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Through our activities as an effective and sustainable institution, the Sol Plaatje Media Leadership Institute plays a key role in the success and quality of African media which meets and contributes to global journalism standard and information flow.

African print, broadcast and on-line media are better led and take effective advantage of new markets, technologies and systems.

The quality, impact and integration of the media in Africa is improved and is contributing to the democratic and socio-economic development of the continent.


The SPI will:

  • Make a significant contribution to the sustainability of media in Africa by promoting effective and innovative management and leadership practices.
  • Enable editors and media owners and managers to respond to the demands of the competitive and fluid political, economic and technological global environment.
  • Provide postgraduate courses and in-service training opportunities in all areas of media management, which prepare students and professionals to excel in leading media enterprises. Conduct ongoing research into media management practice and needs which informs SPI activities and provides professional guidance to leaders in the media industry.
  • Provide specific consultancy services to enhance the leadership and management of media organisations.Develop synergies within the School of Journalism at Rhodes University and other resource partners.Maintain, develop and provide efficient administration services.Enhance the quality of SPI's activities through ongoing critical reflection and evaluation; and
  • Promote the profession of media management and develop the SPI's profile, services and capacities to ensure a long-term contribution.

About Solomon Plaatje

The Institute is named after Solomon T Plaatje (1876 - 1932), one of the most remarkable South Africans of his generation. Plaatje was an outstanding political leader, prolific writer, newspaper proprietor and journalist. He was one of the founders of the African National Congress and became the party's first general secretary. His political book "Native life in South Africa" is an indictment of pre-grand apartheid discriminatory legislation while his historical novel "Mhudi" was the first novel in English to have been written by a black South African. Sol Plaatje was publisher editor of Koranta ea Becoana (Becuana Gazette) in Mafikeng and later Tsala ea Becoana (Becuana Friend) and Tsala ea Batho (The Friend of the People). These newspapers were published in Setswana and English.