About this site

This resource is hosted by the Nelson Mandela Centre of Memory, but was compiled and authored by Padraig O’Malley. It is the product of almost two decades of research and includes analyses, chronologies, historical documents, and interviews from the apartheid and post-apartheid eras.

James, Wilmot Godfrey

Click here for list of interviews

Dr Wilmot James is Chairman of the Immigration Advisory Board of South Africa. He ended his period as an executive director, responsible for social cohesion and integration research, at the Human Sciences Research Council, in October 2004. He is a Trustee of the Ford Foundation of New York, the Impumelelo Innovations Awards Programme and the US-SA Centre for Leadership and Public Values. He is a non-executive director of Sanlam Limited, Sanlam Life, Media24 and Via Afrika Books.

Dr James holds a PhD in Sociology from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and is the author or editor of 12 books, the most recent being What Holds us Together: Social Cohesion in South Africa (with David Chidester & Philip Dexter eds.) and Nelson Mandela: From Freedom to the Future (with Kader Asmal & David Chidester eds.).

Dr James is formerly a Dean of Humanities of the University of Cape Town; Executive Director of the Institute for Democracy of South Africa (IDASA) and Professor of Sociology at the University of Cape Town. He has held visiting positions at Yale University, Indiana University, American Bar Foundation and, as an Associate Editor, the Cape Argus. He most recently was Moore Visiting Professor of History and Sociology, California Institute of Technology.

Dr James was head of electoral information for the Western Cape during South Africa's first democratic elections in 1994; Chairman of the Green Paper Task Team on International Migration; Member of the White Paper Task Team on Immigration; Project leader of the Values in Education Initiative, Ministry of Education; and Member of the Task Team on Electoral Reform in South Africa, Department of Home Affairs.

Dr James is married to Delecia Forbes and has two daughters, Gabriele (13) and Isabella (2), and lives in Cape Town, South Africa.

This resource is hosted by the Nelson Mandela Centre of Memory, but was compiled and authored by Padraig O’Malley. Return to the Nelson Mandela Centre of Memory site.