Imraan Buccus is a Senior Research Associate at ASRI. Over the next year he will be writing a series of opinion pieces that will appear fortnightly in the national media; with the intent of compiling his contributions into a book at year-end. Imraan is the academic director of a university study abroad program on political transformation and concurrently a Research Fellow in the School of Social Sciences at UKZN. Imraan is also editor of Al Qalam. He is a newspaper columnist and is often called upon by television and radio stations to offer political analysis. Imraan is widely published, in academic journals and book chapters, in the area of participatory democracy, poverty and civil society. Buccus is the former editor of Critical Dialogue, a journal of Public Participation in review. He has presented extensively at academic conferences around the world. His last paper entitled, ‘ Democratic transitions and liberation movements in power: a closer look at the ANC’ was presented at the African Studies conference in San Diego, California in December. Buccus was a Ford Foundation PhD Research Fellow at the Centre for International Development Issues, at Radboud University, Nijmegen in The Netherlands. He was Open Society Foundation Media Fellow twice in recent years, and in 2009 he appeared on the prestigious Mail & Guardian list of South Africa’s 200 Leading Young South Africans. Imraan has experience in the civil society sector, having served in research and policy NGOs for many years. During this time, he was involved in a number of international research projects and co-authored the National Framework on Public Participation for the South African government. During his time at the Centre for Public Participation, he led an initiative to bring policy making spaces closer to ordinary people and also led a project to assess the state of participatory democracy in Namibia. He has wide ranging experience working with various donor agencies including the Ford Foundation, NiZA, EU, Kellogg Foundation and the Open Society Foundation. In the early 2000’s Buccus worked as academic coordinator of the Workers College, a progressive experiential education college for workers from the trade union movement, where he developed a passion for experiential education and its personal and academic developmental potential.