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Doctoral Degrees (Sociology)

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    Access to health care and its determinants: the case of older persons in Chivi South district, Zimbabwe.
    (2024) Muzvidziwa, Evelyne.; Govender, Jayanathan Perumal.
    This study investigates the accessibility of health care services by older persons living in rural areas of Chivi South district. Access to health care has remained invisible in the scholarship in third-world countries like Zimbabwe. In this respect, the study explores the lived experiences of rural older persons residing in Chivi South, a research site embedded in political uncertainty and economic quagmire bedeviling Zimbabwe. This qualitative study was anchored on the interpretivist approach. A sample of 10 key informants and 20 older persons participated in key informant and in-depth interviews. This study established four key findings that will contribute immensely to the sociology of ageing in poor-resourced settings such as Zimbabwe. The cultural meaning of illness among older persons is essential in creating acceptable healthcare services. The consequences of not making a more enabling and inclusive environment for older persons will have a dire impact on healthcare delivery. Changes in policies that support more preventative health and social care globally instead of a reactive approach, which is wholly unsustainable for today’s ever-growing population. In Zimbabwe, older persons are often treated as a homogenous group with similar needs, leading to blanket interventions that overlook individual differences. This has resulted in poorly conceptualized and targeted assistance programs, failing to address local needs. Socially constructed narratives of successful ageing could inform the design of appropriate geriatric policies and programs to transform the healthcare needs of older persons in Zimbabwe. The key findings of the study show that the older persons living in the rural areas of Chivi South district experience challenges such as limited access to economic resources, traveling long distances to access healthcare services, inequalities in the healthcare service delivery system, reduced health status, limited availability, acceptability, and accessibility of healthcare services and inter alia. These challenges limit older persons from accessing much-needed healthcare services. The preeminent aim of this study is informed by the theoretical accounts of Penchansky and Thomas (1981) and Giddens (1984). The structures that frame rural healthcare provision ultimately function as key determinants of the nature and scope of healthcare service utilization, which propounded the structuration theory. Based on the subjective narratives of the research participants, the uniqueness of this study is anchored on its ability to offer a sociological foundation for developing innovative interventions and workable public policy options that support the aging population in African rural spaces. The study showed evidence of how social determinants of health may help reduce disparities in healthcare access for older persons in rural settings. Older persons, especially those residing in poor communities, have unique needs when addressing social health needs. The ageing population in Zimbabwe faces socio-economic predicaments and various challenges in the healthcare sector. It is particularly challenging to manage social connectedness in rural areas because of the issues around accessibility of health care, i.e., physical, financial, and societal barriers, making these multifaceted but crucially critical social determinants of health. Any efforts to improve the health and well-being of older rural persons address rural-urban disparities in healthcare needs and include a focus on the social determinants of health.
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    The relationship between black tax, poverty, and educational levels: a case study in Mbizana Local Municipality=Ubudlelwano phakathi kwebhekelelamndeni, ubuhlwempu, namazinga emfundo: ucwaningonto lukaMasipala wasekhaya waseMbizana.
    (2023) Ntakana, Unathi Mamsie.; Khan, Sultan.
    This study investigated the relationship between Black Tax, poverty, and educational levels at Mbizana Local municipality. The main assertion for this study is that black employed graduates are expected to pay back their family members and relatives for assisting them through higher education. These expectations may be spoken or unspoken. Employed black professionals fulfil these honour-bound commitments that are driven by different motives such as obligation, duty, Ubuntu, reciprocity, altruism, and sometimes coercion. They take care of their parents, pay siblings’ school fees, and ensure that all essential needs are taken care of in their homes; some go an extra mile of financially assisting their distant relatives. This sharing of one’s financial resources is generally termed Black Tax. This study employed the mixed methods approach which is infixed in the post-positivist worldview. The post-positivist worldview acknowledges that research is influenced by a researcher’s identity, and thus objectivity is pursued by admitting that there are biases that need to be addressed because complete objectivity is tainted by human errors and utilised instruments. The data was collected from 250 respondents using purposive sampling to potential Black Taxpayers of which 50 face-to-face interviews were undertaken. The data was then analysed using IBM Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS) version 28 on Windows 10. Data was presented in figures, tables, and charts. The findings of this study revealed that Black Tax fundamentally affects most black employees irrespective of their level of education or social class. Most black employed professionals are closely associated with unemployed and illiterate people which makes it extremely hard for them to focus on building generational wealth for their children. Black Taxpayers are encouraged to invest in financial literacy and actively involve their dependents in the process. Iqoqa Lolu cwaningo lwahlola ubudlelwano phakathi kokubhekelela abazali nomndeni (Black Tax), ubuhlwempu, kanye nezinga ngokwemfundo kuMasipala waseKhaya waseMbizana. Ukuqinisa okunqala kulolu cwaningo wukuthi abamnyama asebeqede ukufunda abasebenzayo balindeleke ukuba bondle imindeni yabo nezihlobo ngenxa yokubaxhasa kwabo ngesikhathi befunda ezikhungweni zemfundo ephakeme. Lokhu kwenziwa kushiwo noma kungashiwongo. Asebeqashiwe abamnyama bakwenza lokhu ngenxa yezizathu eziningi ezifana nokuzibophezela, ukuyibona ifanele ukwenziwa le nto, Ubuntu, ngokuvumelana, ukukhathalela umndeni kanti kwesinye isikhathi kuba yimpoqo. Banganakelela abazali, bakhokhele izingane zakwabo imali yesikole, futhi baqinisekise ukuthi zonke izidingongqangi ziyanakekelwa emakhaya akubo; abanye bayadlula kulokho basize nezihlobo ngemali. Lokhu kulekelela umndeni ngemali yakho sekwaphiwa igama lokuthi yiBlack Tax (ibhekelelamndeni). Lolu cwaningo lwasebenzisa indlelakwenza engxube egxile kuleyo ndlelakubuka eyipost-positivist. Indlelakubuka ipost-positivist igcizelela ukuthi kunethonya ocwaningweni ukuthi umuntu uwubani, kanti kulandelwa ukungachemi ngokuvuma ukuthi kukhona ukwenzelela okumele kuqashelwe ngoba ukungachemi kuphazanyiswa amaphutha okuba umuntu kanye nezinsiza ezisetshenziswayo. Imininingo yaqoqwa kubabambiqhaza abangama-250 kusetshenziswa ukuqoka ngokwenhloso yabakhokhintela abamnyama, kanti kwabangama-50 kwenziwa inhlayalwazi bukhoma. Imininingo yahlaziywa ngokusebenzisa insiza eyaziwa nge-IBM Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS) version 28 on Windows 10. Imininingo yethulwa ngokusebenzisa izithombezibalo, amathebula kanye namashadi. Imiphumela yalolu cwaningo yakhombisa ukuthi iBlack Tax iyabathinta bonke abamnyama abasebenzayo kungakhathaleki izinga lemfundo yabo noma izinga abakulo ngokwempilo. Abamnyama abasebenzayo abayifundele imisebenzi bahlobene kakhulu nabangaqashiwe kanye nabangafundile kanti lokhu kwenza kube umqansa ukugxila ekwakheleni izingane zabo ingcebo yezizukulwane ngezizukulwane. Abakhokhi bentela abamnyama bayakhuthazwa ukuba batshale ekuthuthukiseni ulwazi kwezezimali futhi babandakanye nezingane zabo kule nqubo.
