Janet Cherry is a South African human rights activist, trainer and academic. She is currently a professor at the Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University in Port Elizabeth, in the Department of Development Studies. She is also a trainer for the Center for Applied Nonviolent Action and Strategies (CANVAS) based in Belgrade, Serbia. She has been involved in research for, among others, the Human Sciences Research Council (Democracy and Governance Programme), the South African Truth and Reconciliation Commission, and the International Centre on Human Rights Policy (Geneva).
She has a Ph.D. in Political Sociology from Rhodes University. Her main areas of research are human rights, democratic participation, social history, gender and development. She has a history of human rights and development activism, including involvement with the Anti‐War Coalition, the End Conscription Campaign, Amnesty International, the Black Sash, IDASA, NUSAS, the UDF and the ANC.