The Political and Social Context of Structural Adjustment in Sub-Saharan Africa

Programme Co-ordinators: Peter Gibbon and Adebayo Olukoshi
The programme was established in 1990 and ended in 2000
The research programme was launched in 1990. Its first phase, co-ordinated by Peter Gibbon, ran for four years until October 1994. The second phase was launched in October 1994 under the co-ordinatorship of Adebayo Olukoshi. The main thrust of the programme is the study of the socio-economic and political consequences of structural adjustment implementation by African countries. With specific reference to the second phase of the programme, empirical work, which is being carried out in Africa by researchers constituted into two networks, covers four main themes, namely,

  1. the private trading networks and structures that are emerging in various African countries as the state is retrenched;
  2. the new land uses that are associated with changes in the structure of incentives brought about by structural adjustment;
  3. emerging forms of popular social provisioning as structural adjustment limits access by many to modern social services;
  4. the decomposition and recomposition of popular political identities during the crisis and adjustment years.

Since the launch of the programme in 1990, some 20 publications have been produced, including seminar proceedings, book-length reports, monographs, discussion papers and journal articles. The main emphasis of the programme is on empirically-grounded studies that also are framed to contribute to the conceptual debates about the contemporary political economy of Africa. Some of the publications from the programme worth mentioning here include

  • Authoritarianism, Democracy and Adjustment
  • Liberalised Development in Tanzania
  • Structural Adjustment and the Working Poor in Zimbabwe
  • Markets, Civil society and Democracy in Kenya
  • Challenges to the Nation-state in Africa
  • Structural Adjustment and Socio-Economic Change in Sub-saharan Africa
  • The Politics of Opposition in Contemporary Africa
  • The Elusive Prince of Denmark: Structural Adjustment and Governance in Africa

Complete list of publications

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