Enterprising and Delivering a Better Quality of Life for All in South Africa: Progress and Prospects

Darma Mahadea


Delivering a better quality of life for all is a top goal of policy-makers in South Africa. Since the country has become a democracy in 1994, considerable progress has been made in empowering citizens with opportunities towards a better life and in providing them with education, housing and other social services. The expansion of state services has been facilitated by positive economic growth rates to finance the rising welfare redistributions. However, employment has lagged behind output growth, resulting in high levels of unemployment, income inequality and poverty, though this is partly eased by the social grants from the government. This paper examines the progress, challenges and prospects of delivering a better quality of life in South Africa. The prospects for the state sector to enhance the delivery of a better life through the welfare net are limited, while considerable backlogs in service delivery still exist. Some of the challenges, particularly to enhanced job creation and enterprising are associated with labour legislation, low entrepreneurial capacity and education limitations. Using data on unemployment, entrepreneurship (TEA) and real per capita GDP for the period 2000-2012, preliminary regression results indicate that unemployment is inversely related to the country’s TEA rates and growth in real GDP per head impacts significantly on reducing unemployment.

DOI: 10.5901/mjss.2014.v5n8p187

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Mediterranean Journal of Social Sciences ISSN 2039-9340(Print) ISSN 2039-2117(Online)

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