West Africa

Research on West Africa focuses on regional integration, trade and cooperation, electoral processes and the consolidation of democratic institutions, as well as examining security threats and policy options for a more stable region.

Nigeria remains a priority focus country; further information can be found on the Nigeria research area page.

The Africa Programme analyses developments in Ghana through events and publications, and in recent years has hosted a number of key stakeholders, including then-leader of the opposition New Patriotic Party and now president of Ghana, Nana Akufo-Addo, former president John Dramani Mahama and former finance minister Seth Terkper.

2017 report, which is also available in French, examined governance in infrastructure development in Côte d’Ivoire and how it could help promote sustainable growth in the country. The programme also hosted the prime minister and the president of the National Assembly of Côte d’Ivoire.

An event in 2018 welcomed HE Adama Barrow, President of the Republic of the Gambia, to discuss his vision for the country’s future.

Expansion of work on the region continues, to include the politics of ECOWAS and deepening regional integration.

The 2019 research paper Mauritania’s Unfolding Landscape: Elections, Hydrocarbons and Socio-Economic Change assessed political and economic developments in Mauritania, and the country’s evolving regional role.

Working with Chatham House’s MENA programme, research into options for disrupting criminalized trade between Western Sahel and North Africa has begun.