Afrikanische Entwicklungsperspektiven

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30.04.2022
Sustainable Development Goal Nine And African Development – Challenges And Opportunities

Volume 22 (2020/21) of the African Development Perspectives Yearbook was published in 2021 by the Research Group on African Development Perspectives Bremen and LIT Publishers. The team of editors  (Tobias Knedlik, Samia Satti Osman Mohamed Nour, Anthony Ifeanyi Ugulu, and Karl Wohlmuth) have finalized the publication project at mid-2021. The volume 22 has three Units. The Unit 1 is on “Sustainable Development Goal Nine and Africa Development – Continental Perspectives”. The focus in the Unit 1 is on continental African issues of SDG 9. Unit 2 is on “Sustainable Development Goal  Nine and Achievements by Countries, Sectors and Targets”. The focus is to assess the performance on SDG 9 for sector cases (financial services and agriculture, energy and transport infrastructure, mining and social welfare). Unit 3 is on “Book Reviews and Book Notes”, mainly related to the publication on Sustainable Development Goals and explicitly on Sustainable Development Goal Nine.

A great number of experts have contributed to this impressive volume, which is one of the few publications highlighting the fundamental and complex issues around SDG 9 for Africa. The African Development Perspectives Yearbook is now an open access publication and is a peer-reviewed academic product. Over the decades (since the start of the publication project in 1989) the African Development Perspectives Yearbook, which is released annually from the Africa Research Group at the University of Bremen, became the leading English-language publication on Africa in Germany. As each issue has also a focus on Strategy, the book is of interest for African policymakers, donor agencies, journalists and media, regional and international organizations. As the 30 years Anniversary was celebrated in 2019, a Festschrift of contributors and supporters was published which contains a lot of information about the achievements and on the perspectives for the future work: https://media.suub.uni-bremen.de/handle/elib/4652?locale=de, and: https://doi.org/10.26092/elib/449

The new volume of the African Development Perspectives Yearbook for 2020/2021



Access for Download to Open Access and E-Book:
https://www.lit-verlag.de/isbn/978-3-643-91404-0

The book is described by the volume editors as follows: “Volume 22 (2020/2021) of the African Development Perspectives Yearbook with the title “Sustainable Development Goal Nine and African Development – Challenges and Opportunities” focusses on the relevance of Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 9 (“Build resilient infrastructure, promote inclusive and sustainable industrialization, and foster innovation") for Africa’s development. In three Units key issues in the context of SDG 9 are analysed at the continental level and in country case studies.
Unit 1 presents in four essays the African continental perspectives and achievements - on developing productive capacities towards sustainable industrialization, supporting frugal innovations for bottom-of-the pyramid households, reorganising commodity-based industrialization through the African Continental Free Trade Agreement, and making foreign direct investment work for inclusive growth and sustainable industrialisation.
Unit 2 presents six essays which are focussing on aspects of the eight targets of SDG 9. Two essays discuss perspectives of agro-industrial development and of financial innovations for Sudan and Nigeria; two essays consider the future of renewable energy projects in urban and rural areas of Nigeria and Cameroon; and two further essays analyse the importance of the roads system in Sudan for structural transformation and the role of sustainable mining activities in support of social infrastructure for Zimbabwe and South Africa.
Unit 3 presents book reviews and book notes in the context of SDG 9, classified around 11 categories. Reviewed are publications on SDG 9 and interlinkages with other SDGs, global and regional reports of relevance for Africa, and new books on African studies.
Volume 22 of the African Development Perspectives Yearbook is the first publication on the relevance of SDG 9 for African development.”

The theme “Sustainable Development Goal Nine And African Development – Challenges And Opportunities” is now of great importance for international development because assessing the performance of the Sustainable Development Goals has become a huge global task to guide politics. And, the SDGs are negatively affected by COVID-19 so that new actions are requested to reach the goals in difficult times. Various organizations do researches in and for Africa to assess the performance of the SDGs.

Important actors and analyses are found in the following links and texts:

UNIDO, Africa and SDG 9: https://www.unido.org/who-we-are/unido-and-sdgs/africa-and-sdg-9
UNDP, Goal 9, Industry, Innovation and Infrastructure: https://www.africa.undp.org/content/rba/en/home/sustainable-development-goals/goal-9-industry-innovation-and-infrastructure.html
United Nations South Africa, Sustainable Development Goal 9, Industry, Innovation and Infrastructure: https://southafrica.un.org/en/sdgs/9
United Nations, SDG 9,Build resilient infrastructure, promote inclusive and sustainable industrialization and foster innovation”: https://sdgs.un.org/goals/goal9
The Global Goals, SDG 9, Industry, Innovation and Infrastructure: https://www.globalgoals.org/goals/9-industry-innovation-and-infrastructure/
The Sustainable Development Goals Centre for Africa, the SDGs and the Sustainable Development Goal 9: https://www.facebook.com/SDGCAfrica/
West African SDGC/A Sub-regional Centre in Monrovia, Liberia (about the establishment of a new SDGC/A centre): http://sdg.iisd.org/news/sdgs-center-for-africa-establishes-west-african-center/
UNECA (IPRT/Integrated Planning and Reporting Toolkit) and SDG 9: https://iprt.uneca.org/agenda/sdg/overview/9
African Development Bank (AfDB), Mission & Strategy, the Bank’s work around the SDGs: https://www.afdb.org/en/about/mission-strategy

The editors of volume 22 of the African Development Perspectives Yearbook had the privilege to cooperate with many of these organisations and with various other research and policy institutions doing projects on the SDGs in and for Africa.

