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Oxford Research Network on Government in Africa (OReNGA)

The Department of Politics and International Relations, the Faculty of History, and the Department of International Development: Queen Elizabeth House have established the Oxford Research Network on Government in Africa.

The study of African politics in Oxford has always been distinguished by its historical orientation, its comparative perspectives and its contemporary relevance. The Research Network focuses on ‘governments’ and of ‘governance’ in Africa at the present as well as the colonial and post-colonial periods. We are interested in: the continuities of institutional forms; the imperial and international contexts of national politics; the formation of social and political identities and loyalties; public policies and their implementation; political stability, competition and conflict; and political changes and their consequences.

The work encompasses the central concerns of current research and debates about forms of rule, public policies and politics in Africa from the colonial period to the present. These include: colonial rule and nationalism; one-party, military and multi-party governments; civil society, democracy and political representation; land and agricultural policies; the politics of economic reform; class, race, and ethnic inequalities and conflicts; regional institutions, international organizations and conflict management.

OReNGA continues to organize the seminar on African History and Politics, which will take place this year in the Department of Politics and International Relations in Manor Road on Mondays at 5 p.m. As part of this series we have arranged three public lectures in the Department, to mark the inauguration of the the Research Network:

  • 16 January, John Lonsdale, Trinity College, Cambridge: The Politics of Competitive African Patriotism: Lessons from the Colonial Frontier. This will be followed by a reception in the Common Room.
  • 20 February, The Hon. Nana Akufo Addo, Foreign Minister of the Republic of Ghana, Ghana: the Democratic Project – Changes and Prospects. This will be followed by a reception in the Common Room.
  • 6 March, Abdul Rauf Mustapha, Queen Elizabeth House, Peasants and Democratization in Nigeria. This will be followed by a reception in the Common Room.

On 11 February, a workshop will take place in the Department of Politics and International Relations on ‘The State and Ethnic Definition’ organised by Kathryn Nwajiaku, with additional support from the Department, the Royal Africa Society, the Oxford University African Studies Centre and the European Research Group.