Economic Growth and Development in Africa: Understanding trends and prospects, 1st Edition (Paperback) book cover

Economic Growth and Development in Africa

Understanding trends and prospects, 1st Edition

By Horman Chitonge


314 pages

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Paperback: 9781138226029
pub: 2016-08-26
Hardback: 9781138826809
pub: 2015-01-15
eBook (VitalSource) : 9781315738963
pub: 2015-01-09
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In recent years, Africa has undergone the longest period of sustained economic growth in the continent’s history, drawing the attention of the international media and academics alike. This book analyses the Africa Rising narrative from multidisciplinary perspectives, offering a critical assessment of the explanations given for the poor economic growth and development performance in Africa prior to the millennium and the dramatic shift towards the new Africa.

Bringing in perspectives from African intellectuals and scholars, many of whom have previously been overlooked in this debate, the book examines the construction of Africa’s economic growth and development portraits over the years. It looks at two institutions that play a vital role in African development, providing a detailed explanation of how the World Bank and the IMF have interpreted and dealt with the African challenges and experiences. The insightful analysis reveals that if Africa is rising, only 20-30 per cent of Africans are aboard the rising ship, and the main challenge facing the continent today is to bring on board the majority of Africans who have been excluded from growth.

This book makes the complex, and sometimes confusing debates on Africa’s economic growth experience more accessible to a wide range of readers interested in the Africa story. It is essential reading for students and researchers in African Studies, and will be of great interest to scholars in Development Studies, Political Economy, and Development Economics.


"Horman Chitonge’s impressive, wide-ranging and multidisciplinary account of Africa’s development challenges orthodox explanations of its position in the world and provides a fresh perspective to aid academics and practitioners, especially from the continent itself, who seek to understand its past and shape its future."

Peter Lawrence, Keele University, UK

"Chitonge challenges us to understand ‘the challenge itself’ – and that is to cast off the epistemological straitjackets that have constrained our approaches to Africa’s political economy for the past centuries. This book is an essential starting point for that process: read it, and go forward on Chitonge’s new paths."

David Moore, University of Johannesburg, South Africa

Table of Contents

1. In Search of the 'Africa Dummy' 2. The World Bank and IMF in Africa: The Project Lending Era 3. The Bank and IMF in Africa: The SAPs and Beyond 4. Africa's Economic Growth Experience in Empirical Growth Studies 5. The State and Development in Africa 6. The Political Economy of Africa's Economic Growth and Development Experience 7. Africa Rising: Changing Fortunes or another 'False Start'? 8. African Intellectuals and the African Growth and Development Challenges

About the Author

Horman Chitonge is a senior researcher at the Centre for African Studies, University of Cape Town, South Africa. He holds a PhD in Development Studies from the University of KwaZulu-Natal and has taught development theory and policy on Africa at various African universities. His research interests include access to water and land, poverty, and alternatives for Africa’s economic growth and transformation.

About the Series

Routledge Studies in African Development

The series features innovative and original research on African development from scholars both within and outside of Africa. It particularly promotes comparative and interdisciplinary research targeted at a global readership.

In terms of theory and method, rather than basing itself on any one orthodoxy, the series draws broadly on the tool kit of the social sciences in general, emphasizing comparison, the analysis of the structure and processes, and the application of qualitative and quantitative methods.

The series welcomes submissions from established and junior authors on cutting-edge and high-level research on key topics that feature in global news and public debate. To submit proposals, please contact the Editor, Helena Hurd (

Learn more…

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
BUSINESS & ECONOMICS / Development / Sustainable Development
POLITICAL SCIENCE / Public Policy / Environmental Policy