International Dialogue

Integral to the work of the Foundation are Public Lectures, Seminars and Publications. This series of activities contributes substantively to the goals of SBF by:

  • Promoting leadership
  • Stimulating critical debate
  • Creating platforms for intergenerational dialogue
  • Bridging the gap between academia and civil society
  • Linking local issues with the Diaspora and the international community at large
  • Generating content for publications and informing research


Titled after the pseudonym under which Steve Biko wrote, this newly created forum is designed to bring together young professionals from various sectors for discussion around salient issues impacting South Africa’s political, economic and social development. There are a lot of topics explored on FrankTalk.

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The Steve Biko Memorial Lecture

Established in 2000, the Steve Biko Memorial Lecture is the flagship program of the Steve Biko Foundation and a principal avenue through which the Foundation pursues a core element of its mission to foster the intangible but essential community building blocks: history, identity, culture and values, as the foundation for leadership and agency at the level of the individual and the community. Described as a resuscitative moment, the Steve Biko Memorial Lecture is an opportunity to explore the inextricable link between the individual and society; to explore our triumphs over inequality; and to speak to contemporary challenges and opportunities facing people of African descent.

  • Professor Njabulo Ndebele (2000)
  • Professor Zakes Mda (2001)
  • Professor Chinua Achebe (2002)
  • Professor Ngugi wa Thiong’o (2003)
  • President Nelson Mandela (2004)
  • Dr. Mamphela Ramphele (2005)
  • Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu (2006)
  • President Thabo Mbeki (2007)
  • Minister Trevor Manuel (2008)
  • Governor Tito Mboweni (2009)
  • Professor Alice Walker (2010
  • Sir Sydney Kentridge (2011)
  • Professor Ben Okri (2012)
  • Dr. Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma (2013)
  • Judge Navi Pillay (2014)
  • President Joaquim Chissano (2015)

The Robert Sobukwe Memorial Lecture


Established to honour the legacy of the late Pan Africanist, the Robert Sobukwe Memorial Lecture focuses on issues which are particularly relevant to the African continent. Lectures have been delivered by:

  • Professor Es’kia Mphahlele (2003)
  • Archbishop Emeritus Njongonkulu Ndungane (2004)
  • Judge Dumisa Ntsebeza (2005)
  • President Pierre Buyoya (2008)
  • H.E. Mr. Adama Samassekou (2010)
  • Professor Kwandiwe Kondlo (2011)
  • Professor Pumla Gqola (2014)

In addition to its annual lectures and conferences, the Foundation facilitates a number of other platforms for dialogue and leadership development in the form of seminars and workshops, which are anchored by a range of practitioners.

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