Ryan Brunette received a Bachelor of Social Science, summa cum laude, with majors in Philosophy, Politics and Law, from the University of KwaZulu-Natal (UKZN). He received an Honours degree summa cum laude in Philosophy from the same institution.
Ryan also has an Honours in Politics with distinction from Wits University, and was awarded the Joe Ebrahim Prize for Best Honours Student in Politics. He was granted Golden Key membership at UKZN and Wits in 2008 and 2012 respectively. He recently completed his masters, under a PARI-Nedbank Scholarship, constituting a broad-ranging preliminary study of state capacity in South Africa and its history.
His research continues to focus upon the determinants of state capacity in South Africa, and upon the political ramifications of public administration.