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26.08.2021
Elke Grawert und die Afrikaforschung am IWIM – Ein Nachruf



Elke Grawert, Bremen, 13. November 1958 - 5. März 2021

Frau PD Dr. Elke Grawert ist am Freitag, 5. März 2021 nach schwerer Krankheit gestorben. Der Verlust ist überaus groß – für ihre Söhne, ihre FreundInnen, ihre Kollegen. Das IWIM verdankt ihr viele wichtige Initiativen und Forschungsarbeiten, die zur Reputation dieses universitären Instituts wesentlich beigetragen haben. Sie hat sich in weiten Bereichen der Afrika-, Friedens- und Konfliktforschung betätigt, als Forscherin, als Lehrende, als Beraterin, als Netzwerkerin und als einfühlsame Gesprächspartnerin. Sie hat im klassischen Sinne Feldforschung betrieben und inmitten der Bevölkerung im Sudan, in Tansania und in anderen Ländern des Südens gelebt und gearbeitet. Sie hat die lokale Bevölkerung in ihren Haushalten besucht, bei deren täglicher Arbeit begleitet und beobachtet, Frauen und Männer in entlegenen Dörfern interviewt, und intensive Erhebungen zur Lebensweise und Arbeit von Frauen, deren Männer aus Erwerbsgründen migrierten,  durchgeführt. In vielen Publikationen von Elke Grawert finden sich diese empirischen Erhebungen in methodisch mustergültiger Weise verarbeitet. Zu ihrer letzten beruflichen Station am BICC (Bonn International Center for Conversion)  liegt ein Nachruf vom Direktor des BICC vor. In der Zeit am BICC seit 2010 hat sie sich mit wichtigen Themen der Konflikt- und Friedensforschung befasst. Zu erwähnen sind beispielsweise Arbeiten zur Friedenssicherung in Afghanistan durch konfliktsensitive Beschäftigungsinitiativen und Forschungen zur Verknüpfung von geschäftlichen Interessen des Militärs und der Unternehmen in arabischen Ländern. In ihrer Zeit am BICC hat sie im Juli 2012 an der Universität Bonn die 9th International Sudan Studies Conference ausgerichtet und mehrere hundert Sudanforscherinnen und -forscher aus aller Welt zum wissenschaftlichen Austausch versammelt. Die Tagung wurde ein großer wissenschaftlicher Erfolg.

Vor ihrer Zeit als Senior Research Fellow am BICC war sie in mehreren Funktionen an der Universität Bremen tätig. Sie kooperierte mit dem Forschungsteam von Prof. Dr. Karl Wohlmuth in mehreren Publikations- und Forschungsprojekten zum Sudan und zu anderen afrikanischen Ländern und mit Prof. Dr. Michaela von Freyhold im Rahmen von neu eingerichteten internationalen entwicklungspolitischen Studiengängen. Hier wird über ihre ersten wissenschaftlichen Arbeiten an der  Universität Bremen und über ihre Zeit am IWIM (Institut für Weltwirtschaft und Internationales Management)  berichtet. Sie gehörte zu den Gründern des African Development Perspectives Yearbook, dem englischsprachigen Afrika-Jahrbuch, das an der Universität Bremen seit1989 herausgegeben wird. Bereits am Band 2 (1990/91) war sie beteiligt - mit einer Unit (einem Themenkomplex mit mehreren Aufsätzen) mit dem Titel „Women’s Participation in the Industrialization Process - Problems and Perspectives“. Am Band 3 (1992/93) war sie mit der Unit “Household Energy Systems” beteiligt, und am Band 7 (1999) mit der Unit „Self-Help, Self-Organization, and Empowerment of Disadvantaged Rural and Urban Population Groups“. Am Band 8 (2000/2001) bearbeitete sie die Unit „African Women in the Globalising Economy“. Die Themen, die sie als Mitarbeiterin bzw. als Mitherausgeberin des Afrika-Jahrbuchs besetzte, hatten mit Partizipation von gesellschaftlichen Gruppen, mit der Stärkung der Position und der Lebens- und Arbeitsbedingungen von Frauen, mit der Rolle von Frauen als Unternehmerinnen, und mit der Förderung der Zivilgesellschaft durch lokale Initiativen zu tun. Sie war ein sehr geschätztes Redaktionsmitglied der Herausgebergruppe des Afrika-Jahrbuchs. Mit ihrem schnell anwachsenden wissenschaftlichen Netzwerk war sie sehr hilfreich bei der Themenfindung und -formulierung.

Frau Elke Grawert wurde aufgrund ihrer Sudanforschungsinteressen nach Bremen eingeladen. In der Sudanforschungsgruppe Bremen hat sie viele Jahre aktiv mitgearbeitet, zahlreiche Forschungsvorhaben angestoßen und viele Publikationen erarbeitet. Sie hat auch ihre Dissertation in Bremen angefertigt. Ihre Bücher und Sammelbände konnte sie immer in erstklassigen Verlagen unterbringen. Die Dissertation mit dem Titel “Making A Living In Rural Sudan. Production of Women, Labour Migration of Men, and Policies for Peasants’ Needs”  ist 1998 bei Macmillan Press Ltd erschienen. Sie entwickelte einen Ansatz, in dem sie vier Ebenen integrierte: eine Analyse der ländlichen Entwicklung und der Lebensbedingungen der bäuerlichen Bevölkerung, eine Analyse der Ernährungssicherung, eine Analyse der spezifischen Situation von Frauen in ländlichen Gegenden, und eine Analyse der Migrationsprozesse. Durch moderne Feldforschungsmethoden konnte sie wichtige Ergebnisse erzielen; sie nahm sich immer ausreichend Zeit für ihre Feldforschungsaufenthalte. Für ihre Dissertation etwa war sie von Februar bis September 1988 in Kutum, Nord-Darfur, Sudan, um durch Beobachtung und Interviews Daten für ihre Arbeit zu erheben. Sie lebte dort unter vergleichbaren Bedingungen wie die lokale Bevölkerung, wie die Personen in jenen Haushalten, die sie analysierte. Durch die Beobachtung der Lebens- und Arbeitsbedingungen erarbeitete sie sich ein Verständnis der Struktur der Haushalte und der Arbeitswelt in Kutum, Nord-Darfur; durch Interviews mit Frauen konnte sie deren tägliche Aktivitäten kennenlernen und sich ein Bild von der Gesellschaft und Wirtschaft in Kutum erarbeiten. Ihr Interesse galt vor allem der neuen lokalen Arbeitsteilung und der Arbeitslast der Frauen nach der Erwerbsmigration der Männer. Die präzise Analyse in ihrer Dissertation hat wohl zahlreiche Sudanforscher/Innen angeregt, ihre theoretischen Fragestellungen weiter zu vertiefen.

