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Senior Researcher: Research Alliance for Disaster and Risk Reduction, Stellenbosch University

Robyn is a researcher with more than 20 years’ applied research experience. She has worked as a researcher and analyst in the private, non-governmental and academic sectors, and has experience in social and development research, policy analysis and training and education, both in South Africa and elsewhere in Africa.

She obtained a BA Honours degree in Anthropology from Durham University in the United Kingdom and a Master’s of Social Science in Development Studies from the University of KwaZulu-Natal. Over the course of her professional career, she has worked on issues as diverse as land reform, crime and victimization, human trafficking and people’s knowledge and attitudes towards HIV/AIDS and the epidemic’s implications for human security.

Following almost a decade of developmentally-oriented research in the private and NGO sectors, she became interested in the linkages between development and disasters, and returned to university in the mid-2000s, obtaining a post-graduate degree in Disaster Risk Science from the University of Cape Town, and later her doctorate, which focused on flooding in informal settlements and low-cost housing in Cape Town.

She convenes RADAR’s MPhil programme in Disaster Risk Science and Development and a Postgraduate Diploma in Disaster Risk Studies at Stellenbosch University.


  • 2013–present
    Senior lecturer, Stellenbosch University: Research Alliance for Disaster and Risk Reduction


  • 2013 
    University of Cape Town, Phd