First published in 1999, this volume is written by seasoned African scholars and is intended to make a significant contribution to the debate on peaceful coexistence and sustainable development in the continent. The book contains a very refreshing, rigorous, informative and multidisciplinary analysis of the transition in Africa and provides practical and effective policy options for Africans. It breaks new ground in that it emphasizes the importance of institutions to economic growth and development in Africa. As such, it differs significantly from previous efforts which have tended to blame Africa’s underdevelopment on incompetent, ill-informed and poorly educated leadership. While agreeing that the shortage of competent and skilled technocrats has been a significant problem for many African countries during the last four decades, the contributors argue that the most critical determinant of poverty and deprivation in the continent has been the absence of institutional arrangements that enhance the creation of wealth and allow ethnic and other social cleavages to live together peacefully. Thus, as Africans prepare their societies for the new century, the first line of business should be state reconstruction - a task that was supposed to have been undertaken shortly after independence but was never accomplished. The main purpose of such an exercise is for each African country to design and adopt institutional arrangements that enhance peaceful coexistence of groups, the creation of wealth, and sustainable development.
’Professor Mbaku and his colleagues have provided an outstanding collection of essays…In addition, they offer insightful prescriptions that effectively capture the complex socio-political and economic environment of African states…These essays are not only invaluable to policymakers and analysts, but also remind scholars to their moral responsibilities to African communities in the twenty-first century.’ Femi Vaughan, State University of New York at Stony Brook, USA ’The variety of subjects makes for a good sampler…Recommended for collections specializing in African studies and international development. Graduate students, faculty, and practitioners.’ Choice
1. General Introduction. John Mukum Mbaku. 2. Property Rights and the Exploitation of Africa’s Environmental Resources: Preparing for the New Millennium. John Mukum Mbaku. 3. Africa in the Twenty-First Century: the Challenges and Opportunities. Julius O. Ihonvbere. 4. Development in the New World Order: Repositioning Africa for the Twenty-First Century. Ufo Okeke Uzodike. 5. Democratization in Africa: a Balance Sheet. George Klay Kieh, Jr. 6. A Balance Sheet of Structural Adjustment in Africa: Towards a Sustainable Development Agenda. John Mukum Mbaku. 7. Ethnicity and Democracy in Sub-Saharan Africa. E. Ike Udogu. 8. The Future of Human Rights in Sub-Saharan Africa. Joseph Takougang. 9. Regionalism and the Politics of Collective Development in Africa. Julius O. Ihonvbere. 10. New Patterns of Civil-Military Relations in Africa. Pita Ogaba Agbese. 11. Woman: the Other Variable in Africa’s Development Struggle. Pat Williams. 12. Making the State Relevant to African Societies. John Mukum Mbaku. 13. Conclusions: Looking Forward to the New Century. John Mukum Mbaku.
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