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    (Re)creating ‘home’, (re)defining identity: transnational migration of South Africans of Indian descent to Australia.
    (2022) Govender, Subashini.; Pillay, Kathryn.
    Research on international migration of South Africans of Indian descent to Australia is limited. This study therefore set out to understand the experiences of transnationality, identity, and ‘home’ of this group of people. As people move from one country to the next, their identity and notion of ‘home’ are disrupted, it is thus these aspects which are examined in this thesis. Narrativity serves as both the theoretical framework as well as the methodological approach in this study as it provides a holistic account of migrant’s experiences, gives attention to the temporal and spatial dimensions of their story, and understands that participants are active agents who are given a ‘toolkit of options’ which they use to shape their own lives. In-depth interviews were conducted to solicit biographical information on participants’ journeys from South Africa to Australia, their settlement experiences and how they negotiate their identity and ‘home’, while simultaneously having strong transnational networks with South Africa. The key findings indicate that amongst South Africans of Indian descent, the main driver of migration is the wellbeing of children. Therefore, a trend of ‘family migration’ is created where the nuclear family immigrates to permanently settle in Australia. While participants are able to integrate into the social structures of Australia, it is difficult to form meaningful social connection with Australians, thus South Africans of Indian descent tend to form their own social networks amongst themselves which allows them to practice their culture and express their identity. Transnational networks of care are also important to enable South Africans of Indian descent to integrate into Australia. Thus, South Africans can adapt into the new society while concurrently having strong family ties to South Africa. Since the social interaction with Australians and other immigrants reveals that the identity of South Africans of Indian descent is racialised, they take an active stance to challenge the many taken for granted racist ideologies surrounding their identity. In Australia, South Africans of Indian descent experience varying degrees of overt, covert, institutional and cultural racism, which masks ‘white’ domination and ‘white’ supremacy that suppresses people of colour. The identity of South Africans of Indian descent is multiple and fluid. They come to identify themselves as South Africans, living in Australia, with an ancestral ‘home’ in India. These multiple identities show their attachment to multiple places and people. They attribute haven and hearth to their Australia ‘home’, while South Africa imbues the ideology of ‘heart as home’, suggesting that despite not living in the country any longer their belonging and identity is still linked to being South African.
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    Between hope and uncertainty: a no returning journey of African graduates from the United States of America to their home countries.
    (2022) Nkoko, Mosa.; Joseph, Rudigi Rukema.
    International Migration is steadily growing and has become a global phenomenon that is unavoidable. In Africa, there are thousands of people who move to Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) countries such as United States, United Kingdom, Canada, France, and Germany to name a few and they are made up of highly skilled migrants from their respective home countries. Migrants who are considered highly skilled not only consists of occupation professionals but also students who have completed their university education in their home countries and decided to further their studies abroad with the hope to come back and better their lives and that of their families. However, after the completion of their studies, most of them decide to stay behind in the host country. Therefore, the aim of this study was to investigate the reasons why Sub-Saharan Africans; South African, Kenyans and Nigerians in particular are reluctant to go back home upon completion of their studies and decided to stay in the U.S. The appropriate research paradigm that was used in this study is pragmatic because it accepts a mixed and multimethod research. Therefore, the investigation consisted of mixed methods; quantitative and qualitative research methods whereby data was collected by means of online surveys which had 224 respondents under quantitative data collection and 21 respondents under qualitative research methods who completed their university education in their home countries and decided to pursue their graduate degree in the U.S. The data was collected in two distinct phases; first the quantitative data, followed by the qualitative data collection which informed the quantitative results. The students were sampled using non-probability sampling namely snowball which included purposive sampling and the same individuals were included in both data collections. The eligibility criteria in this study were that the participants had to be citizens in their country of origin, have graduated from any accredited university in their home country, have graduated with a master’s or doctorate degree from any accredited University in the U.S. and have stayed a year or more in the U.S after completion of their studies. Additionally, the researcher identified four individuals who fit the criteria and were willing to participate. These individuals also knew other relevant willing participants who fit the criteria and helped the researcher to locate them. Those participants too referred the researcher to other individuals and so on and forth. Since the relevant participants were difficult to locate, purposive sampling helped the researcher to find the potential participants through internet recruitment. These participants were chosen according to the criteria that have been set. The theories used in this research study are World systems theory and Rational Choice theory as they are suitable to evaluate the reasons why African graduates do not return to their home countries after completing their studies abroad. Based on the analysis of both quantitative and qualitative data of this study, opportunities that include employment, better wages compared to their home country, higher standard of living compared to their home country, research training opportunities and scholarships have contributed to the African graduate’s decision to stay in the host country. Thus, Economic factors have strongly been identified as contributing to their decision to stay in the U.S after completing their studies. The findings revealed that they first decide to migrate to acquire a high level of qualification with the hope that it results in advancement of their careers and when offered opportunities where they are currently living and the opportunities are better than that which can be offered in their home countries, they decide to stay. This study also examined their experiences after deciding to remain in the U.S and despite acculturative stress such as perceived racism, loneliness, and stress; they have had positive experiences which entailed being offered employment and better salary. In addition, this study examined their attitudes and perceptions after deciding to remain in the Unites States, majority of them consider it as land of opportunities. It can be concluded in this research study that even though brain-drain analysts have not settled the debate of whether it is beneficial or detrimental to the sending countries as countries experience it differently, it is evident from the previous literature that the negative impacts of the brain drain outweighs the positive ones. The inequality of economic, political, and social levels between developing and developed countries determine the flow of migration. Without a doubt highly skilled individuals will always gravitate to countries that offer them opportunities to use their skills and can better their lives and that of their families resulting in sending countries losing professionals needed for development. Therefore, it is recommended that origin countries should look inward and address the brain-drain by implementing policies that will make improvements in their countries to attract them back or create channels that will assist in them contributing their knowledge and skills even when they are abroad. Finally, this study has contributed to the body of knowledge on international student-migration and a no return of African graduates specifically from South Africa, Kenya and Nigeria who decided to remain in the U.S upon completion of their studies. Additionally, it has contributed to the body brain-drain knowledge in academia and higher education, African graduates’ communities/countries, stakeholders and most importantly, policy makers as it has shed light on the nature and implications of the emigration of highly skilled/educated professionals. Key words: international students, migration, international migration, study abroad, brain drain, African graduates, human flight capital, globalization.
