Inclusive Economic Growth, Governance and Technology

Economic trajectories of states and regions are diverging, but all countries in Africa face the challenge of how to foster inclusive and sustainable growth, while also managing the impact of environmental change.

A ‘new normal’ of low oil prices, and the end of the commodity super cycle slowed growth in resource exporters.

But significantly, a number of economies remain strong amid changing global dynamics due to increased diversification; investment in infrastructure, energy, and transportation; fiscal and monetary discipline; rising incomes; and remittances. Mounting debt in several countries is a growing concern however.

The Africa Programme examines some of the key challenges of job creation, climate change and demographic shifts, with the continent’s population currently projected to reach a predominately youthful 2.4 billion people by 2050.

How to develop African businesses of scale that will create many quality jobs is a crucial question for the future and one which is examined in a 2017 report. In 2018 H.E. Uhuru Kenyatta, the first President of the Republic of Kenya to speak at Chatham House, discussed domestic priorities for inclusive growth.

On-going research examines transparency, inclusivity, and accountability of infrastructure investment, including in Côte d’IvoireAngola, and Mozambique.

Speakers hosted in 2018 included the finance ministers of ZimbabweNigeria and Somalia, and the President of the Republic of the Gambia, H.E. Adama Barrow, discussed his government’s National Development Plan.

The Africa Programme is assessing the role of technology in influencing socio-economic change in Africa, and its potential for accelerating development and improving civic engagement. In 2018, the Common Futures Conversations project was launched in partnership with the Robert Bosch Stiftung.

This project will create an online platform bringing together young people from Africa and Europe to exchange ideas on common issues in international affairs that affect young people in their countries. In 2017, HE Ameenah Gurib-Fakim, President of the Republic of Mauritius, discussed the role of technology in driving forward development.

A research paper on the subject of tackling illegal wildlife trade (IWT) in Africa, launched at the London Conference on IWT, argues that conservation-driven development efforts could help foster considerable economic benefits for African countries.

A conference in Nairobi, and events in London on financial inclusion and micro-insurance have informed research on expanding access to financial services on the continent.