Aber auch an vielen anderen sudanspezifischen Forschungsarbeiten war Elke Grawert beteiligt. Sie hat etwa ein Forschungsprojekt zur Wanderarbeit im Sahel durchgeführt und 1994 einen wichtigen Band über die Ergebnisse einer  Konferenz zu dem Thema veröffentlicht. Der Band über „Wandern oder bleiben? Veränderungen der Lebenssituation von Frauen im Sahel durch die Arbeitsmigration der Männer“ war der Versuch, den Analyserahmen von ihrem Dissertationsthema auch für andere Sahelländer zu nutzen. Die Publikation umfasst Fallstudien in acht verschiedenen Orten von vier Sahelländern mit Ergebnissen dazu, wie sich die Arbeits- und Lebensbedingungen von Frauen durch die Migration der Männer verändern. Die Studien zu Orten im Sudan, in Mali, in Burkina Faso und im Senegal zeigen wichtige Muster und Reaktionsweisen auf, was Frauen erleben und wie Frauen in solchen Situationen reagieren. Die Konferenz und die Publikation zeigen auch die Arbeitsweise von Frau Grawert – Frauen berichten über ihre Feldforschungen bei Frauen in afrikanischen Ländern. Unterbelichtete Bereiche der Migrationsforschung wurden sehr konsequent analysiert; das Material wurde handlungsorientiert aufbereitet. Es ging Frau Grawert immer um Wege, wie Frauen ihre Lage vor Ort verbessern können - die Auswirkungen der Arbeitsmigration auf die Ernährungssicherung, auf die geschlechtsspezifische Arbeitsteilung, auf die natürliche Umwelt, und ganz allgemein auf die Handlungsspielräume, die ein Bleiben im Sahel ermöglichen. Auch im Inter-University Centre (IUC) Dubrovnik hat Frau Grawert mehrere Kursprogramme der Universität Bremen bzw. des IWIM unterstützt. Sie nahm gerne die Möglichkeit wahr, als Dozentin bei internationalen Konferenzen über ihre Forschungsergebnisse zu referieren.

Und nun zum Meisterwerk von Elke Grawert. Von größter Bedeutung für die Sudanforschung des IWIM war ihr Engagement für das große Forschungsprojekt „Governance and Social Action in Sudan after the Peace Agreement of January 2005: Local, National, and Regional Dimensions“, das großzügig von der VolkswagenStiftung gefördert wurde. Dieses Forschungsprojekt sollte unmittelbar nach dem Friedensabkommen vom Januar 2005 die Regierungsführung im Sudan durch wissenschaftliche Expertise, durch Ausbildungsprogramme und durch Beratung unterstützen. Die Friedensvereinbarungen zwischen der südsudanesischen Befreiungsfront SPLM und der sudanesischen Regierung in Khartum waren bedeutsam, mussten aber durch internationale solidarische Aktionen unterstützt und stabilisiert werden. Das Projekt startete unmittelbar nach dem Friedensabkommen vom 9. Januar 2005 und endete erst im September 2012 mit der  Übergabe des Endberichtes an die VolkswagenStiftung; immer wieder wurde das Projekt verlängert, auch um die Zeit nach der Unabhängigkeit des Südsudan (9. Januar 2011) noch einzubeziehen. Das Projekt war nicht nur ein Forschungsprojekt, sondern auch ein Ausbildungsprojekt, da auch Masterstudien und Doktoratsstudien im Sudan, in Kenia und in Äthiopien gefördert wurden. Die StudentInnen arbeiteten zu Themen, die mit der Umsetzung des Friedensabkommens im Zusammenhang standen. Die Nachbarländer des Sudan (Kenia und Äthiopien) wurden einbezogen, weil Millionen von sudanesischen Flüchtlingen in Lagern dieser Länder lebten und auf eine geordnete Rückführung in ihre Heimatgebiete hofften. Dieses Projekt hat wichtige Forschungen zum Sudan angeregt, insbesondere hinsichtlich der Chancen für einen Neustart der Beziehungen zwischen dem von der SPLM kontrollierten autonomen und dann unabhängigen Südsudan und der Regierung des Sudan unter Präsident Al-Bashir in Khartum. Das Netzwerk der Bremer Sudanforschung wurde durch das Projekt stark ausgeweitet. Das Projekt war aber auch ein Beratungsprojekt, da Regierungsbehörden im Sudan/Südsudan und UN-Organisationen durchaus an den Ergebnissen der Forschungsarbeit interessiert waren. Frau Grawert hat die Funktion als Projektkoordinatorin akribisch ausgefüllt; die wissenschaftliche und die organisatorische Koordination klappte vorbildlich. Die afrikanischen Wissenschaftler wurden sehr gut in die Projektarbeit integriert, und eine Vielzahl von Publikationen wurde zum Projektthema verfasst. Frau Grawert hat sich intensiv darum bemüht, afrikanischen Nachwuchswissenschaftler/Innen aus den Projektländern Publikationschancen zu bieten.

Wir werden Elke Grawert dankbar in Erinnerung behalten.

