Amanda Gouws is Professor of Political Science and holds a PhD from the University of Illinois in Urbana-Champaign in the USA. Her fields of specialisation are South African Politics and Gender Politics and Political Behavior. Her co-authored book with James Gibson from Washington University St Louis, Overcoming Intolerance in South Africa: Experiments in Democratic Persuasion (Cambridge University Press, 2003) was awarded the Alexander George Book Award for best book in Political Psychology in 2003. In 2004 she received the Rector's Award for Excellence in Research. She has published widely on issues in South African Politics and Gender Politics. In 2012 she received the award for Distinguished Women in Science from the Department of Science and Technology. In 2012 she received the Wilma Rule Award for the best paper in the category "Women and Politics" from the International Political Science Association (IPSA) at their conference in Madrid, Spain, with a paper titled " Multiculturalism in South Africa:Dislodging the Binary Between Universal Human Rights and Culture/Tradition". Her edited manuscript with Daiva Stasiulis, titled "Gender and Multiculturalism: North/South Perspectives" appeared with Routledge in 2014.
She is a member of the Association of the Academy of Science of South Africa (ASSAF). She was a Commissioner with the South African Commission for Gender Equality until June 2014.
Presently her research focuses on women and citizenship, the National Gender Machinery, representation and multiculturalism in the South African context. She is the editor of (Un)Thinking Citizenship: Feminist Debates in Contemporary South Africa. (UK: Ashgate and Cape Town: Juta, 2005). This book was selected as "Book of the Month" in February 2007 by Constitution Hill, the seat of the Constitutional Court. In 2007 she was the Edith Keeger Wolf Distinguished Visiting Professor at Northwestern University, USA. In April 2011 she was a resident at the Rockefeller Foundation Centre in Bellagio, Italy. In 2015 she was awarded a South African Research Chairs Initiative Chair in Gender Politics.