Kate Philip

Position: Researcher, TIPS
Institution: Advisor to the Presidency on Short-term Strategies for Employment Creation
Expertise: Development strategy, Inequality, Enterprise development, Public employment

Kate is a development strategist with over 20 years experience in social and economic policy development and implementation. In the course of her professional career, she has worked for South Africa’s largest trade union, the National Union of Mineworkers; established and run an employment creation NGO, the Mineworkers Development Agency; she has worked for a major international donor agency, DFID; and she has lead a strategy process on inequality and economic marginalization commissioned by the South African Presidency, while based in policy and research NGO Trade and Industrial Policy Strategies (TIPS). The overarching framework for this strategy was approved by the South African Cabinet in January 2009. As part of this strategy process, Philip initiated and programme-managed the pilot phase of the Community Work Programme (CWP), to demonstrate how the concept of a minimum employment guarantee could be adapted and applied in the South African context. In President Zuma’s State of the Nation Address in June 2009, he committed government to ‘fast-tracking’ the CWP, which achieved a participation rate of over 55,000 people by the end of its pilot phase. From 1 April 2010, the CWP has been institutionalized in the Department of Co-operative Governance and Traditional Authority.

In 2010, Philip was part of the design team of a course entitled ‘Mitigating a Jobs Crisis: Innovations in Public Employment Programmes,’ now being offered by the International Training Centre of the International Labour Organisation (ITC-ILO) in Turin; she has also been hosted at the ILO for the last few months by the Employment Intensive Investment Programme in the ILO in Geneva, for research purposes.

Philip’s doctoral thesis was entitled: ‘Enterprise on the Margins: Making Markets Work for the Poor?’ and explores the limits and potential of market development approaches. It explores the notion that markets are social constructs, and asks how they might be constructed differently - to achieve different social, economic and distributive outcomes.