Professor Dr. Karl Wohlmuth
IWIM, Fachbereich Wirtschaftswissenschaft,
Universität Bremen

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26.08.2021
Global Technology Trends and Adaptations of Enterprises in Africa – A new Research Report by Professor Karl Wohlmuth

Professor Karl Wohlmuth has written a new research report on global technology trends and the adaptations of enterprises in Africa (see the PDF in the Blue Series Discussion Papers of IWIM: PDF-Langfassung-WWC-Heft Nummer 129). This report is part of the research programme by the professor on “Digital Transformation in Africa”.

In this contribution it is investigated how African countries can benefit from global technological developments, based on their own technological and scientific competencies and their institutional systems of innovation. The global technological dynamics reveals that the speed of technological development is increasing rapidly, what has to do with the new digital competencies which are prevalent in society and which are intensively used in science, technology, and innovation (STI) activities. Also, the global innovation competition is increasing, and it will further intensify. Africa will be able to benefit from these global technological developments if policies are adapted so that technology absorption and digital transformation are progressing. Windows of opportunity are emerging as the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) advances in implementation. In the phase 2 of the AfCFTA an African Common Market will be established, so that the African enterprises will face a new environment for their businesses; competition and market development will be enhanced. In this context also the technologies for the Fourth Industrial Revolution (4IR) will be used to increase the productivity of the African companies, but these technologies also matter for various social areas and public policy fields, such as health, sanitation, and education. The COVID-19 crisis has given evidence that the digital transformation was accelerating in recent months in Africa; the 4IR technologies are used already in the health sectors of the African countries (but also in other sectors). It is becoming obvious that technological catching-up is determined strongly by the speed of digital transformation. The African Leapfrog Index (ALI) is a useful instrument and measures how African countries can leapfrog new global technologies through their own STI institutions and the available national innovation capacities. The African Leapfrog Index shows that catching-up processes can be very dynamic in Africa, although there are significant differences between countries and sectors in the processes of digital and technological change. The initial structure of the country, the economic geography, the digital and technological readiness, and the policies pursued matter a lot.

Most relevant for digital and technological catching-up processes in Africa are the enterprises (small and large ones, domestic and foreign ones, those in state’s property and those in private property). When considering the dynamics of enterprises in Africa, one can see that there are enterprises which have the ability and strength to shape the market conditions and to reconstruct the business conditions in markets (the so-called “African Challengers”, a term introduced by The Boston Consulting Group/BCG). But there are also some few enterprises in Africa which have global importance in affecting markets and business conditions (the so-called “Global Challengers”, also a term introduced by The Boston Consulting Group/BCG). Although the various components of the digitalization process in enterprises have a different scope and depth, one can say that already many African enterprises follow a pro-active strategy of digital transformation. The African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) can also facilitate the development of so-called “Technology Challengers” (also a term introduced by BCG) in Africa with enterprises which are leading in specific technology fields being of relevance to Africa. These enterprises can have impact on issues which are determining the global competitiveness of African products and services. Technology Hubs and Technology Start-ups are of growing importance for Africa, although the concentration of them in a few African countries is not a positive trend for the many other African countries; their enterprise dynamics is negatively affected. But new developments show also that alternative forms of technology hubs and start-ups are emerging in Africa which may contribute to the dynamics of technology development. These alternative forms are not primarily profit-oriented, but are of collective interest; these are solidarity, cooperative, and social ventures. These enterprises are less hierarchical in organization and less controlled by private capital; they are less structured from the top and less organized through central public interventions. The innovative business actions are coming rather from the bottom and through local actors and decision-makers.

The large technology enterprises, the technology start-ups, and the technology hubs in Africa are supported by various excellence research institutions which are affiliated to universities and to private and public research institutions and agencies. The excellence research centres are focussed on key problems of social and economic development in Africa. In the context of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) these excellence centres can lead - according to their specialisation - to a network of scientific division of labour all over Africa, by giving impulses to established and new technology enterprises. The excellence research institutions and the technology enterprises will contribute in their environment to a more productive private sector and to a deepening of Africa’s integration process. The economic and the scientific division of labour will be supported all over the AfCFTA by new Science, Technology, and Innovation (STI) policies for the continent. The Strategic Science and Research Policy of the African Union (AU) is now based on the Science, Technology, and Innovation Strategy For Africa 2024 (STISA-2024). With STISA-2024 a frame was created to impact on six (6) major research priority fields which were selected as most relevant research priorities for Africa to advance STI. These six research priority fields reflect on the one side the relative strength of Africa’s research capacities and the abundance of productive factors in Africa, and on the other side the opportunities of Africa-wide new research initiatives a) for eliminating the many communication barriers of integration in Africa, especially through new infrastructure projects, b) for protecting the environment and the natural resources in Africa, especially by water management and new satellite navigation technologies, and c) for networking the plans, ideas and activities of economic and scientific actors in Africa, especially by introducing new STI policies.

The next volume of the African Development Perspectives Yearbook (Volume 23/2022) will consider in depth the issues of “Digital Transformation in Africa”. Business opportunities in Africa through digitization will be reviewed for countries, sectors and enterprises, and African start-ups will be analysed in their new roles for entrepreneurship development. Units on West Africa, Cameroon and South Africa will be presented in the volume with numerous essays. But there will also be individual essays to survey the theme of “Digital Transformation in Africa” in analytic essays. The book reviews and book notes section (a whole Unit of volume 23/2022) will give information on most recent publications in the field (see the link for the Call for Papers on volume 23/2022: http://www.iwim.uni-bremen.de/index.php?content=345&lng=de, and: https://www.karl-wohlmuth.de/african_development_perspectives_yearbook/).

