Ryan Brunette

Research Associate

Ryan Brunette

Ryan does research on the formation, preferably over long periods of time, of public administrations. He is particularly interested in understanding the ways in which such institutions are embedded in, and entwined with, broader social contexts. His work presently extends to compliance regimes, civil service and public financial systems, and public procurement. He has been involved in various reform and support initiatives in these areas. His focus is on South Africa, but he understands the country in global and comparative terms.
Ryan is currently studying for a PhD in Political Science at the Graduate Center of the City University of New York. He completed his Masters at PARI and Wits University. He has Honours in Philosophy and Political Science at the University of KwaZulu-Natal and Wits University. He did his Bachelors with majors in Philosophy, Politics, and Law at the University of KwaZulu-Natal.


Brunette, R., J. Klaaren and P. Nqaba (2019) ‘Reform in the Contract State: Embedded directions in public procurement regulation in South Africa’. Development Southern Africa, 36(4): 537–54.

Olver, C., M. Buthelezi and R. Brunette (2017) ‘Party Political Funding and the South African State’. Submission to the Parliamentary Ad-hoc Committee on the Funding of Political Parties. Working Paper. Johannesburg: Public Affairs Research Institute.

Meny-Gibert, S. and R. Brunette (2015) ‘Reflections On A GTAC Project To Improve Supply Chain Management In A Provincial Education Department’. A PARI report for the Government Technical Advisory Centre (GTAC).

Brunette, R. (2015) ‘South Africa’s Agrofuels Industry: A Non-Starter?’ An African Centre for Biosafety report.

Brunette, R., I. Chipkin, G. Tshimomola and S. Meny-Gibert (2014) The Contract State: Outsourcing And Decentralisation In Contemporary South Africa’. A PARI report. Johannesburg: Public Affairs Research Institute.


Op Eds

The Politics of South Africa’s Patronage System: The process of anti-patronage reform (Daily Maverick)

The Politics of South Africa’s Patronage System: Part One (Daily Maverick)

How will South Africa tackle corruption? (Mail and Guardian)

Our movement against corruption will fail without public sector reform (Daily Maverick)

Decentralised procurement fails the state (Mail and Guardian)

Politics of patronage is dealt a blow by Gordhan (Business Day)

Elite Struggle Over Zuma is Making Weapons Against the Poor (Daily Maverick)

How Not to Talk About Corruption in SA (Africa Is A Country)

The Lame Duck President (Africa Is A Country)