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Africa is going through a youth bulge with more people under 25 than above 50 in all of its countries. Creating opportunities for the burgeoning number of youth is a…
Africa is going through a youth bulge with more people under 25 than above 50 in all of its countries. Creating opportunities for the burgeoning number of youth is a challenge that cannot be solved only at the country level. Regional integration policies that expand the opportunity space by increasing the size of economies and markets will be critical. Also needed are regional policies that can support the development and enhancement of innovation systems including investment in science and technology education to speed up the creation of a cadre of young people that can lead the transformation of stages of production from dependencies on primary products and extraction. Policies and Programs that can modernize agriculture and support effective creation of value chains that enhance the value added from agriculture that can excite youth back to the rural areas would also be needed. This paper explores the challenges facing countries in Africa in relation to it’s demographic transition, investigating the type of policies that would be most effective to address the challenge. The subsets of policies at the regional level are given special attention due to their opportunity expanding nature. Concrete examples of what has potential from observed results in other regions of the world are provided.
There is now real optimism of the prospects of Africa reclaiming the 21st century given its recent sterling growth performance and the number of successful reforms…
There is now real optimism of the prospects of Africa reclaiming the 21st century given its recent sterling growth performance and the number of successful reforms undertaken. There have been considerable and noticeable efforts to invest in innovation, infrastructure, integration, institutions and a revamp of incentive systems to develop new values that allow for transparency, accountability and greater social inclusion. New forms of leaderships have emerged at various social levels and institutions to drive a development agenda based on peer‐learning and knowledge‐sharing. Africa, in so doing, is unearthing deep skills and the reaping low‐hanging fruits needed to speed its ambitions to attain the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and sustainable development. This broad development agenda has required Africa to adopt strategic and practical solutions to the development challenges it faces. This volume interrogates a number of issues that are crucial for the attainment of sustainable development in Africa: a responsive governance framework, the demographic transition and youth bulge, conflict and related dynamics – such as disarmament and demobilisation, capacity building in post‐conflict and fragile states, the role of donors in enhancing (or otherwise) local development efforts, the need to understand the “softer‐side” of capacity development; and above all the role of savvy and strategic leadership. Understanding these issues and beyond, by organizations like the African Capacity Building Foundation (ACBF), will determine whether Africa will achieve its development ambitions in the very near future.
Today, more so than ever before, the African Continent is confronted with many challenges on its path to sustained growth and development. There is no denying the fact…
Today, more so than ever before, the African Continent is confronted with many challenges on its path to sustained growth and development. There is no denying the fact that Africa needs to substantially improve growth performance if it is to achieve the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). These various challenges facing Africa’s sustainable development were the main focus of the 20th Anniversary Summit of the African Capacity Building Foundation (ACBF) held in the picturesque city of Kigali, Rwanda ‐ under the theme ‘The Future of Africa is Now! The Critical Role of Capacity Development. The aim of this introductory paper of the special issue is to provide a summary of the key presentations from the Summit with special focus on leadership, innovation and the role of the private sector and science and technology, networks of skills and knowledge, rebuilding after conflict, and sustainable support to capacity development. Moreover the paper will also provide a summary of the steps outlined by the summit to build capacities for emerging challenges beyond the MDG. The paper will also include an overview of the ACBF’s flagship publication‐Africa Capacity Indicators Report (ACIR) launched during the Summit and finally conclude by highlighting a key outcome of the Summit ‐ ‘Kigali Resolution’.
Capacity building in fragile and post‐conflict situations is specially challenging for policy makers in that it represents a situation that needs to be carefully managed…
Capacity building in fragile and post‐conflict situations is specially challenging for policy makers in that it represents a situation that needs to be carefully managed. Understanding the dynamic link between capacity building and conflict requires understanding the nature and determinants of conflicts, their duration, intensity and the modalities for their cessation and post‐conflict reconstruction. This study attempted to do that from systemic or theoretical perspective. A major common theme that runs across the literature is that post‐conflict recovery and sustainable development and the associated capacity building exercise in Africa need to have the following four feature: (1) first a broad development planning framework with a fairly long‐time horizon and an overarching objective of poverty reduction; (2) second, social policy‐making in such countries is expected to be distinct from non‐conflict countries. This signals the need to articulate country specific policies and (3) third, intervention in such states requires a high volume of aid flows and (4) forth it need to be preceded by deeper understanding of African societies by donors. This study by outlining such basic issues from theoretical perspective resorted to an outline of three core areas of capacity building that are needed in post‐conflict and fragile states: capacity building to address immediate needs of post‐conflict states, capacity building to address the core economic and political causes of conflict, as well as, capacity building to address issues of finance and financial sector reconstruction. Each of these aspects is discussed in detail in the study. The study underscores the need to view and understand capacity building exercise as part and parcel of a broad developmental problem which requires broader developmental solutions.
Fragile states (FS) are often neglected and categorized as “aid orphans”. In extreme circumstances, they are loaded with aid beyond their absorptive capacity. However…
Fragile states (FS) are often neglected and categorized as “aid orphans”. In extreme circumstances, they are loaded with aid beyond their absorptive capacity. However, whether they receive little or too much, there is a compelling imperative to coordinate aid aimed at capacity development effectively. In an ever shrinking pot of funds from donors mainly due to the current global economic downturn, it is extremely important to coordinate and harmonise aid delivery. FS cannot afford to waste any money trapped under rubble of multi‐donor aid bureaucracy. Due to the multidimensional nature of fragility, we draw on case studies and interdisciplinary insights from Authority‐Legitimacy‐Capacity (ALC), Country Development Framework (CDF) and other models and frameworks of donor coordination. A number of asymmetries (e.g. technical, cultural and, financial) between donors and recipients need to be addressed. Donors can harmonise their respective Africa strategies reports and give priority to infrastructure instead of focusing exclusively on the social agenda as in the past. FS should fight the local culture of corruption, avoid fungibility, protect vulnerable groups in society, focus on reintegration as well as demobilizing ex‐combatants with employment provisions. Donors should not give mixed signals to recipients and need to be flexible in their operational procedures. Finally, we discuss the implications of key emerging issues that threaten or facilitate sustainable reconstruction, development and poverty reduction in post‐conflict environments.