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26.08.2021
Ein neuer Wissenschaftsblog von Karl Wohlmuth: „Globale Technologieentwicklung und Afrikas digitale und technologische Aufholprozesse“

Zugang zum Blog Weltneuvermessung (Internetversion): https://weltneuvermessung.wordpress.com/2021/06/08/globale-technologieentwicklung-und-afrikas-digitale-und-technologische-aufholprozesse/, und zur PDF: https://weltneuvermessung.files.wordpress.com/2021/06/weltneuvermessung-wohlmuth-globale-technologieentwicklung-und-afrika-5-2021.pdf

Kurztext zum Blog: „Afrika steht weltweit noch am Anfang der Vierten Industriellen Revolution, in der die digital gesteuerte Produktion mit Künstlicher Intelligenz verbunden wird. Gleichwohl besteht gerade heute für einige afrikanische Länder die historische Chance, im Rahmen eines „leapfrogging“ die technologische Kluft gegenüber den etablierten Industrieländern zu überspringen und mit lokalen Technologien den Entwicklungsrückstand des Kontinents zu verringern. Welche Länder hierbei die besten Aussichten haben und welche Anforderungen sich an den internationalen Technologietransfer jenseits der Entwicklungszusammenarbeit stellen, untersucht der Beitrag von Prof. Dr. Karl Wohlmuth von der Universität Bremen.“

Der Blog des Bremer Afrikaexperten Karl Wohlmuth mit dem Titel „Globale Technologieentwicklung und Afrikas digitale und technologische Aufholprozesse“ geht von den globalen Technologietrends aus, die sich für die nächsten Jahre abzeichnen. Insbesondere die Verknüpfung von technologischer und digitaler Entwicklung wird diskutiert. In einem weiteren Schritt wird darauf eingegangen, wie Afrika pro-aktiv reagieren kann. Die Entwicklung zur „Afrikanischen Kontinentalen Freihandelszone“ ist wohl von entscheidender Bedeutung, um die technologischen und digitalen Nachhol- und Aufholprozesse zu stützen. Bereits jetzt zeigen sich Anwendungsfelder für Technologien der Vierten Industriellen Revolution (4IR-Technologien) in mehreren afrikanischen Ländern. Neue Instrumente zur Messung der Veränderungen, wie der African Leapfrog Index (ALI), zeigen, dass die digitale Transformation in Afrika zügig voranschreitet, und auch die Fähigkeit zunimmt, globale Technologien kostengünstig zu absorbieren, obwohl diese Prozesse ungleichzeitig und ungleichmäßig erfolgen. In einem Ausblick wird von Professor Karl Wohlmuth auf die Chancen und auf die Herausforderungen für Afrika eingegangen.

In einer neuen Studie geht der Bremer Afrikaexperte ausführlich auf die Rolle afrikanischer Unternehmen und afrikanischer Startups bei den technologischen und digitalen Aufholprozessen ein (vgl. die Studie „Globale Technologieentwicklung und Afrikas digitale und technologische Aufholprozesse – Wie agieren die Unternehmen?“, veröffentlicht in Berichte aus dem Weltwirtschaftlichen Colloquium der Universität Bremen, Nr. 129, August 2021, 61 Seiten; Zugang: http://www.iwim.uni-bremen.de/blaue_reihe/, und: https://www.karl-wohlmuth.de/blaue_reihe/). Eine umfassende Abhandlung zum Thema der digitalen Transformation in Afrika ist in Vorbereitung als Band 23 (2022) des African Development Perspectives Yearbook mit dem Titel: “Business Opportunities, Start-ups and Digital Transformation in Africa” (Info und Zugang: http://www.iwim.uni-bremen.de/index.php?content=345&lng=de, und: https://www.karl-wohlmuth.de/african_development_perspectives_yearbook/).

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01.02.2021
Advising on African and Global Studies – Festschrift 30 Years African Development Perspectives Yearbook, Innovation Policies in Bremen, World Economy Transitions and COVID-19, Cooperation with the University of Bremen Archives, and Evaluation of Working Programmes, Manuscripts and International Study Programmes

Recent months were busy times for Economics Professor Karl Wohlmuth. He guided the project “Festschrift Anniversary of Thirty Years (1989-2019)  of the African Development Perspectives Yearbook”. The Festschrift was finalized as a first edition in November 2020, and the second edition appeared in January 2021. The University of Bremen has republished the Festschrift as a major document on its media platform. The number of contributors to the Festschrift was very high, and the response to make recommendations for a further quality increase was great. It was proposed to move with the Yearbook to an open access system; negotiations are now underway. A great number of suggestions came in to make the Yearbook a real platform for success stories and sustainable reforms in Africa. It was decided by the Research Group on African Development Perspectives Bremen to publish a Festschrift, as a physical celebration of the Thirty Years Anniversary was not possible because of COVID-19.

Professor Wohlmuth and the editors of volume 22 (2020/21) of the African Development Perspectives Yearbook have in the meantime finalized the new volume. It is now in the process of publication. The new volume has two Units with twelve chapters and a further Unit with book reviews and book notes. Professor Wohlmuth and the team of Unit Editors have introduced the content of all the three Units. The volume is quite relevant as the theme “Sustainable Development Goal Nine and African Development” touches issues of promoting industrialization, developing infrastructure, and building innovation capacity in Africa. Also, the Research Group on African Development Perspectives Bremen has released in December 2020 the new call for papers for volume 23 (2022) on “Business Opportunities, Start-ups and Digital Transformation in Africa”. A Unit  on “COVID-19 and repurposing industries in Africa” and Units with country cases  of digital transformation and digital entrepreneurship are envisaged. There is already great interest to become part of the new Yearbook project.

