Brief Bio: J. G. (Kobus) Maree
i. Employment profile
A professor in the Department of Educational Psychology at the University of Pretoria (UP) for more than 20 years, I lecture counselling for career construction to educational and counselling master’s psychology students. Since 2014, I have successfully supervised eight doctoral theses and seven master’s dissertations.
ii. Research interests
A unifying theme runs through all my research endeavours – the theme of drawing on and constantly updating integrative QUALITATIVE-quantitative career construction counselling for all people (in individual and especially group contexts) to rekindle their sense of meaning, hope, and purpose. I believe that research and praxis in career counselling should be positive and creative. It should help free people (the marginalised and disadvantaged in particular) from the restraints of the former positivist approach (when used alone) and meet their career counselling needs in the postmodern era. My research is aligned with the “Leave No One Behind” pledge of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and its Sustainable Development Goals and guided by SDG 8; “Promote sustained, inclusive and sustainable economic growth, full and productive employment and decent work for all”. Since 2002, my main interests have been career construction counselling and (since 2010) life designing. I have conducted research with colleagues nationally and internationally that has informed career counselling practice, theory, and policy at various levels, including contextualising and indigenising career counselling interventions.
I constantly seek creative, science-based solutions for present-day ‘challenges’ in career counselling to ensure that the counselling meets the diverse needs of workers and work-seekers and helps them deal with changes in the world of work. It is essential to find ways to meet the career counselling needs of groups of people, especially, which opens a relatively new field of intervention. I apply integrative group career construction counselling to bolster people’s internal and external dialogue.
iii. Membership of scholarly societies
I am/have been a member of several national and international career counselling bodies, including the National Career Development Association (USA), the American Psychological Association (APA), the Society for Vocational Psychology (SVP) (USA), the International Association of Applied Psychology (IAAP) (USA) (also a member of Division 16 Executive Board and IAAP Board of Directors), the Psychology Association of South Africa (PsySSA) (long-standing council member), and the Association of Science of South Africa (ASSAf).
iv. Some awards received
I was awarded the Stals Prize of the SA Academy of Science and Arts for Exceptional Research in Psychology (2014), a fellowship of the IAAP (2014), the PsySSA Award for Excellence in Psychological Science (2015), honorary membership of the Golden Key International Honour Society (2015), and fellowship of the PsySSA (2017). In 2018, I was elected a member-at-large of the IAAP. I was awarded the UP Chancellor’s Medal for my research from the University of Pretoria in 2014 and have been nominated as an Exceptional Academic Achiever on several occasions.
v. Publications and conferences attended
Google Scholar reports that my work has received more than 8 000 citations since 2016. I have authored or co-authored 30+ peerreviewed articles and 20+ books/book chapters (published by major publishing houses) and provided encyclopaedia entries on career counselling research since 2014.
vi. Editorial activities
I have been the editor of several WoS-indexed scholarly journals, including the South African J of Psychology and Perspectives in Education. I am the founding editor of the African J of Career Development. During the past eight years, I have served (and, in most instances, still serve) on the editorial boards of numerous leading national and, especially, international scholarly journals in my field.
vii. Leadership positions, visiting professorships, and evidence of global acknowledgement
I am the sole African representative on the following core scientific (UNESCO) committees: a) the UNESCO Chair on Lifelong Guidance and Counseling and b) the UNESCO University Network and Twinning (UNITWIN) Chair. I was elected a member of the Board of Directors of the IAAP (Division 16) in 2018 and serve as Registrar of the SA Career Development Association (SACDA). I accepted honorary scholarly appointments as a research fellow at the University of the Free State (2019-2020 and 2021-2022), professor extraordinaire at the University of Stellenbosch (2017-2020), and adjunct professor at the University of Southern Queensland (2014-2017). During 2014-2021, I was a visiting professor in several countries (e.g., Hungary, Italy, Australia, and the Czech Republic) worldwide. Examples of premium international conferences where I read keynotes include the 43rd International Association for Vocational Guidance Congress (Bratislava, Slovakia, 2019); the 29th International Congress of Applied Psychology (ICAP) (Montreal, Canada, 2018); the World Council for Gifted and Talented Children Congress (Kentucky, USA, 2021), and the 32nd International Congress of Psychology (Prague, the Czech Republic, 2021).