Power and Politics in Africa - a new research programme with links to DIIS
Ole Therkildsen is member of the programme's Consortium Advisory Group
Power and Politics in Africa is a new Research Consortium of seven partner universities and research institutions in Africa, France, UK and the US. ODI, London, is the lead agency. The consortium plans to do research in up to 18 African countries funded by a five-year grant from DFID.
The overall objective is “to identify better ways of exercising power, doing politics and building states that might work better for development and poverty reduction in sub-Saharan Africa than the arrangements now in place.”
Why is this important? Because “we know much less than we should about the forms that more governmental governance might assume, and how they might emerge. This is partly because we rely on standards of good governance that are insensitive to context and history. It is also because research, too, has been focused on generic issues. Researchers have not explored systematically why apparently similar patronage-oriented arrangements have yielded different outcomes in different places and times. Consequently, we don’t know which forms of governance, at the local and national levels, might be ‘good enough’ in the sense that they allow key developmental problems to be solved and progress to be made.”
The Consortium Advisory Group, to which Ole Therkildsen has been appointed, has six members of which three are from outside the UK. This Group is advisory and has a clearly defined quality control function.
The DIIS-based research programme on “Elites and the New Poverty Agenda” focuses on some of the same issues as this new research consortium does. Ole Therkildsen’s membership in the Advisory Group will therefore help to strengthen links between the two research programmes.
Power and Politics in Africa: web site under construction
Link to the programme "Elites and the New Poverty Agenda"