Professor Reuben A. Alabi from the Department of Agricultural Economics at Ambrose Alli University, Ekpoma, Edo State, Nigeria has finalized important research work for international and regional African organizations, and for the Yearbook in cooperation with Professor Wohlmuth. Also, a major research report by the two professors came out on “Waste Management Policies in Nigeria and Germany”, with a focus on the municipalities of Lagos and Bremen. Professor Alabi has also finalized a study on “Financial innovations and agricultural development in Nigeria”. The study is part of his research programme “Environment and Development Management Nigeria-Germany”. He will now take up again his duties as a full professor of agricultural economics at Ambrose Alli University in Ekpoma, Edo State, Nigeria. In the Festschrift “Thirty Years Anniversary of the African Development Perspectives Yearbook” he gave an account of the role the Yearbook has played for enhancing reforms in Africa. Professor Alabi will continue his work as co-editor of the African Development Perspectives Yearbook.

Professor Wohlmuth was active in evaluating applications for professorship, research manuscripts, and international study programmes. He was again appointed as a member of a promotions committee for professors (associate and full professors) at a university in Michigan, USA. He did reviews for development economics and environmental economics journals. He evaluated international study programmes in Tajikistan. This work was possible only in the form of virtual meetings, what limits considerably real evaluations. Tajikistan is reforming its study programmes also in the field of economics. The study programmes related to economics and business studies in Tajikistan intend to support also the research component, especially so in the direction of increasing the competitiveness of the Tadjik economy. It was found out during the meetings that more international cooperation of teachers and researchers and higher financial support for individual research programmes are quite necessary. While the leading staff persons of the  universities in Tajikistan are linked to the government offices and/or the traditional elites, the young teachers and researchers are mobile, motivated, mostly English-speaking, and interested to cooperate with universities in countries of the European Union and with universities in other geo-political regions (USA, China, Russia, India).

The Government of Bremen is on the move to develop a new “Innovation Strategy for the Country State of Bremen 2030” to replace the outdated Innovation Programme 2020 and the Cluster Strategy 2020. Professor Wohlmuth works on the issues of innovation and technology policy of Bremen since the 1980s when his institute produced a handbook “Bremen as a location for high technology industries”. In recent months, Professor Wohlmuth has contributed essays on new innovation policies for Bremen to support  in this way a new innovation strategy for Bremen. The COVID-19-crisis gave an additional push for reforms of innovation policies as many industries in Bremen are severely affected, because leading cluster industries (space and aircraft industries, automotive sector, logistics and transport industry, tourism, and others) have to overcome the crisis in the medium- to long-term. The main issue is to combine new cluster and innovation strategies with a strategy to navigate the industries out of the COVID-19-crisis. The Professor has emphasized five elements of an action programme for Bremen (institutional reform component; strengthening the regional innovation system; value-added-focussed and employment-oriented component; further developing the health, medical support, and care sector; and supporting digitalization).

Professor Karl Wohlmuth has accepted the offer of the University of Bremen Archives (Universitätsarchiv) to transmit a considerable part of his scientific research and teaching fundus, with materials classified on eight categories (first, Teaching  Projects since 1971; second, Integrated Introductory Study Programmes in the 1970s; third, Research and Consulting Activities on Sudan 1978-2021; fourth, Researches on African Development since the 1970s, Consulting on Africa since the 1980s, and Editing/Publishing the African Development Perspectives Yearbook since 1989; fifth, Shaping the development of the Faculty of Economics and Business Studies since 1971; sixth, Organising the research, teaching, advisory, and training activities as the Director of the World Economy Research Group since the 1970s and of the IWIM/Institute for World Economics and International Management since 1987; seventh, Developing the international cooperation projects since 1971 for the University of Bremen, for the Faculty of Economics and Business Studies, and for IWIM; and eighth, Documenting the personal development and the career of Karl Wohlmuth since the 1960s). Professor Wohlmuth celebrates in September 2021 50 years as professor of comparative economic systems at the University of Bremen, as he moved to the new university in September 1971. He came from the Institute for the Theory of Economic Policy at the FU of Berlin after work periods in Vienna and in Linz, Austria. He was part of a small group of professors who were in the first weeks of the new university appointed in meetings of the whole Senate of the Country State of Bremen, while months later the calls to Bremen and the appointments of professors were done by the Senator of Education and Science. An audio file of an interview with Professor Karl Wohlmuth about his life, his scientific work, and his experiences at the University of Bremen is also available in the University of Bremen Archives.

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31.01.2021
Thirty Years (1989 - 2019) of the African Development Perspectives Yearbook – Impacts on Policy Reforms in Africa – A second edition of the “Festschrift” is now available.
A second edition of the “Festschrift” was published recently by the Research Group on African Development Perspectives Bremen at the occasion of the 30 years anniversary of the Yearbook. The title of the Festschrift is “Thirty Years (1989 - 2019) of the African Development Perspectives Yearbook – Impacts on Policy Reforms in Africa”. It was compiled by Professor Karl Wohlmuth, University of Bremen, Bremen, Germany, Director of the Research Group and Chief Editor of the Yearbook since 1989 (see the PDF under Wohlmuth-Festschrift Thirty Years). While the first edition appeared in November 2020, the second edition is from January 2021. The Festschrift is now also published by the Library of the University of Bremen (link: https://doi.org/10.26092/elib/449).
 
The Festschrift contains various statements and chapters to celebrate the work over 30 years. In Foreword and Acknowledgements by Professor Dr. Karl Wohlmuth the history of the Yearbook project is presented. The Statements by the University of Bremen for the Press (in English and German) inform about the character of the annual publication on Africa and about the ambitions for the future work of the Research Group.
 
In Chapter 1: How did It Start: The Research Group on African Development Perspectives Bremen and the Formative Years of the Yearbook, there is a description of the work of the Research Group on African Development Perspectives Bremen and an essay by the co- founder of the Yearbook project Professor Dr. Robert Kappel, Professor at Leipzig University, Leipzig, Germany, and former president of GIGA, Hamburg, Germany about “The Formative Years of the African Development Perspectives Yearbook”.
 
