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Ruth Castel-Branco

Dr Ruth Castel Branco manages the Future of Work(ers) research project at the Southern Centre for Inequality Studies, University of the Witwatersrand, South Africa. She holds a PhD in Sociology from the University of the Witwatersrand. Previously, she worked as national coordinator for social and maternity protection at the International Labour Organization in Mozambique, organiser for DC Jobs with Justice in the United States and the 50 Years is Enough Network. Her research interests include social protection and the redistributive role of the state, (informal) worker organising and workers' rights, structural transformation and the changing nature of work.


  • 2020–2021
    Research Manager, Southern Centre for Inequality Studies
  • 2018–2020
    Lecturer, University of the Witwatersrand
  • 2013–2015
    Project Coordinator, Social Protection, International Labour Office


  • 2021 
    University of the Witwatersrand, PhD
  • 2012 
    University of Kwa-Zulu Natal, MA
  • 2005 
    University of Wisconsin-Madison, BA


  • 2021
    Improvising an e-State: the Struggle over Cash Transfer Digitalization in Mozambique, Development and Change
  • 2021
    The Contradictions of Formalization: Domesticity and Paid Domestic Work in Mozambique and Angola, e-Cadernos
  • 2021
    “Se alguém está cansado de viver”: A economia informal, o Estado e a segurança social, IESE

Grants and Contracts

  • 2021
    Inequality Fellowship
    Funding Source:
    Open Society Foundation
  • 2015
    PhD Fellowship
    Funding Source:
    International Centre for Development and Decent Work

Professional Memberships

  • African Studies Association
  • Instituto Estudos Sociais e Económicos
  • Council for the Development of Social Science Research in Africa
  • South African Sociological Association


Inequality Fellow, Open Society Foundations