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About Mandla

About Mandla

Mandla Isaacs is a political economist, strategist and facilitator.

His main areas of expertise are South African political economy, economic development, public policy and management, as well as strategy formulation and implementation.

His career has spanned over a decade in management consulting, including with McKinsey & Company’s Johannesburg office – where he has advised companies and governments across Africa on strategy and change management – as well as public service, where he spent four years as head of research and speechwriting for the Ministers of Home Affairs and Finance.

In national government, Mandla worked on economic, fiscal and immigration policy. As a government communicator, he wrote countless speeches for Parliament, investors, foreign diplomats and communities, among other stakeholders. He also wrote two budget speeches – the October 2017 Medium Term Budget Policy Statement Speech, and the February 2018 Budget Speech.

He regularly provides analysis on South African political economy and public affairs in online columns, on radio and TV.

He is currently a Mason Fellow and Mid-Career Master in Public Administration candidate at the Harvard Kennedy School of Government, focusing on economic develoment and political economy in developing countries. He holds a B.A. Political Science from Howard University (USA) and M.A. International Relations from the University of the Witwatersrand (South Africa).

He was a member of the first cohort of Obama Leaders: Africa (2018) and one of the Mail & Guardian’s Top 200 Young South Africans (2016, politics and government category).