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    The proliferation of child marriages in Rushinga District, Mashonaland Central Province, Zimbabwe=Ukukhula ngobuningi kokushada kwezingane esifundeni saseRushinga, ezifundazweni ezimaphakathi eMashonaland, eZimbabwe.
    (2022) Mrewa, Jonathan.; Rama, Sharmla.
    The study aims to explore the proliferation of child marriage in Rushinga District which stands at 50 per cent in Zimbabwe. A clear understanding of the problem of marriage of children is essential to bridge the knowledge gap on the proliferation of the practice of marrying off children in Rushinga District. The study is unique as it explores the social and cultural context of communities in dealing with the problem of child marriage. The theory used to explore the perceptions and attitudes of the people in Rushinga District on the phenomenon of marrying off children is the Social Norms Theory by Parsons (1937) and Berkowitz (1986). The theory looks at the problem of child marriage through the lens of social and cultural context that frames the practice. This perspective points out that incidences of betrothal of girls in marriage are embedded in the social structures and attitudes that supports the practice within a social group. Customs and traditions surrounding marriage, including the desirable age for this, depends on views of community and society. In addition, social norms influence individual choices and they determine the criteria that an individual makes when deciding on the course of action to take. In making choices, individuals are sometimes influenced by community values in conforming to social expectations. The study adopts a qualitative case study approach, which is a scientific inquiry of a phenomenon within its real background. This is especially important to determine the impact of a phenomenon when its practice is not clearly defined. Social interpretive research entails that knowledge is tied in the social views of the people under study, and revelation of the meaning can be established through exploration and appreciative inquiry of the social world of the people. Purposively, 5 wards out of 29 wards in the District were sampled, where community members were asked to express their views about child marriage. All participants in this study were 18 years and older. In total, 25 participants participated in semi- structured interviews during the study. The research participants were chosen based on their knowledge and experiences of the phenomenon in the district. A number of themes emerged on the proliferation of child marriage during data collection and interpretation. The study revealed that betrothal of girl into marriage is embedded in the social interactions and how communities deal with issues such as poverty. For instance, marriage will entails bride price payment which becomes a livelihood option for a family in dire straits. Consequently, child brides are lives are entangled in abusive relationships imbedded in the norms surrounding masculinity in families. One of the panaceas identified in the study to the practice of child marriage, is community engagement and advocacy to deal with the social cultural impetus that triggers the practice of child marriage. Advocacy and dialoguing with opinion leaders is central to curb the practice of child marriage. Engagement will yield positive results as traditional leaders like chiefs can effectively monitor and implement the laws against child marriage, instead of sweeping them under the carpet. IQOQA Ukuqonda ukukhula ngobuningi kwemishado yezingane esiFundeni saseRushinga kubalulekile njengoba kuhleli kumaphesenti angama-50 eZimbabwe. Lolu cwaningo luphenya isimo sesikompilo emkhubeni wokushada kwezingane emiphakathini. INjulalwazi Yenjwayelo Yomphakathi kaParsons (1937) kanye noBerkowitz (1986) yiwo amehlo okubuka isimo sesikompilo kanye nokukhula ngobuningi kwemishado yezingane. Lokhu kuqonda kuveza ukuthi izigameko zokuzibophezela kanye nemishado yamantombazane kweyamene nezinhlalo zemiphakathi, imikhuba, kanye nezimomqondo. Injwayelo kanye namasiko amayelana nomshado, okubalwa kukho ubudala obudingekayo kulokhu, kuncike emibonweni yezakhamizi kanye nomphakathi. Injwayelo yomphakathi kanye namagugu emphakathini kunomthelela ekuzikhetheleni kwabantu ngabodwana kanye nezenzo zomphakathi. Ucwaningo lusebenzisa indlela yokucwaninga yekhwalithethivu. Lokhu kubalulekile ukubona umthelela wesimo lapho ukwenzeka kwaso kungacacile kahle. Ucwaningo lokuhumusha umphakathi lusho ukuthi ulwazi lusondelene nemibono yomphakathi wabantu abacwaningwayo, kanti ukwambuleka kwencazelo kungatholakala ngokuphenya kanye nokuphenya okuncomayo komhlaba womphakathi wabantu. Ngenhloso, izigceme ezi-5 ezigcemeni ezingama-29 esifundeni zasampulwa, lapho amalunga omphakathi aphonswa imibuzo ukuze abeke imibono yawo mayelana nokushada kwezingane. Bonke ababambiqhaza kulolu cwaningo babeneminyaka eyi-18 kanye nangaphezulu ubudala. Sebebonke, ababambiqhaza amangama-25 bahlanganyela ezingxoxweni ezisakuhleleka ngesikhathi socwaningo. Ababambiqhaza bocwaningo bakhethwa ngenxa yolwazi lwabo kanye nohambo lwabo kulokho okucwaningwayo esifundeni. Imiphumela iveza ukuthi ukukhula ngobuningi kanye nomshado wamantombazane kwencike ekuxhumaneni komphakathi kanye nokuthi izakhamizi zibhekana kanjani nezimo ezifana nobubha kanye nozinzo lwezomnotho. Njengokuthi nje, inkokhelo yelobolo, iba isu lempilo yomndeni nosewuphoqwe isimo. Nokuholela ekutheni, izimpilo zomakoti abayizingane zitholakala zihungeke ebudlelwaneni obunodlame futhi kwencike ekugqamiseni ubulisa kanye nobudoda. Ukuzibophezela komphakathi kanye nokulwela amalungelo kuba semqoka ekutheni ukuxoxisana nabaholi bomphakathi abafana nabaholi bendabuko njengamakhosi bangavumela ukulawuleka kanye nokusetshenziswa kwemithetho yemishado okubalwa kukho ubudala kanye nezimo zokubhekana nemvume yokushada.
