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Journal of the Southern African Institute of Mining and Metallurgy

On-line version ISSN 2411-9717
Print version ISSN 0038-223X

J. S. Afr. Inst. Min. Metall. vol.111 n.4 Johannesburg Apr. 2011




The gender and racial transformation of mining engineering in South Africa



J.A. Cruise

John Cruise Mining (Pty) Ltd




With the end of the official apartheid legislation in the early 1990s, South Africa was heralded as a non-racial country. However, racial awareness has been reintroduced into the country with the Affirmative Action and Black Economic Empowerment legislation. Gender and racial transformation are the current order of the day. All organizations are required to reflect in their make-up the demographics of the population as soon as possible. Scorecards have been drawn up to measure the rate of transformation for gender and race in organizations.
The mining industry in South Africa has been in the forefront of this transformation legislation and scorecards.
This paper seeks to show the effect of gender and racial transformation on mining engineering education and professionalism by analysing the changing demographics of graduating mining students at both the South African universities offering a degree in mining engineering, the professional registration of mining engineers with the Engineering Council of South Africa (ECSA), and the membership of the Southern African Institute of Mining and Metallurgy (SAIMM), the vocational institute for mining engineers.
It also demonstrates the absurdity of gender and racial quotas based solely on the demographics of the current population of the country.
This paper shows the degree to which mining engineering has transformed in both gender and race.



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1. Mines and Works Act,1911 (Act No.12 of 1911)        [ Links ]

2. Mines and Works Amendment Act,1926 (Act No. 25 of 1926)        [ Links ]

3. Mines and Works Amendment Act,1956 (Act No. 27 of 1956)        [ Links ]

4. Professional Engineers' Act,1968 (Act No.81 of 1968)        [ Links ]

5. Engineering Profession of South Africa Act,1990 (Act No.114 of 1990)        [ Links ]

6. Engineering Profession Act, 2000 (Act No.46 of 2000)        [ Links ]

7. Constitution and By-laws of the Southern African Institute of Mining and Metallurgy (adopted 2000)        [ Links ]

8. CAWOOD, F.T. Head of Mining School, University of the Witwatersrand. Personal communication        [ Links ]

9. WEBBER-YOUNGMAN, R.C.W. Head of Mining Department, University of Pretoria. Personal communication        [ Links ]

10. PIENAAR, J.C. Manager Registration, Engineering Council of South Africa. Personal communication        [ Links ]

11. LANDMAN, G.VR. President of the Southern African Institute of Mining and Metallurgy. Draft SAIMM Strategy Position Paper I - Demographic Compilation of Membership-September 2010.         [ Links ]

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