Lebohang Liepollo Pheko

Lebohang Liepollo Pheko is a distinguished political economist and senior research fellow at Trade Collective, a renowned think tank.

An experienced public and keynote speaker, she is also an engaging programme facilitator.

She has appeared on several flagship media platforms, including Asikhulume, Interface, The Globe, Question Time, Media Monitor, SABC news, E News, CNBC Africa, Special Assignment, Big Debate, African Views, Justice Factor, 3rd Degree, Judge for Yourself, Africa 360, Morning Live, Sunrise, Motswako and Carte Blanche, and is a regular contributor to Kaya FM, PowerFM, Lotus FM Radio Pulpit, SAFM, Radio Metro, YFM, Cape Talk, Lesedi, Thobela, Motsweding, Capricorn, PowerFM and Radio 2000.

She is also sought after on international platforms, including Al Jazeera, BBC TV news and BBC radio platforms, Turkish TV and CCTV. Moreover, she has contributed to multiple publications as a columnist and contributor, including Sunday Independent, Mail and Guardian, and the Sowetan.

With over 25 years of experience in cross-sector leadership, she is an accomplished activist scholar and public intellectual. Her research interests revolve around States & Afrikan nationhood, African trade relations, regional integration, globalisation in the context of African states, international relations, and coloniality.

Ms. Pheko’s work is primarily focused on building social movements and organisations across academia and popular movements, both locally and internationally. Her goal is to connect these movements to economic development and political discourses, and to support them in engaging meaningfully with debates and framing autonomous alternatives.

In all her work, she employs an intersectional frame of race, class, and gender. Her particular interest lies in examining Africa’s position concerning the international power matrix. Ms. Pheko has taught at various universities worldwide, including in South Africa, Zambia, Germany, Sweden, the UK, and the US, including Harvard.

Currently, her areas of specialisation include international trade and economics, political economy, feminist economics in the context of Covid-19, migration, and globalisation in the era of biopolitics, citizenship, and identity in the context of vaccine imperialism. As a Lancet Commissioner on Land and Reparation, she has been part of a global commission across ten countries that has researched and written on different aspects discussing potential forms of reparation.

Ms. Pheko is a global ambassador for the WellBeing Alliance and is currently doing extensive work in building on this approach that challenges GDP as the normative view of economic growth. In this regard, she co-led a six-country study on alternatives to GDP and different formulations of well-being and Well-being Economics.