An innovative and inclusive society

systemic chokes that trap us in inequality

Systemic chokes are the failures of policy, whether by design or consequence, that hinder the ability of individuals and communities to access and leverage innovation for human development. These often take the form of social ills such as binge drinking, gender-based violence, or of institutional systems that exclude marginalised groups from equitable access to welfare services and mobile data.

These systemic chokes are making it difficult to attain our country’s socio-economic development goals. So, our work aims to disrupt these trajectories of exclusion by reducing alcohol harm and gender-based violence, improving financing systems for social welfare services and removing the obstacle of high data costs for vulnerable groups.

There are ‘easy twists’ that keep being overlooked, which could open new pathways of development.

Much of the ‘choke’ on innovation in South Africa is psychological, due to years of marginalisation and disempowerment. We must find ways to stimulate people, organisations and communities to have a sense of pride and aspiration that will help to further unlock opportunity.

Our strategy is to advocate for the implementation of the “five best buys” of reducing alcohol harm, endorsed by the World Health Organisation (WHO). This entails strategic public advocacy, policy reform for alcohol harm reduction and an effective ban on alcohol advertising in South Africa.

In addition, we need to remove the obstacle of high data costs for vulnerable groups by delivering a solution to implement the new spectrum licence condition for mobile network operators. This will ensure access to free educational and socio-economic development content provided by public benefit organisations.

We also aim to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of welfare financing through the Sector Funding Policy, and to support initiatives that will improve the lived experience of women in South Africa.

Our goal is to remove the chokes that stifle innovation because some groups of people cannot fully participate in our economy and society.

What we are working on…

  • Implementing effective zero-rating of mobile content and services provided by public benefit organisations.
  • Modelling a comprehensive alcohol harms reduction strategy that the government can adopt.
  • Establishing a fair and effective interface between government and NGOs providing welfare services.
  • Demonstrating effective strategies to reduce gender-based violence in our country.

Vuyokazi Kana takes her daughter to attend a playgroup in Duncan Village. Groups like this can benefit from DGMT’s Social Welfare Financing Reform project.

Escaping the inequality trap requires a twist in our thinking.

Click the button above to read our full five-year strategy. Want a shorter version? Click here

Flagship projects addressing this opportunity

Civil society projects addressing this opportunity

These projects are by no means a comprehensive list of the work of civil society. This list represents a small selection of organisations that will be updated from time to time

Do you have a project that addresses this opportunity?

Helpful resources related to this opportunity

Opportunities to escape the inequality trap