- The Pulse Phenomenon in South Africa:    click here to open paper content130 kb
by    Buthelezi, Sibusiso | praplan@mweb.co.za   click here to send an email to the auther(s) of this paper
Short Outline
How is South Africa dealing with pulse events, the lessons that could be learned in the way the country is managing these pulse events and their aftermath
Since the introduction of a non-racial democratic government in South Africa on 27 April 1994 and the peaceful way it happened, the country, through its major cities, have managed to attract and host a significant number of mega international events. These events range from political and sporting to economic events, which and often exhibit pulse-like characteristics. Currently, South Africa is preparing to host the United Nations Summit on Sustainable Development and Cricket World Cup. As pulse events they are often associated with huge financial expenditure in infrastructure, and human resources. How can public expenditure on opportunities like these be balanced against the enormous socio-economic needs of the country’s people?

The short term and long-term political and socio-economic benefits and development spin-offs, that accompany, or are expected from hosting these international events, are often seen as worth the costs incurred. In addition, the success achieved by South African cities in attracting events of international significance is regarded as a good measure of the country’s ability to compete with the cities in the industrialised world. However, in spite of benefits associated with these events, there are concerns about the negative impact on the many pressing, priority planning and development needs of the country. These concerns are justifiable given that the high profile nature of these hallmark, international events compels the country and planning authorities to re-focus activities and divert scarce resources to hosting them. Because, these events are often not part of the integrated development plans and programs, which South African major cities prepare every five years, hosting them often means diverting attention and resources from planned development programs.

This paper aims to make a practical contribution to the objectives of the Congress by describing the experience with pulse events in South African major cities, how the country is dealing with pulse events, the impact and lessons that could be learned in the way the country is managing these pulse events and their aftermath. To this effect, the paper will present practical examples from major cities such as Johannesburg and Durban. The paper will also explain issues facing the South Africa and its major cities, which together create a context where pulse events have both potential benefits and costs. As a result, managing their impact is critical and should receive specific attention.
click here to open paper content  Click to open the full paper as pdf document
click here to send an email to the auther(s) of this paper  Click to send an email to the author(s) of this paper