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    Surviving marginalization in development-induced displacement in Zimbabwe: a case study of Tokwe Mukosi Dam Project.
    (2019) Nhodo, Lloyd.; Ojong, Vivian Besem.
    This thesis focuses on the state-people relations in the Tokwe-Mukosi dam project and the subsequent displacement in Masvingo, Zimbabwe. It dwells on the implications of the displacements on social networks and local institutions. It then proceeds to look at the adaptation mechanisms deployed by the flood victims in the new environs. Emphasis is made on the significance of livelihood assets, social capital, social networks and local institutions in dealing with marginalization. The study was grounded in qualitative methodology and participant observation, unstructured interviews, Focus Group Discussions and secondary sources of data were used as data gathering techniques. The study is actually based on the actual narratives of the Tokwe Mukosi people derived from twelve months of research at Chingwizi. Findings point to ambivalent relations between the Tokwe Mukosi people and the state. Of note is the fact that from the state’s perspective, the displacements are necessary in the interest of ‘the greater good’ and development. Conversely for the affected villagers, these displacements can never be justified since they had adverse effects on their livelihoods, social networks, local institution, as well as their social wellbeing. This has culminated in an unpalatable impasse between the residents and the state in this development-displacement paradox. Of note is the fact that despite enormous interest on the plight of the Tokwe Mukosi people nationally and internationally, research tended to evaluate them as passive victims of the state. The study nonetheless reveals that the Tokwe Mukosi people are far from becoming passive victims of their situation. The aptitude of the displaced people of Tokwe Mukosi to act based on agency is very clear in their ability to resist perpetual relocations at Chingwizi, as reflected in this study. In the same philosophy, the findings reveal their capacity to mobilize local resources to build resilience in the post displacement milieu. Central to their survival is a cocktail of livelihood assets, social capital and social networks. I highlighted that a significant number of the displaced people are falling back on local institutions. Emphasis was on how they are mobilizing and or creating new local institutions to build resilience. I also argued that their strategies for survival range between individual strategies and collective responses. These responses are enabling them to deal with the evacuated futures, and to continue aspiring for better life in the hostile and marginalized environment. I however argue that many of the livelihood options adopted by the residents in question border on immorality, illegality and criminality. Nevertheless, the displacee status becomes the sanctifier of those anti-social and immoral strategies. The thesis also revealed that the livelihood options for the Tokwe Mukosi people are binary in nature. This means that they are either survivalists, or they are more sustainable in orientation. Findings also revealed that the Tokwe Mukosi people have been surviving for more than half a decade with very little state protection, but there is always a danger of justifying the state’s inaptness under the guise of agency. The research highlighted that some residents are actually suffering from the unintended consequences of intended actions (survival strategies). In this study, I triangulated the Sustainable Livelihood Framework, the Actor Oriented Approach and the social capital theory to analyze the findings made herein. Complimentary concepts like legibility, strategic essentialism, capacity to aspire, times and the futures are also used to have a nuanced understanding of the Tokwe Mukosi people as rational calculative and strategic actors.
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    Coping with political corporatism: state-international non-governmental organisation relations in post-2000 Zimbabwe.
    (2021) Ntini, Edmore.; Sooryamoorthy, Radhamany.; Mtapuri, Oliver.
    This thesis focuses on the relations between International Non-governmental Organisations (INGOs) and the State in post-2000 Zimbabwe (2000–2009). This was an epoch depicting the democratisation process as posing a threat to the reign of Robert Gabriel Mugabe since 1980. My thesis is that in post-2000 Zimbabwe, INGOs and the State co-existed in a dichotomy where they needed each other. The aim of the study is to describe the nature of INGO-State relations in post-2000 Zimbabwe and construct an explanatory theoretical framework. The study is guided by the main research question: How have INGOs coped with political corporatism in the post-2000 Zimbabwe period? The study focuses on the nature of political repression directed at the INGOs by the post-2000 Zimbabwe and how the INGOs coped with the hostile political environment in fulfilling their mandate. The setting of the study is post-2000, a time when Zimbabwe was characterised by a severe economic meltdown, political contestation and political violence. The study employs two theoretical frameworks, namely Michael Foucault’s theory of governmentality and Pierre Bourdieu’s theory of the State. The study is philosophically grounded in the interpretivist paradigm and adopts a case study design and a qualitative research approach. Purposeful and snowballing sampling techniques were used complementarily to access willing participants. The sample consisted of 21 informants from INGO officials and State officials. From the INGOs, five participants were engaged in humanitarian organisations while five were engaged in developmental INGOs. Eleven participants were evenly spread among five government departments. The semi-structured interview was used as the major instrument of data collection augmented by document analysis of the Private Voluntary Organisations’ Act (2002) and the NGO Bill (2004) and other statutory instruments regulating the operations of INGOs in post-2000 Zimbabwe. The study finds that from 2000 onwards, the State in Zimbabwe used its governmentalities and capital to effect political corporatism or repression against INGOs. The co-existence of INGOs and the State was characterised by antagonism and mistrust although they concomitantly needed each other. Political corporatism became the instrument for controlling INGOs, political ideology and political dissent. Confronted with dilemmas, INGOs had to adopt coping strategies in post-2000 Zimbabwe. The study advances the theory of expedience in explaining the nature of INGO–State relations in post-2000 Zimbabwe as its major contribution to knowledge on INGO–State relations. The theory of expedience posits that both parties to a conflict need each other on one hand and are in bitter rivalry on the other hand. The pendulum of power swings between political power and the power of resources. The study recommends the removal of hindrances to enhance the smooth operations of INGOs such as limiting the powers of the executive directors and ministers as enshrined in the NGO Bill (2004) and PVO Act (2002), repealing repressive laws, and freeing the airwaves and the media as a way of fostering the democratic participation of organisations and citizens. Democratic participation helps to cultivate mutual trust and confidence. The respect for human rights and rule of law cannot be over-emphasised.
