Societal power shifts and changing social identities in South Africa: workplace implications

Lize Booysen


The enormous social, economic and political transformation South Africans have experienced especially over the past 12 years, since the systematic dismantling of apartheid in the era of social and economic reconstruction, has brought about numerous societal and social identity changes. Due to these changes in social identity, societal norms and power shifts, major changes are occurring in the workplace, and societal level identity crises and conflicts are increasingly spilling over into the workplace. This article unpacks these social identity changes and power shifts on the political, social, economic and management levels, by employing social identity theory, self-categorisation theory and embedded intergroup theory, and highlights some resultant workplace implications.  

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Submitted: 20 February 2013
Published: 21 February 2013

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South African Journal of Economic and Management Sciences    |    ISSN: 1015-8812 (PRINT)    |    ISSN: 2222-3436 (ONLINE)