Saleem Badat

Saleem Badat Bio

Saleem Badat is Research Professor in the History Department at the University of the Free State.

Between 2014 and 2019, he served as the first Program Director of International Higher Education & Strategic Projects at the Mellon Foundation in New York, directing grantmaking in the humanities to African and Middle East universities and institutions.

Prior to that he was vice-chancellor of Rhodes University.

In 1999, he was appointed the first CEO of the Council on Higher Education, the advisory body to the Minister of Higher Education & Training.

Saleem holds qualifications from the University of KwaZulu-Natal and Boston University, and a PhD in Sociology from the University of York.

He began his academic career at the University of the Western Cape, eventually becoming the Director of its Education Policy Unit.

Combining critical theory and practice, scholarship and activism, his concerns are structure and agency, reproduction and transformation, equity, redress, and social justice in and through universities, and the decolonization and transformation of universities.

Saleem’s books include Tennis, Apartheid and Social Justice (2023), The Forgotten People: Political Banishment under Apartheid (2012), Black Man, You are on Your Own (2009) and Black Student Politics, Higher Education and Apartheid (2000). He has authored some 60 book chapters, journal articles and research reports, and over 40 magazine and media opinion pieces.