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    Exploring the experience of cyberstalking among female students in Tanzanian Universities: a case study of the University of Dar es Salaam.
    (2021) Kavishe, Angela Mathias.; Naidu, Uma Maheshvari.
    With the current advancement in digitisation, cyberstalking is increasingly being recognised to be a serious global social challenge, especially among university students. This kind of online harassment is characterised by persistent pursuit and monitoring of a victim performed by a determined perpetrator that induces fear or feeling of being unsafe on the harassed person. Cyberstalking has been researched in developed countries. However, in Africa, limited information is available on cyberstalking. This study aimed at exploring how digital technology creates new platforms of violence on the university campus and how university institutional facilities are prepared to curb cyberstalking. The study was guided by the Technological Social Change, Feminists Theory and Cyberfeminism theories. The study was undertaken online at the University of Dar es Salaam, involving 424 female students and 15 key informants. Data were collected using an online questionnaire, interviews, and FGD, as well as documentary review. The 424 female students filled the questionnaire; among them, 30 who had experienced cyberstalking were interviewed while 30 others participated in OFGD; the 15 key informants were also interviewed. The study used a sequential explanatory mixed method. The findings indicate that 172 (40.6%) among the 424 respondents experienced cyberstalking. The cyberstalkers were mainly men who claimed intimate and sexual relationships with the female students. By using video and audio calls; they intimidated, sexually harassed and defamed in social media. Others hijacked victims’ identities and monitored victims’ movements and activities. The study found that these harassments were founded on the longstanding societal mentality that women are subordinate to men. These attitudes transpired in silencing women’s voices, exploiting their bodies in the physical world, and now the ICT enable harassment in cyberspace. The victimised female students reported having felt their right to privacy, freedom of expression, movement, and life were violated. The study found that online methods were sometimes accompanied by physical harassment such as rape and fraud. While all these happen, the University was unaware of the harassment practices and the impact to the university community and status of the institution. Therefore, the study recommends the need to challenge the existing gendered power relations which legitimise online violence.
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    Adolescent sexual behaviour and its relationship to familial environment and perceptions: a study of Cape Town, South Africa.
    (2020) Chikovore, Emma Shuvai.; Sooryamoorthy, Radhamany.
    Worldwide, adolescents are exposed to an array of challenges that include unplanned pregnancies, sexually transmitted infections (STIs) and Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV). In South Africa, UNAIDS (2019) estimates that 69,000 female and 25,000 male adolescents acquired HIV in 2018. Little research has investigated the role of the family in influencing adolescent sexual behaviour. The significance of selecting South Africa, particularly Cape Town in the province of Western Cape to highlight the family environment and adolescent sexual behaviour nexus was done due to the historical background of high inflow of local and international migration to the city. By far, Western Cape’s HIV prevalence rate of 8.9% in a hyperendemic South African context, makes it one of the lowest in the country (Simbayi et al., 2019). Nevertheless, attractive economic prospects particularly in the city of Cape Town is likely to attract both international and local immigration which is likely to trigger an upward trend of HIV infections. Guided by the Life-Course Perspective Theory, this mixed method approach was carried out firstly, to understand the link between the family structure, the family’s financial circumstances, and parental engagement with their children and adolescent sexual behaviour; and secondly, to understand the perceptions of adolescents and parents on the role played by the family environment in shaping sexual behaviour among adolescents. The study drew data from the Cape Area Panel Study (CAPS); a longitudinal study conducted in Cape Town. The study tracked the lives of 4,752 adolescents aged between 14 and 22 and the study spanned between 2002 and 2009. In addition, 15 in-depth interviews (IDI) with adolescents and three (3) focus group discussions (FGD) with parents and adolescents were conducted. The participants in the IDI and FGD were recruited from the same sampling clusters as CAPS. The panel data were analysed using the logistic regression analysis reporting odds ratios (OR), and qualitative data using thematic analysis and the NVivo 11. Adolescents aged between 16 and 19 had higher odds of reporting having initiated sex and having experienced a pregnancy compared to adolescents aged between 14 and 15 years. Odds of reporting early sexual debut and adolescent pregnancy were lower among adolescents living in a family with a father, respectively. Adolescents from a family with a monthly income ≥ R25, 001 had less odds of having experienced a pregnancy, and higher odds of reporting condom use among adolescents from families with an income of R25, 001 and above compared to adolescents from a family with an income of R5,000 and less. These results were later supported by results from the qualitative data as both parents and adolescents blamed early sexual debut and pregnancy on the family environment. The study confirms the important role played by the family environment in determining adolescent sexual behaviour. It recommends the need to pay attention to families when designing sexual and reproductive health (SRH) programmes for adolescents.
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    Climate governance through indigenous knowledge systems for sustainable development in Mutoko District of Mashonaland East Province, Zimbabwe.
    (2020) Mugambiwa, Shingirai Stanley.; Joseph, Rudigi Rukema.
    Climate governance has over the years become a topical issue among scholars and policymakers. The concept has come into prominence as a result of the severe effects that climate change has on the livelihoods of communities around the world. In Zimbabwe, rural communities have been grappling with various climate-related challenges occurring in the country since the early 1990s. Nevertheless, the current climate change theories have not effectively established a comprehensive system of climate governance that is within the context of Indigenous Knowledge Systems. Therefore, the main aim of this sociological inquiry was to explore climate governance using Indigenous Knowledge Systems in pursuit of sustainable development in a Zimbabwean rural community. The study takes a swipe at adopting either a purely positivist or constructivist paradigm despite the fact that the constructivist paradigm is considered important for understanding Indigenous Knowledge and practices that are employed by local communities to adapt to climate change risks. As such, the study employs an approach that acknowledges the social interpretation and construction of IKS climate governance necessitated by grounded theory. The study adopted a qualitative method and data was collected through in-depth interviews and a focus group discussion. Grounded theory and Thematic Content Analysis were adopted as methods of data analysis. This qualitative enquiry linked climate change with rural livelihoods opportunities in an effort to determine how the impacts of climate change affect rural communities vis-à-vis sustainable development. The inquiry was executed through the theoretical specs of a triangulation of Grounded theory, Sustainable Livelihoods Approach and Afrocentricity. The study found that knowledge of climate change plays a pivotal role in paving way for IKS climate governance. The study also revealed that indigenous climate change adaptation dominates the communities’ adaptation options and it stands as a key informant for Scientific Methods employed and IKS climate governance. Lastly, the major contribution of the study was the development of an IKS climate governance conceptual model that was informed by the findings of the study.
