Nic Spaull's headshot

Nic Spaull

Nic Spaull is a RISE Fellow and Associate Professor of Economics in the Economics Department at Stellenbosch University. His research centres on education policy in South Africa with a focus on inequality and early grade literacy and numeracy. In 2020, Nic initiated the National Income Dynamics Study Coronavirus Rapid Mobile Survey (NIDS-CRAM), a nationwide consortium of more than 30 researchers from six universities, to measure the impact of COVID-19 in South Africa. This has generated over 50 research papers in less than a year and has been cited by the President of South Africa. Nic also founded "Funda Wande: Reading for Meaning" an influential non-profit organisation focusing on early grade reading and mathematics. Nic comments regularly in the media and advises numerous policymakers in government and decision-makers within philanthropies, trusts, and NGOs in South Africa. He is currently conducting two Randomised Control Trials in South Africa (2019-2022) evaluating alternative teacher training/coaching modalities and early learning materials. His most recent book is “South African Schooling: The Enigma of Inequality” which is co-edited with Jonathan Jansen and published by Springer (2019). He blogs at