Expert talk

Brazil’s Populist Pendulum: The Outcome and Lessons

SAIIA Speakers Meeting

On 11 November, we invite you to join the Speakers Meeting hosted by the South African Institute for International Affairs (SAIIA) and the Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung (KAS). Prof Lyal White will unpack how populism has shattered Brazil's society into polarised camps and investigates what lessons can be anticipated for South Africa.


What can Brazil teach us about the dangers of populism?

As a taster on the topic, please visit Daily Maverick.

Brazilian’s have long referred to their homeland as “The country of the future, and it always will be.”

For decades Brazil has suffered from boom and bust economic cycles, polarised politics and a prevailing social paradox of ‘us’ and ‘them’ that has resulted in severe inequalities and periodic instability.

Recent developments have seen this scenario play out in the extreme, with some devastating results and a political outcome that has disrupted democracy in Brazil and is likely to have a lasting impact across the Latin American region.

This session will unpack recent developments in Brazil. It will look into what brought the country to this point and show how populism fails in Brazil, as it has done in other countries around the world. The discussion will touch on relevant developments in other Latin American, an outlook, and some comparative lessons on the impact of populism on countries like South Africa.

Our keynote speaker will be Prof Lyal White, founding director of the Johannesburg Business School (JBS) at the University of Johannesburg, South Africa. He is an associate professor for international business with a focus on comparative political economy and strategy in Africa, Asia and Latin America. He maintains a strong public presence in  scientific journals and books and frequently comments in the news media. Prof White has gathered working and research experience in various fields like investment, strategy, management and leadership as well as reforms, growth and development in Africa and Latin America. For further information on Prof White please klick here.

Please contact SAIIA to RSVP for this event:
Entrance is free to SAIIA members; R60 for visitors; R30 for students
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Mountain Club of South Africa, 97 Hatfield Street, Gardens, Cape Town


  • Prof Lyal White


    Brazil’s Populist Pendulum: The Outcome and Lessons: SAIIA Speakers Meeting
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    Christiaan Endres

    Christiaan Endres

    Project Manager +27 (11) 214 2900-204