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    Factors affecting maternal health seeking behaviour in a Yoruba community of Nigeria: an analysis of socio-cultural beliefs and practices.
    (2019) Dada, Ayoola Adekunle.; Khan, Sultan.; Nadvi, Syeda Lubna Bano.
    The significance of mothers to the overall sustenance of maternal health care cannot be overemphasized, despite this fact, however, there is an increasing gap between the developed and the developing countries in terms of morbidity and mortality and mothers‘ survival at prenatal, delivery and postnatal periods. In spite of the great efforts that have been put forth to achieve the 8th ―Millennium Development Goals‖, much work is yet to be done to assuring maternal health for women especially in Sub Saharan Africa The study involved a survey of 196 women aged 15-45+ years in Ido/Osi LGA in Ekiti of Nigeria which established maternal health seeking as inseparable from the socio-economic and cultural contexts in which they occur. Employing field methods from Medical Sociology and Demography, the study argues that maternal health seeking transcends the boundaries of either of these disciplines and that their comprehensive understanding entails the collaboration of both. Its specific objectives encompassed: (1) an investigation of the influence of cultural beliefs and practices on maternal health seeking (2) examination of the relationship between the social demographic characteristics of women and maternal health seeking and; (3) an assessment of the impact of the existing social structure on maternal health seeking. The model of behavioral change in public health, rational choice theory, location theory and feminist theory enable the study to highlight the links between socio-cultural variables and maternal health seeking by showing the strength of their separate and collective relationships. Data were collected by triangulation of in-depth interviews and the survey questionnaire. The qualitative data were analyzed through manual content analysis to identify the socio-cultural variables associated with factors affecting maternal health seeking; quantitative data were analyzed by using frequency distributions tables for univariate while cross tabulation was used with the aid of SPSS version 22 for bivariate analysis, Microsoft Excel 2013 for the charts and STATA version 12 for the T-Test. The result of the survey reveals that factors such as socio-economic, beliefs and cultural practices of the Yoruba people, to a large extent affect maternal health seeking. Some of the specific findings include: Patriarchy to great extent has a strong impact on maternal health seeking; majority of women in Yoruba community have strong beliefs in the efficacy of herbs in pregnancy management and child bearing; and that attitude of health workers also impair health seeking. The study therefore recommends that community mobilization should be geared towards ensuring that appropriate health-seeking behaviour becomes part of local social norms. Community education must address traditional beliefs about pregnancy related complications that are often blamed on women behaviour, fate, evil influences and other factors beyond the reach of the health care system. Due to the fact that Yoruba society is patriarchal in nature, men also should be educated on the intricacies that revolve around maternal health because, they dominate family decision-making. Also there is a need to strengthen policies and capacity building, training of health care providers, for improved quality of care and sustained research on reproductive health among the Yoruba people of Nigeria.
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    Migration: challenges and experiences of the Ethiopian diaspora in the city of Johannesburg (2000-2015) and the role of the Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo Church’s ministry.
    (2017) Tesfaye, Ayalkibet Berhanu.; Burton, Simon Ingram Robshaw.
    Migration is a fact of international life as people continuously move from one place to another, have different experiences, and must react to new society and their cultures. Following the 1994 dispensation, South Africa became one of the destinations of choice for many African nationals, including Ethiopians. The migration of Ethiopians is a part of the migration phenomenon which has embraced much of the world in the 21st century. This study examines the multiple challenges related to the social, economic, cultural, political and religious lives of the Ethiopian migrants and the experiences that they face in Johannesburg, their responses, and the role of the Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo Church (EOTC) in their survival strategy. Using a qualitative research method, it focuses on the analysis of the data collected from Ethiopian migrants in Johannesburg, indigenous South Africans who are members of the EOTC, and some Ethiopians in Ethiopia who reside in migrant-sending communities. The findings revealed that Ethiopian migrants have a set of social realities with their cultural and identity differences that foster their distinctiveness. This is coupled with problems that are associated with immigration documentation from the Department of Home Affairs in South Africa. They are also blamed for a range of socio-economic problems in South Africa and therefore, are scapegoated which results in some members of the host society engaging in xenophobic attacks. Furthermore, in the case of Ethiopians, their entrepreneurial talents and undertakings make them “soft targets” for robbery in Johannesburg. In coping with these problems, they seek solace in their Church and use a set of their cultural traits for their survival. In general, Ethiopian migrants face the range of problems in Johannesburg which have contributed to the existence of social distance between members of the host society and themselves. However, the study also found that there are common values that have the potential to contribute to social integration and social cohesion between both constituencies which would reduce the existing hostility. In addition, this study makes number contributions to the discipline. It also makes recommendations for the undertaking of further research that may be of assistance to policy makers, to the EOTC’s apostolic mission undertakings, as well as to the Ethiopian migrants themselves, and to the members of the host society.
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    The emergence of atheism in post-colonial South Africa.
    (2017) Pillay, Patrick Brian Segaren.; Settler, Federico Guliano.
    This study aims to offer an account of the emergence of the phenomenon of atheism in South Africa and in so doing present a case for its admittance as a new and exciting field of research within the academy in the country. The pervasive assumptions of religious normativity on the continent and in South Africa may serve to conceal a rich and vibrant worldview of atheism which, as this study proposes, can in its own right, also attempt meaningful responses to life’s deepest and most complex questions, without the need to declare an affiliation to any religious authority or sect. It is in the lived realities of atheists and in the makings of their social contexts, inclusive of its political history, its media and its laws, that this study finds its mooring and academic purpose. Given the embryonic nature of this project within a field of study which is under-researched in the country, the research design adopted includes a set of empirical components, by way of direct interviews with a set of self-pronounced South African atheists, an analysis of the phenomenon in relation to the country’s legal framework and jurisprudence, and a survey of the online digital media contexts in which atheism also finds representation. This multi-disciplinary approach sought to broadly trace through factors historic and current, as well as issues foreign and domestic, which have either advanced or suppressed the emergence of atheism in South Africa. Locating this study within the historical development of the worldview of atheism from as far back as Greek antiquity up to advances made in recent years in shaping this field of formal academic research, was considered imperative as a potential gateway for new rounds of future research on atheism itself, or other related sub-categories within the broader field of non-religion. Constructs which are distinctly different but which have grown in alliance with atheism in recent years, such as secularity and humanism have also become essential to the construction of atheist self-identities and the emergence of atheism as a social phenomenon in South Africa. The dialogue developed within this study between related literature resources and the responses of interviewees pointed to a new range of perspectives on atheism which were greater than the sum of these parts, in that South African atheists had demonstrably moved beyond the confines of having their lives defined by the absence of a religious belief system or by something that they are not.
