Latest Articles

Argentina’s Shifting Politics: New Prospects for Collaboration with Africa?

Published: 2016
Mauricio Macri, Argentina’s new president, has many challenges ahead. In the initial 10 months of his government, he has devalued the currency, lifted significant trade and capital barriers, and launched conversations with international investors and creditors, and has changed international perceptions toward Argentina. A positive reaction was immediately generated by Macri’s election from the...

One Size Does Not Fit All: A Field Experiment on the Drivers of Tax Compliance and Delivery Methods in Rwanda

The literature in this report focused exclusively on high and middle-income countries. This paper begins to fill this gap by reporting on the results of a tax field experiment in Rwanda, while also focusing on some characteristics that may be common to other low-income countries. It evaluates an intervention carried out by the Rwanda Revenue Authority (RRA), which involved sending messages to...

Journal of Energy in Southern Africa Vol 27 No.2

Published: 2016
This journal features several articles on renewable energy. On page 1 -A literature review on the potential of renewable electricity sources for mining operations in South Africa – analyzes the potential of renewable electricity sources for mining operations in South Africa. On page 22 - Incorporating a three dimensional photovoltaic structure for optimum solar power generation – the effect of...

Journal of African Elections Special Issue South Africa’s 2014 Elections

Susan Booysen looks at the ANC’s impact and the various challenges it confronted and focuses on how the spread of the organisation’s electoral support is changing as a result. Sithembele Mbethe ascribes the ANC’s continued decline against the formation of the Economic Freedom Fighters. She argues that the EFF’s relatively impressive performance shows the resonance of populism and that the party...

Understanding the Role of Women in Household Upkeep in Nigeria

The first project to be discussed in this newsletter covers the role of women in households. The contributions of housewives to the household development, originates largely from the non- domestic to domestic sphere – despite the fact that they are grossly unrecognized and appreciated. These contributions should be recognized and appreciated in Delta State and indeed in Nigeria so that they could...

The New EU Global Strategy and What It Means for Morocco

Published: 2016
The EU Global Strategy, is reviewed in this policy brief which highlights its main strengths and weaknesses as well as innovations, starting with the concept of resilience. It argues that the document has many strengths for being a compromise text written at a time of deep uncertainty about the EU's own future. The brief also comments on the future of EU-Morocco relations in the new...

Enhancing Multidimensional Peace Support Operations (PSOs) Capacities in Africa: Any Role for China?

This study joins the debate around two major developments, within the broad rubric of a burgeoning China Africa cooperation in peace and security, and interrogates China’s contribution in enhancing Africa’s multidimensional PSO capabilities as part of its broader efforts of operationalizing the ASF. Most of the current African PSOs are still considered to be heavy on the military side and lacking...

Al Qaeda vs. Daech in the Sahel : What to Expect?

The terrorist landscape in the Sahel is characterized by multiple players that destabilize the countries in the region. Despite the fact that each terrorist group has particular areas of action and zones of influence, nevertheless two main ideological tendencies confront each other in the Sahel. On the one hand, there is Al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb, and on the other, the Islamic State (IS)...

From Rhetoric to Action Delivering for Young Women in Africa

Young African women between the ages of 15 and 35 find themselves in a conundrum, in a world that is highly patriarchal and ageist - frequently facing a double burden brought about by their gender and age, and falling through the cracks of government programmes. While the need to empower young women is often couched in an argument of numbers, this policy brief argues that through enhanced action...

The Impact of Climate Change on Water Resources, Agriculture and Food Security in the Ethiopian Rift Valley: Risk Assessment and Adaptation Strategies for Sustainable Ecosystem Services

The findings from an agricultural survey is addressed in this study. This report focuses mainly on explaining the farmer’s sensitivity to the changing climate and the way they perceive the notable changes in rainfall and temperature conditions and its impacts on crop production. The role of the current adaptation mechanisms and constraints were evaluated across different agro-climatic zones in...