In Chapter 2: What were the Topics: Thirty Years (1989 - 2019) of Africa’s Development and the African Development Perspectives Yearbook, there is for all volumes a short description of the Selected Theme, the Content of the Volume, the Highlights of the Volume, the Cover of the Book, and information about the Units of the Volume.
 
In Chapter 3: Who Did Cooperate and Why: The Statements of Supporters, Editors, Contributors, Reviewers, there is a great number of statements by cooperants to give an account of their affiliation with the Yearbook and with the Research Group, specifically about the type, the years, and the forms of cooperation, the main messages for and the impressions about the Yearbook, and the Proposals for the Future of the Yearbook.
 
In Chapter 4: How to prepare for the Future: Proposals for important Themes, changes of Format, and the adaptation of the Working Procedures we find a Statement by the Managing Editor of the African Development Perspectives Yearbook, Professor Dr. Tobias Knedlik, University of the Applied Sciences Fulda, and Research Professor IWH Halle, Germany, and a Statement by the Book Reviews and Book Notes Editor of the African Development Perspectives Yearbook, Professor Dr. Samia Satti Osman Mohamed Nour, Full Professor at the University of Khartoum, Sudan and member of numerous international research  and advisory institutions. Also, the Key Pillars of the African Development Perspectives Yearbook are considered to answer the question: What should be preserved? Then, there is a presentation about The Future of the African Development Perspectives Yearbook: What should be changed? 
 
Finally, the Festschrift contains information about accessing all the volumes and how to contact the editorial group; this is found under the title: The African Development Perspectives Yearbook: Information to access the volumes. This part has also relevant information about Websites, Contact, Wikipedia entry about the Yearbook, and the Imprint.
 
The Research Group on African Development Perspectives Bremen is presenting soon the volume 22 for 2020/2021 about “SDG 9 and Africa” (see the entry on the homepage) and has submitted an International Call for Papers for Volume 23 (2022) on the theme “Business Opportunities, Start-ups and Digital Transformation in Africa” (see the entry on the homepage). There is already great interest in reading volume 22 (2020/2021) and to become part of the new Yearbook project for volume 23/2022 (see the entry on the homepage: https://www.karl-wohlmuth.de/african_development_perspectives_yearbook/). The International Call for Papers for volume 23 (2022) is available as a PDF: International Call for Papers Volume 23).
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31.01.2021
“Towards A New Vision For Inclusive Development in Sudan” – First Conference of the Sudan Research Group (SRG) in November 2019 after the Sudanese Revolution in Khartoum



The Sudan Research Group (SRG) has now released its conference report
on the first conference held in Khartoum, Sudan which took place some months after the Sudanese Revolution and the instalment of the Transitional Government. The title of the report is “Towards Sustainable Inclusive Development in Sudan“. The participants were divided into eight clusters to discuss 31 papers around the Conference’s main themes: 1- Macroeconomic Management for Inclusive Development; 2- Bringing the Productive Sectors back in Sudan; 3- Governance and Institutions; 4- Management of Natural Resources; 5- Sustainable Infra-Structure; 6- Social Policy and Public Service Delivery; 7- The Role of the Private Sector; and 8- Gender. The Report was published in 2020 and contains Recommendations on Macroeconomic Issues, Reviving the Productive Sectors, Governance and Institutions, The  Management of Natural Resources, Sustainable Infrastructure, Social Policy and Public Service Delivery, and the Private Sector. There are specific recommendations to the Transitional Government, to the Ministry of Finance and to other competent ministries, to International Donors, and to Civil Society Organizations. The full report contains information about all the clusters of the conference.

The Sudan Research Group (SRG) writes about its mandate: “The Sudan Research Group is a UK-based voluntary organization. It was formed in 2003 by a group of academics and researchers who felt a pressing need for a specialized network that brings together multidisciplinary academics, researchers, activists and policy makers in a forum devoted to in-depth discussions of the key and pressing issues that face the country. Dedicated to impact, it aims to produce and promote research and scholarship that may inform home-grown policies to address the country’s urgent economic, political, and social needs.” And the SRG reports about the conferences: “The main conferences and events organized by the Group so far include “Economic Challenges in Post-conflict Sudan” (2004), “Institutional and Governance Requirements for the Future Development of Sudan” ( 2005 ), “Education and Capacity Building” (2006), “Assessing the Peace-building in Darfur”, (2008), “General Education Crisis in Sudan” (with an Open Themes Group), (2016), Training in Communication for Sudanese NGOs” (2019), and a series of Webinars.” Then, “Towards Sustainable Inclusive Development in Sudan” (2019) was the first conference that SRG was able to convene in Sudan after the Sudanese Revolution which started in December 2018. It was convened for June 2019, but was then postponed to November 2019 (SRG 5TH Meeting Tentative Agenda).

Contact Information about SRG: Email address: Info@Sudanresearchgroup.org; Website: www.sudanresearchgroup.org

About the Report on the SRG Conference November 2019 in Khartoum, Sudan: “The Sudan Research Group (SRG) is pleased to introduce a summary of the proceedings of its Fifth Conference, with the title “Towards Sustainable Inclusive Development in Sudan”. Held only three months after the formation of the Transitional Government that followed the end of three decades of dictatorship, the conference sought to provide a neutral space for open discussions that help in shaping the agenda for change. More than 160 researchers, policy makers, private sector and civil society participants engaged in three days of constructive - and sometimes heated debate - about immediate reform programs and long -term development policies. This report provides a brief summary of the discussions on the key themes of the conference and its substantive findings. It should be noted that the messages and ideas summarized are not intended to indicate a consensus and they do not necessarily reflect the opinion of the SRG”. The report is available for download as a PDF under: Final SRG 5th Conf. 2019. Professor Karl Wohlmuth had the privilege to be invited to the conference as a speaker for the cluster Infrastructure. Professor Wohlmuth follows the studies and projects of the SRG carefully.