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    Negotiating sexuality: informal sexual cultures amongst young people at a township high school in KwaZulu-Natal.
    (2017) Zibane, Sibonsile Zerurcia.; Bhana, Deevia.; Pattman, Robert.
    This thesis is an ethnography of teenage girls and boys in grade 11 who are located in a township school in the KwaZulu-Natal province of South Africa. Against the backdrop of major social and health problems in the country, including gender and sexual violence, high levels of teenage pregnancy and young women’s particular vulnerability to HIV, an understanding of the ways in which young people’s sexualities are constructed are crucial for addressing sexuality education programmes to intervene against risky sexual behaviour. The ethnographic study is framed within feminist post-structuralist theory and draw on the tenets of social constructuralist paradigm in exploring the participants’ realities. The study is based on two purposively selected grade 11 classes. The data was collected by means of participant observations, focus groups and conversations with teenage learners between the ages of 16 and 18 years old. The first class was a mixed sex group of 12 boys and 20 girls. The second class was a predominantly boys’ class of 22 boys and 3 girls. The study explores the meanings and significance which the teenage girls and boys attach to sexuality in their everyday lives; and the ways they define, position and group themselves as boys and girls in relation to dominant discourses of sexuality. This study argues that, for effective sexuality education programmes, we need to pay close attention to how young people’s knowledge about gender and sexuality is produced and reproduced. In a setting where young people are constructed as either sexually innocent or sexually deviant and where teen sexual agency is viewed as dangerous and an impediment to the academic purpose of schooling, grade 11 learners construct sex and sexuality as a positive development that enables active, self-aware, pleasure-seeking agents to negotiate their identities. Young people talked about high school years as ‘the’ time for sexual fun, sexual identity constructions, sexual exploration and sexual freedom. Notably, young people acknowledged that their sexuality constructions are negotiated in a context (a township) that still bear the brunt of a long history of violence, legacies of apartheid and inequalities, economic exclusion, oppression, the dominance of hegemonic masculinities and passive femininities. Throughout the thesis, attention is given to the ways in which boys and girls accommodate, resist and mediate dominant sexuality and expectations against surrounding social, political, cultural and economic context of the township. Implications are suggested in the conclusion of the thesis with respect to sexuality education.
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    The social construction of the South African seafarer’s identity and coping strategies, in the international merchant navy.
    (2017) Dekker, Lydia Carol.; Khan, Sultan.
    The aim of this thesis is to analyse the social construction of the South African seafarer’s identity and their coping strategies while working in international waters. There are two main objectives in this research. The first objective is to analyse how South African seafarers, who come from diverse cultural, language, gender, and racial backgrounds, construct their own identities, and their co-workers’ social identities, as well as how their co-workers construct South African identities in the maritime context. This objective is achieved by researching the South African seafarers’ social identity construction through the discourses of culture, language, gender, and race. Furthermore, the research acknowledges the role that the maritime industry, maritime culture, ship culture, safety culture, and training plays in the South African seafarers’ social identity construction. The first objective includes historical previews of the international and national maritime industry. By researching the relevant historic foundations of the maritime industry, the research lays the foundation for understanding how the maritime industry’s development influences the social identity constructions of seafarers. The second objective is to analyse how the coping mechanisms influence the social identity construction of the South African seafarer. This part of the research entailed researching and analysing how seafarers work and live for long periods in a unique industry: as this can render them vulnerable to physical and psychological problems. The theoretical framework of this thesis is social constructionism and organisational theories. In keeping with the theoretical framework, the research was qualitative in nature drawing on multifaceted qualitative methods: semi-structured and unstructured interviews, focus groups, and netography (social media). The findings reveal that the South African government’s efforts to relaunch the South African maritime industry have not been successful at the time of print. Furthermore, it is found that the South African seafarers have a need to protect their social identities against ignorant family members, the public, and the maritime companies on a continued basis. This is because they are not able to comprehend their seafaring experiences and challenges while working at sea. Some of the challenges include: working in a multicultural environment, communication problems, cultural, language, gender, and diversity, which not only lead to an arduous working environment, mentally and physically, but also to human error accidents. These challenges play a large part in the construction of the seafarers’ social identities.
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    Out of step but stepping up? : following a group of students negotiating university and beyond.
    (2015) Bydawell, Moya May.; Burton, Simon Ingram Robshaw.
    This study holistically explores the experiences at university and the effects of a university education for students at a South African university. Literature on students in higher education has generally been focused on ‘traditional’ students and graduates in the first world. This research advances understanding of students and graduates in a unique way. The study has used qualitative data generated from focus groups, extensive interviews, diaries and photographs of a small sample to uncover student narratives, which offer insights into the ways in which the participants negotiated their way through university, graduation and the early stages of their working lives. The participants showed evidence of remarkable resilience in navigating higher education and the job market without the requisite economic, cultural or social capital. Similar fortitude was also revealed in the attempts to fulfil the expectations of significant individuals and social groups. The findings from the research suggest that the impact of university education on social and economic mobility in the South African context is more complex than often assumed. The participants describe their unique positioning within inimical impulses of: progress and tradition, independence and belonging, conventional success and inner fulfilment. With regard to identity and emerging identities, the participants conveyed a need to create coherent links between their past, their present and their future selves. A sense of isolation emerged for the participants as a function of uneven and incomplete upward economic and social mobility, and the expectations of such mobility.
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    Employment and social inclusion: implications for young adults in Swaziland.
    (2016) Khumalo, Thandi F.; Burton, Simon Ingram Robshaw.