The Mist of Central Bank Balance Sheets

The central banks of large and emerging market economies have recently gone through a period of extraordinary expansion of balance sheets. Currently, they are all now possibly facing a transition to less abnormal times. The fact that one group, however is comprised by global reserve issuers and the other by bystanders receiving impacts of the former’s policies carries substantively different...

Money Talks - A Key Reason Youths Join Boko Haram

The particular observation in this study, that people join Boko Haram because of financial rewards, challenges the popular scholarly proposition that poverty has no direct causal link with terrorism and violent extremism. Although, it is not the only cause, poverty or financial reward, does, however play an important role in people’s decision to join Boko Haram. The despicable poverty in...

A Review of the Kenyan Policy Environment for Off-grid Solar PV

Energy has been identified as one of the foundations and enablers of the socio-economic transformation visualized by Kenya in its Vision 2030 development blueprint. However many Kenyans still do not have access to affordable energy which limits socio-economic opportunities for development. This paper explores the policy environment of solar home systems in Kenya with a view of understanding the...

Boko Haram and Violent Extremism - Perspectives from Peacebuilders

Since 2009, Boko Haram have unleashed atrocities which have affected millions of people in Nigeria and the region as a whole. The results of a field-based study on peace builders’ perspectives of the drivers of violent extremism; and the underlying socio-economic and political factors that influence individuals to join Boko Haram is presented in this policy brief. The study reveals that peace...

Mozambique’s Debt Crisis: Trawling for Answers

Published: 2017
Debt relief was granted to the government of Mozambique, less than two decades ago, and again this government finds itself unable to honour obligations to international creditors. Pending the publication of an audit of US$2 billion of borrowing by Mozambican companies afforded questionable sovereign guarantees, Africa Research Institute and Zitamar News convened a webinar with four expert...

Les Atouts du Maroc dans le Domaine de l'énergie Verte/ Morocco’s Green Energy Opportunity

Published: 2016
The energy landscape in Morocco has been changing rapidly over the past decades. Factors like population growth, industrialization and rising living standards which have been accompanied by rising access rates to electricity as well as high rates of rural-urban migration have all contributed to Morocco’s growing energy needs. Morocco has historically traded agricultural products but imported...

Adapting the Innovation Histories Method for A Workshop on Solar Home Systems Uptake in Kenya

"This briefing reflects on the adaptation of the Innovation Histories method for our research project on the uptake of solar home systems (SHSs) in Kenya. It provides an overview of the method itself, how we adapted it to fit with the aims and theoretical perspectives of our research, and it reflects on our practical experiences of this process, including how we might do it differently in...

Innovation Histories Workshop on the Solar Home System Market in Kenya

"This report presents proceedings of an innovation histories workshop on the Solar Home System (SHS) Market in Kenya. The workshop was held on 3 June 2013 at Silver Springs Hotel in Nairobi Kenya. Stakeholders in the SHS market convened to reflect, draw on, capture and share thoughts and experiences to develop a comprehensive national innovation history, illustrating actions of key actors in...

Low Carbon Energy and Development in Low-income Countries Policy Lessons from a Study of the Off-grid Photovoltaics Sector in Kenya

"Sustainable energy technologies could contribute significantly to human development and economic growth in low-income countries. Public policy has an important role to play in fostering the markets for these technologies. This briefing summarises key policy lessons from historical research explaining the success of the market for off-grid photovoltaics (PV) in Kenya (including solar home...

Cities and Rural Transformation a Spatial Analysis of Rural Youth Livelihoods in Ghana

"Urbanization has had a major impact on livelihoods in Ghana and throughout Africa as a whole. However, much research on urbanization has focused on effects occurring within cities, while there is insufficient understanding of its effects on rural areas. This paper examines the impact of urbanization— through a typology of districts—on rural livelihoods in Ghana. The country’s districts are...

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