Business, Politics and the State in Africa: Challenging the Orthodoxies on Growth and Transformation

7 Jan 2013

New book and blog by Tim Kelsall

New book: Business, Politics and the State in Africa: Challenging the Orthodoxies on Growth and Transformation, Tim Kelsall, Zed Books Ltd, January 2013

'Tim Kelsall has written a seminal book...  advances the debate on governance and development into a new and more productive field, and is sure to stand as a key text for the next decade.' Alex de Waal, Executive Director, World Peace Foundation

Commentators are beginning to ask whether emerging from Africa is a new generation of 'lion' economies to challenge the East Asian 'tigers'? This book goes behind the headlines to examine the conditions necessary not just for growth in Africa but for a wider business and economic transformation. Contrary to neo-liberal economics, it argues that governments can play an important role in this through selective interventions to correct market failures, and, controversially, that 'neo-patrimonial' governance need not necessarily be an obstacle to improved business and economic conditions. Drawing on timely case studies - including Rwanda, Ethiopia, Tanzania and Ghana - this provocative book provides a radical new theory of the political and institutional conditions required for pro-poor growth in Africa.

You can purchase a copy of the book here

More reviews:

'It is delightful to be puzzling more over Africa's successes than its failures. It is great to read a book that both helps us to puzzle and points to the likely answers. When all that is done in clear prose, we have something well worth reading.' Mick Moore, Professorial Fellow, Institute of Development Studies

‘The author’s findings and conclusions are sure to be profoundly discomfiting for practitioners - in ways which contribute to, and hopefully will help, spur the new thinking which is urgently needed.' Brian Levy, School of Advanced International Studies, Johns Hopkins University and University of Cape Town, and formerly a World Bank governance adviser

New Blog: Africa and the Succession Trap, Tim Kelsall, African Arguments, January 2013

2012 was a tough year for African leaders: one resigned, one was sacked, two were overthrown in coups, two were defeated in elections, and three died in office. Even in states like Angola where incumbents remained in power, the question of leadership succession was rarely far from the agenda. In 2013 we can expect the topic also to be hot in Madagascar, Kenya and Zimbabwe, all scheduled to hold Presidential elections later this year.  You can read the blog here.

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National incentive for Civic Education, Karonga, Malawi - Vikki Chambers