    The motivation for the research came from seeing young people struggle to get that first job breakthrough to the extent of compromising their qualifications for any available job, including landing in precarious jobs without suitable contracts, susceptible to manipulation. The motivation for my research was interaction with former students and relatives battling to transition from training to work careers whilst dealing with the rising expectations of society in their transition to adulthood. Methodologically, the study utilised a qualitative approach using in-depth interviews to collect primary data. Theoretically, the study was oriented around Bourdieu‘s theory of practice and Mills‘ sociological imagination. The study makes the basic assumption that employment is not only an individual personal experience requiring personal solutions, but it is also a public issue requiring public-political solutions. This research addresses two major issues. Firstly, to record the experiences of young people with employment and provide a voice for young people to share their stories of employment. Secondly, is to contribute to the literature, given the paucity of studies specifically addressing youth employment within the field dominated by unemployment literature. Research findings indicate that employment has positive outcomes and is also filled with challenges. Findings indicate a close relationship between education attainment and access to employment, education is still an important part of human capital. Employment is a life changing experience for young people, having a liberating effect that ensures independence from parents and partners, guaranteeing affordability of basic needs and luxuries, providing an opportunity to settle down and start a family, and enabling integration and participation in society. Challenges include; entering the job market and placed in jobs matching training, delayed entry into the job market encouraging volunteer work as a stepping stone to better jobs, and skills transfer problems whereby the future workforce‘ readiness is put to question. Interestingly, preference for employment supersedes entrepreneurial choices, yet the government and other key stakeholders view entrepreneurship as an alternative to a bulging labour market. The study recommends further research in the activity of young people. The scholarship failure to produce literature on young people‘s activity has caused paucity in this knowledge base.
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    An exploration of poverty and socio-cultural factors on young people's access to higher education in Kogi State, Nigeria.
    (2017) Durowaiye, Babatunde Emmanuel.; Khan, Sultan.
    This thesis is based on research, which explores young people‟s access to higher education as shaped, by poverty and socio-cultural factors in Kogi state, north Central Nigeria. It is occasioned by the absence of young people‟s voices from existing literatures which examined their access to higher education in Africa, particularly in the Nigerian context. By considering young people‟s access to higher education beyond their rational choices, this study takes Bourdieu‟s theoretical arguments and Lewis‟ culture of poverty in explaining the influences on young people‟s access to higher education as shaped within their socio-cultural milieu and other relational condition such as poverty. Through an analysis of quantitative and qualitative data involving 300 participants: 120 respondents in the survey; 60 participants for the focus groups, i.e., six focus groups (10 in each session); and 120 in-depth interviews comprising 60 young females and 60 males, aged 18 to 28, the study illuminates the different social factors and contexts that were of significant influence on the young people‟s access to higher education. Evidence from the findings in the study has suggested that young people are confronted with various contradictory norms and social constrains with respect to their gender, economic status and relational positions in gaining access to higher education. For instance, contrary to the social and religious norms within the local context of the young people that encourage them to attend formal education up to higher educational level, the existing gender norm limits female access to higher education. Apart from this, the young people were constrained in many ways that were often in conflict with other expectations widely held in their religious communities. The study concludes that socio-cultural factors played an essential role in young people‟s access to higher education while limited economic resources had a major impact on their educational pursuits. Accordingly, the study identifies a need for sensitization and a reconstruction of dominant gender norms affecting female‟s access to higher education. It also recommends more research on young people‟s access to higher education through the voices of young people themselves and studies that may go beyond the problem-centred approach in attending to the contexts of the exact implication on access for young people‟s higher education.
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    The wedding performance: gender inequality and system justification in the white wedding.
    (2016) Froschauer, Ursula Monica; Durrheim, Kevin Locksley.
    The white wedding has become a traditional ritual, which transmits with its preparations and celebrations stereotypical and patriarchal gender norms. Ten white, middle-class, heterosexual, newlywed couples formed the participants for the research study. The predominantly South African participants were interviewed about their weddings and the interviews transcribed verbatim. The resultant texts were analysed using Parker’s (2005) framework for discourse analytic reading. Throughout the analysis specific wedding discourses emerged, which served the purposes and intentions of the couples. Discourses, such as the fairy-tale discourse and the bride’s day discourse, allowed couples to justify certain gender inequalities and to experience the comforting effects of palliation. System Justification Theory (Jost & Banaji, 1994) functioned as a theoretical tool to understand and make sense of these justifications and accounts. The findings suggest that wedding discourses encourage the objectification of women and their treatment in a benevolently sexist manner, the unequal distribution of wedding labour between the bride and groom and ultimately the perpetuation of women’s subordination in heterosexual relationships. Participating in the rituals of the white wedding enhances women’s depressed sense of entitlement and out-group contact with men, which has a negative effect on gender equality and women’s emancipation.
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    Labour reforms and their impacts on employment security in Shell Petroleum Development Company in Nigeria.
    Kolawole, Ibukun Olorunisola.; Cebekhulu, Elias.
    The central aim of this study is to examine and investigate the impacts of labour market reforms and flexibility trends on employment security in Shell Petroleum Development Company in Nigeria. The implementation of these labour market reforms has led to the decline in permanent employment in the oil sector, where outsourcing, part-time jobs, temporary employment and other forms of atypical employment has taken over. The study also considers the international dimensions to labour flexibility as organisational methods of reducing labour cost. The rationale behind these reforms was to deregulate the sector and make it more flexible to the laws of supply and demand. The study asked some questions that are centrally concerned with labour market regulations and atypical employment. The research is informed by a number of problems that relate to the types of labour market reforms that were implemented by the management of Shell Petroleum Development Company in Nigeria: how have the labour market reforms affected job security and benefits of workers in Shell Petroleum Development Company; the implications of such reforms on an individual worker’s income in Shell Petroleum Development Company; the implications of such reforms on the livelihood of the workers; and how have these labour market reforms ignited worker-organised union and community resistance in Nigeria. In providing answers to these questions, the researcher was able to achieve the objective of the study, which is to investigate the impacts of labour reforms on the employment security of Shell workers in Nigeria. Firstly, the study examined different theoretical contributions to the study of labour market flexibility. Secondly, it engages literatures on the growing trend of labour market flexibility and the erosion of job and employment security, which subsequently led to labour market regulation. Thirdly, the work situation in Shell was considered using contemporary research and data, and it was discovered that there is a degradation of work and lack of quality working life, particularly among the segmented workers. Finally, I gave some recommendations that could bring about improvement in the employment conditions of segmented workers in Shell Petroleum Development Company in Nigeria.