21st COE Program Seminar
Public Seminar on African Area Studies

Date: Thursday, June 30, 2005 15:00 - 17:00

Venue: Graduate School of Asian and African Area Studies, Kyoto University, Seminar Room (#207) on the East Building, 2nd Floor. (46 Shimoadachi-cho, Yoshida, Sakyo-ku, Kyoto)

Title :"Strategies and current challenges of African Economic development"

Speaker :Dr. Jean-Claude Maswana (Lecturer, Graduate School of Economics, Kyoto University)

Africa's economic history since 1960 fits the classical definition of tragedy: potential unfulfilled with disastrous consequences: economic growth rates are still not high enough to make a real reduction in the pervasive poverty. Investment remains subdued, limiting the efforts to diversify economic structures and accelerate growth. On average, real per capita GDP did not grow in Africa over the 1965-2000 period, while, in East Asia and the Pacific, per capita GDP growth was over five percent and Latin America grew at almost two percent per year.

 This tragedy has drawn considerable attention but has not been able to look into sources of ideas that support policy options. In an attempt to fill in this missing debate, the present talk reviews alternative paradigms and approaches (mainly structuralist, basic needs and neo-classical theory) that have emerged in development economics and places in perspective the reasons for Africa's poor performance. A key feature of the African growth experience is that it is predominantly unpredictable as a result of long term policy inconsistency. A key question of interest is what explains the policy choices underlying these episodic anti-growth options. The main storyline is that global ideas have had a powerful role in shaping the growth environment in African countries primarily through their influence in the formulation of country development strategies.

Center for African Area Studies, Kyoto University
TEL:075-753-7821 FAX:075-753-7810


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