. What brought about this profound change? This presentation offers a fascinating insight into why the world’s largest corporation decided to embark on the green journey and how they are going about it.

Robert Zipplies

If Walmart were a country, it would be the 17th largest economy – roughly on par with Switzerland and Sweden. With more than 2 million employees and over 100,000 suppliers, Walmart’s progress is now setting a global benchmark for sustainability performance in the corporate sector and provides an indication of how profoundly corporate attitudes towards environmental issues have changed.

The case study, amongst other things, investigates:

  • the reasons for Walmart’s profound change,
  • how they developed their sustainability strategy and why they made it core to their business strategy,
  • what activities they are undertaking to green their operations and supply chain,
  • how they are working internally to change their culture, and
  • how they are collaborating with other stakeholders to enable their progress.

“It’s beyond encouragement – my challenge to you is to move sustainability to the front burner if you don’t already have it there.”
Mike Duke, Walmart CEO, addressing employees and suppliers in 2009.

This presentation will provide valuable insights and ideas for your sustainability strategy and activities.

Robert Zipplies consults independently to corporations wishing to deepen their sustainability commitment. He is the editor of the recently released book, Bending the Curve – Your guide to tackling climate change in South Africa and has been made an Indalo Yethu (South Africa’s Environmental Campaign) Eco-ambassador for his environmental work. He is a regular speaker on a range of sustainability-related topics, and is a board member of the climate change NGO, Project 90 by 2030. He has a BSc in Mechanical Engineering (UCT), an MSc in Industrial Engineering (Wits) and an MBA (Rotterdam).

A delicious and affordable (from R35) brown bag lunch will be on sale at the venue.

Date: Thursday 29 July

Time: 12:45 for 13:00pm

Venue: Lobby Books, Cape Town Democracy Center, 6 Spin Street

Contact: Andreas Spath at aspath@idasa.org.za or 021 467 7606

Parking options:
Street parking in the area is safe and will cost you R4.50 per hour.
Parking garages open to the public in the area include:

  • Plein Park (Plein Street; to get to the entrance, turn off Plein Street into Barrack Street and then into Corporation Street).
  • Mandela Rhodes Place (entrance in Burg Street, off Wale Street)

Free lunchtime talk: Slow Food

You are invited to a free Lunchtime Soapbox talk entitled:

Slow Food: Reconnecting with our food by Dax Villanueva

Cities are remarkably good at distancing consumers from the food they are eating. What is the impact of this? Our health suffers, the environment suffers and animals suffer. We need to reconnect with our food. We need to be aware of where it comes from and how it was produced so that we can change this system.

As consumers we have the power to change the way things are done. The slow food movement is 20 years old and convivia around the world dedicate themselves to reconnecting people with their food and those that produce it.

Dax Villanueva only became aware of the moral deficiencies and unsustainability of first world living recently. In this time he has slowly been making the transition from slacktivist to activist. He is passionate about educating others and he does this through is blog, Relax with Dax, and his involvement in the Slow Food Mother City convivium.

A delicious and affordable (from R35) brown bag lunch will be on sale at the venue.

Date: Thursday 22 July

Time: 12:45 for 13:00pm

Venue: Lobby Books, Cape Town Democracy Center, 6 Spin Street

Contact: Andreas Spath at aspath@idasa.org.za or 021 467 7606

Parking options:
Street parking in the area is safe and will cost you R3.50 per hour.
Parking garages open to the public in the area include:

  • Plein Park (Plein Street; to get to the entrance, turn off Plein Street into Barrack Street and then into Corporation Street).
  • Mandela Rhodes Place (entrance in Burg Street, off Wale Street)

Free Lunchtime talk: “Palestine”

You are invited to a free Lunchtime Soapbox talk entitled:

Scenes of a graphic nature – Some thoughts on Joe Sacco’s landmark graphic novel Palestine

Joe Sacco's graphic novel Palestine

The creators of Coloureds, Andre and Nathan Trantraal, talk about seeing the smaller pictures inside the bigger picture with reference to Joe Sacco’s influential graphic novel Palestine.

Cape Town cartoon wizz kids Nathan and Andre Trantraal

Come and join us for a fascinating insider’s perspective on one of the most admired graphic novels of our time.

A delicious and affordable (from R35) brown bag lunch will be on sale at the venue.

Date: Thursday 15 July

Time: 12:45 for 13:00pm

Venue: Lobby Books, Cape Town Democracy Center, 6 Spin Street

Contact: Andreas Spath at aspath@idasa.org.za or 021 467 7606

Parking options:
Street parking in the area is safe and will cost you R3.50 per hour.
Parking garages open to the public in the area include:

  • Plein Park (Plein Street; to get to the entrance, turn off Plein Street into Barrack Street and then into Corporation Street).
  • Mandela Rhodes Place (entrance in Burg Street, off Wale Street)

Free lunchtime talk: Freedom Fone

You are invited to a free Lunchtime Soapbox talk entitled:

Freedom Fone – Community information via voice SMS by Brenda Burrell

Does your community need access to information but has limited or no access to the internet or email? Do you want to be able to share more information than 160 characters allows? Freedom Fone offers the possibility to extend the reach of information to citizens and groups presently excluded from the information loop because of lack of access to resources such as computers and the internet.

Freedom Fone is a project of the Kubatana Trust of Zimbabwe, a small, hard working group of information activists. This innovative information and communication tool takes the mobile phone and marries it with audio voice menus and SMS.  Freedom Fone is also used in the South African context. The free and open source software provides an exciting, far reaching medium – for information activists, service organisations and NGOs – to deliver vital information on demand, to communities who need it most.

A delicious and affordable (from R35) brown bag lunch will be on sale at the venue.

Date: Thursday 8 July

Time: 12:45 for 13:00pm

Venue: Lobby Books, Cape Town Democracy Center, 6 Spin Street

Contact: Andreas Spath at aspath@idasa.org.za or 021 467 7606

Parking options:
Street parking in the area is safe and will cost you R3.50 per hour.
Parking garages open to the public in the area include:

  • Plein Park (Plein Street; to get to the entrance, turn off Plein Street into Barrack Street and then into Corporation Street).
  • Mandela Rhodes Place (entrance in Burg Street, off Wale Street)

Free lunchtime talk: How to learn an African language quickly

You are invited to a free Lunchtime Soapbox talk entitled:

Thatha machance, thetha nama-millions! Take the chance, speak with millions! How to learn an African language very quickly by Tessa Dowling

Tessa Dowling is Adjunct Professor of African Languages at UCT’s School of Languages and Literatures and her presentation is aimed at showing people how to start their own African language learning process without spending much money or effort.

Tessa Dowling

With just a few simple ideas and tips you could start thetha/khuluma/bua-ing in a day and eventually know enough to hear the gossip going on all around you and to say something quirky and fun every day in another language.

A delicious and affordable (from R35) brown bag lunch will be on sale at the venue.

Date: Thursday 1 July

Time: 12:45 for 13:00pm

Venue: Lobby Books, Cape Town Democracy Center, 6 Spin Street

Contact: Andreas Spath at aspath@idasa.org.za or 021 467 7606

Parking options:
Street parking in the area is safe and will cost you R3.50 per hour.
Parking garages open to the public in the area include:

  • Plein Park (Plein Street; to get to the entrance, turn off Plein Street into Barrack Street and then into Corporation Street).
  • Mandela Rhodes Place (entrance in Burg Street, off Wale Street)