Capacity for Regional Development and Economic Integration in Africa

Monday 5 May 2014

Note: In this recording, the audio is loud and poor quality at the beginning during the introduction, but is much better when the presenters start speaking.  You may wish to skip ahead to 17:37 in the recording to start listening to the first presenter.

Timestamps in the recording:

  • 0:00 Introduction by Cristina d'Alessandro, ACBF
  • 17:37 Presentation by William Moseley, Macalester College, Saint Paul, Minnesota, USA
  • 50:50 Presentation by Olawale Ismail, International Alert and King’s College London

Presentation slides:

This event will remain open for text-based discussion for one week after the live broadcast, during which the panelists will be available to respond to questions online.  Please leave questions and comments using the comment facility at the bottom of this page

African Capacity Building Foundation

African Community of PracticeCommunaute Africaine de Pratiques

Regionalism is the deliberate attempt by states to create formal mechanisms for dealing with transnational issues. There is strong support for regionalism and economic integration in Africa as a strategy for advancing its socio-economic endeavors, but previous attempts have yielded minimal economic benefits. For Africa to realize regionalism and economic integration, the ‘New’ regionalism has to address past failures (e.g. multiplicity and overlapping membership, reliance on donor funds and lack of commitment among others).

This ACBF webinar focuses on the capacity development dynamics impacting this continental agenda. The webinar will:

  1. Interrogate the capacity development issues, challenges, opportunities and possibilities for regionalism and economic integration in Africa.
  2. Examine issues, challenges, opportunities and possibilities facing inter-country (macro) and cross-border (micro) regionalism and economic integration.
  3. Extract lessons from practice of what is working and what is not in Africa.

Regional value chains and productivity enhancements: the cases of rice and cacao in West Africa

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Professor William Moseley, Chair of Geography, Director of African Studies, Macalester College, Saint Paul, Minnesota, USA

Value chains have become a central focus of economic development activities in recent years.   While initiatives to facilitate value chain development have occurred largely within the borders of nation states, there is increasing interest in creating value chains that span African boundaries.  The presentation explores what kind of policies and capacity building initiatives would be most effective for allowing Africa to better capitalize on cross-border value chain opportunities for economic development and improved livelihoods.  The presentation highlights two case studies: the first examining a West African regional rice market; and the second exploring shared cacao processing and chocolate production between Ghana and Côte d’Ivoire.

Olawale IsmailRegional security by observation: assessing regional responses to the Boko Haram crisis

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Dr. Olawale Ismail, Head of Research at International Alert and Research Associate/Fellow at the Conflict, Security and Development Group (CSDG), King’s College London.

Regional security and conflict management mechanisms dot Africa’s security landscape in ways that suggest they are ‘ritualized’ as ‘canons’ of peace and security. The Boko Haram insurgency in the Chad Basin as an emerging regional security challenge raises critical questions for orthodox regional security institutions in Africa: First is to what extent can the vectors of regional security in Africa – Regional Economic Communities (RECs) – provide or deliver regional security as envisaged in extant policy declarations? Secondly, what are the specific conceptual and policy lessons to be learned in terms of capacity(ies) missing or needed; what works well and less well? Thirdly, what are the impacts of the responses on orthodox regional security systems and mechanisms – are they compatible and interoperable, or represent rival visions of regional security arrangement?

Organizing partners

African Capacity Building Foundation (ACBF)

ACBF has a leading role in capacity development in Africa. The Foundation provides  support to strengthen the core public sector and its interface with the private sector and civil society, and to regional initiatives in the areas of training, policy analysis, applied policy research, trade policy development and negotiations as well as policy advocacy.  It support for the emergence of institutional frameworks for country ownership and coordination of capacity-building activities and the emergence of knowledge-based economies in Africa. In organizing the webinar the ACBF Knowledge and Learning (K&L) Department collaborates also with AfCoP

The African Community of Practice / Communauté Africaine de Pratiques

'The AfCoP’s goal is to build African MfDR capacity through sharing experiences and development solutions for results, networking and building strong learning relationships with MfDR practitioners in Africa and around the world. The AfCoP online platform plays a key role in organizing knowledge sharing activities.

Event details
Monday, 5 May, 2014
Online webinar
Event type: 
LenCD network event