The image of Sweden is one of a small, democratic and peace-loving country without the moral burden of a colonial past. However, in this Current African Issues publication, the notion that Sweden lacks a colonial past in Africa is brought into question. At the Berlin Conference 1884–85, the rules for colonisation of Africa were agreed upon among a handful of white men. With the blessing of King Oscar II, the united kingdoms of Sweden-Norway participated in the Berlin conference, ratified the resulting convention and signed a trade agreement with King Leopold’s International Congo Association. Thereafter, hundreds of Swedish militaries, seamen and missionaries took an active part in the brutal colonial project in the Congo. What was Sweden-Norway really doing at the Berlin Conference and in the ensuing Scramble for Africa? Is it now time to re-assess Swedish identity in relation to Africa, an identity so far centered on colonial innocence? Dr DAVID NILSSON is a researcher at the Division of History of Science, Technology and Environment, Royal Institute of Technology, Sweden. His research focuses on global longtermperspectives on sustainable development in Africa. Available for free download from our open archive (opens in new window).
The subject of food security and land issues in Africa has become one of increased importance and contention over recent years. In particular, the focus has shifted to the role new Global South donors - in particular India, China and Brazil - are playing in shaping African agriculture through their increased involvement and investment in the continent.
Approaching the topic through the framework of South-South co-operation (SSC), this highly original volume presents a critical analysis of the ways in which Chinese, Indian and Brazilian engagements in African agriculture are structured and implemented. Do these investments have the potential to create new opportunities to improve local living standards, transfer new technology and knowhow to African producers, and reverse the persistent productivity decline in African agriculture? Or will they simply aggravate the problem of food insecurity by accelerating the process of land alienation and displacement of local people from their land?
Topical and comprehensive, ‘Agricultural Development and Food Security in Africa’ offers fresh insight into a set of relationships that will shape both Africa and the world over the coming decades.
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The fall of authoritarian regimes in Tunisia, Egypt and Libya has changed political dynamics on the African continent. One immediate concern has been the implications of these developments for the African Union (AU) and its member states. Would overall political dynamics in the AU be changed? Would the most powerful member states use the altered circumstances to enhance their influence on AU policies andframeworks? What would the impact be for the AU's overall authority? In this Discussion Paper series, three edited papers are presented that tackle AU political and institutional dynamics in light of the Arab revolts. A particular puzzle addressed is the current postures of South Africa,Ethiopia and Algeria within the AU. A separate analysis of Nigeria's role was published earlier in the NAI-FOI Lecture Series on African Security.
The work in this discussion series reflects the longstanding collaboration between the Swedish Defence Research Agency's Project Studies in African Security and the Nordic Africa Institute to build Africa-related research capacity on peace and security. Dowload from our open archive (opens in new window).
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The Nordic Africa Institute's library provides access to many resources in electronic and printed format, which support research about Africa and related areas. Find more information about the library.
Researching Africa. From Individual efforts to Structured Programmes. The role of the Nordic Africa Institute. A report to the NAI 50th anniversary. By Michael Ståhl.
The Nordic Africa Institute started on a modest scale back in 1962 by awarding three travel grants to young Nordic scholars with an interest in Africa. Fifty years later, the institute has become an internationally renowned centre of research, documentation, publishing and net-working.