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Gideon Strauss

Associate Professor in Worldview Studies at Institute for Christian Studies

Contact me regarding: Research Collaboration

About Me

I am passionately committed to the pursuit of a flourishing future for Africa.

I am, at heart, a phenomenologist. I do what I do, firstly, for the sheer delight of exploring the meaning of lived human experience, and secondly, to assist others as they seek to make sense of and find their way through the complexities of modern life.

I am a leadership educator, staging learning experiences in which the learning experience aligns with the learning content. I help equip people for the practice of adaptive leadership oriented towards major global problems - in particular the challenges surrounding poverty and injustice faced by societies in sub-Saharan Africa.

I do research by means of interviews and direct observation, primarily making use of phenomenologically-informed methods. Drawing on my research, I communicate what I discover in writing, public speaking, and personal conversations, and craft learning experiences (such as workshops and in-person and online college and graduate school courses) to equip people with frameworks and tools for adaptive leadership, strategic and vocational wayfinding, and organizational and institutional sensemaking.

My work gives me the opportunity to meet many fascinating people, and I love connecting people who share passions or who have skills and resources that can be mutually beneficial to one another.

I have provided executive leadership in three organizations, edited three magazines, taught at the undergraduate and graduate levels in higher education, presented at numerous conferences, done and managed research, and written both popularly and academically.

Specialties: teaching, research, writing, public speaking, networking, fundraising, executive leadership.

(Updated April 24, 2015)

My disciplines and areas of professional expertise include…

Current work

Among other things I study (1) practice and performance in leadership and art-making, (2) vocational wayfinding, (3) African political economy in global context, (4) the aesthetics of everyday life, and (5) phenomenologically-informed research practices.

Contact me regarding...


  • University of the Free State/Universiteit van die Vrystaat

    • 1995 PhD, Philosophy and ethics


  • Institute for Christian Studies

    • 9/2015 - Present Associate Professor in Worldview Studies
  • Center for Public Justice

    • 7/2011 - Present Senior Fellow
  • Max De Pree Center for Leadership

    • 1/2012 - 9/2014 Executive Director and Editor of Fieldnotes Magazine
  • Cardus

    • 4/2000 - 9/2014 Senior Fellow
  • Center for Public Justice

    • 10/2009 - 6/2011 CEO


  • English

  • Afrikaans

  • Dutch