Dr. Gamal Al-Tayib from UNECA in Addis Ababa is one of the founders of the SRG.

Another important development about Sudan as two thinktanks are cooperating: SRG is joined by SWEA in development work

In the new Sudan independent NGOs can be founded and have space for action. SWEA (see below) is now ready to mobilise the women economists. There are links between SRG and SWEA. SERG in Bremen is cooperating with these groups.

Sudanese Women Economists Association (SWEA): Empowering the Women in the Peripheries through Capacity Building Projects

Women economists work together for a peaceful and prospering Sudan. Sawsan Musa Adam Abdul-Jalil from the Ministry of Finance in Khartoum, Sudan is a co-founder of the Sudanese Women Economists Association (SWEA). SWEA was founded in June 2020. SWEA is collaborating with the Sudan Research Group (SRG) in a capacity building project. The first (and so far the only) project was an online training on a research proposal writing for the students of Nayala, El Fahser, Gedaref and Kassala, but much more is in the pipeline. Sawsan Musa Adam Abdul-Jalil from the Ministry of Finance in Khartoum, Sudan is working now with the Aid Coordination Unit of the Ministry to restructure their strategy. We cooperate from the SERG in Bremen with SRG and SWEA to learn more about the reforms ongoing in Sudan and to support the process of change in the country. It is intended to cooperate on the new Yearbook project of the Research Group on African Development Perspectives Bremen (see the International Call for Papers Volume 23).

    

 
The Sudanese Women Economists Association (SWEA) is becoming an important partner for democratic development, inclusive growth, and economic change in Sudan.

Source: Website SWEA

 

About the Mandate of SWEA:

“The Sudanese Women Economists Association (SWEA) was founded in June 2020, on the ground of redeeming the prevalent gap of women economists participation in the policy and academic spheres in Sudan. Fuelled by the enthusiasm of its founders and members, SWEA aims at building capacities, encouraging and amplifying the contribution of women economists, and of young women pursuing degrees in economics. SWEA strives to achieve this by providing a platform to convene Sudanese women economists, offering networking opportunities and enriching the economic research space by the contributions from its members.”

The Vision of SWEA:

“SWEA’s vision is to advance Sudanese women economists’ participation in academic and public policy spheres in Sudan. Our aim is to promote solidarity between Sudanese women economists across generations, as a key step to build capacity of young women in economics and to amplify the voices of Sudanese women in economic research and practice.”

Contact:
The website of SWEA is: https://sweasd.org.

 Source: Website SWEA

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31.01.2021
New Publications on Sudan’s Regional Development: Food Security and Agricultural Development in Kassala State, Sudan

Professor Samia Nour from the University of Khartoum, Sudan has published (in cooperation with Dr. Eltayeb Mohamedain) a working paper and two policy briefs on Food Security and Agricultural Development in Kassala State, Sudan. These are publications of the CMI (Chr. Michelsen Institute). The CMI Sudan Working paper Number 1 (21 July 2020) and the two CMI Policy Briefs (21 July 2020) are of interest as the focus is on research done by regional universities and for advice to policymakers in peripheral regions in Sudan. The two policy briefs are based on the findings in the CMI Sudan working paper number 1 (21 July 2020) that analyses agricultural development and food security with the use of survey data from Kassala State. This research is conducted as part of the Agriculture and Food Security cluster in the Assisting Regional Universities in Sudan (ARUS) programme. The ARUS programme is a collaboration between CMI, the University of Khartoum, Ahfad University for Women, the University of Bergen, and several regional universities in Sudan. The programme is funded by the Norwegian Embassy in Khartoum. The importance of these studies is that regional universities in Sudan are participating, and that key issues of peripheral areas like food security and agricultural development are more deeply researched.

Professor Samia Nour is now also Book Reviews/Book Notes Editor of the African Development Perspectives Yearbook. She has advised the editors of volumes 20 (2018) and 21 (2019) and is Unit editor and Volume Editor for volume 22 (2020/21). She is also collaborating with various international research organisations. She has recently published in the SERG discussion papers of IWIM on Sudan’s revolution (see Number 44 of the SERG discussion papers with the title: “Overview of the Sudan Uprising”: http://www.iwim.uni-bremen.de/sudan_economy_research_group/).

Access to these three CMI publications (see links below) which are co-authored by Professor Samia Nour:

CMI Sudan Working Paper Number 1: “Food Security and Agricultural Development in Sudan: The case of Kassala State”, CMI Sudan Working Paper Number 1, CMI (Chr. Michelsen Institute), Bergen, Norway, 21 July 2020, pp. 1-113. Link: Food Security and Agricultural Development in Sudan: The case of Kassala State

See the Abstract (shortened) below.

Sudan CMI Policy Brief Number 3: “Food Insecurity in Sudan as seen from Kassala State ”, Sudan CMI Policy Brief Number 3, CMI (Chr. Michelsen Institute), Bergen, Norway, 21 July 2020, pp. 1-4. Link: Food Insecurity in Sudan as seen from Kassala State

“This policy brief discusses the incidence of food insecurity, explores families’ survival strategies, and recommends measures that may combat food insecurity.”

Sudan CMI Policy Brief 4: “Agricultural development and food Security in Sudan as seen from Kassala State”, Sudan CMI Policy Brief Number 4, CMI (Chr. Michelsen Institute), Bergen, Norway, 21 July 2020, pp. 1-4. Link: Agricultural development and food Security in Sudan as seen from Kassala State

“This policy brief uses data from Kassala State to assess the close link between agricultural development and food security, and investigates factors and policies that can strengthen agricultural development, thereby increasing food security in Sudan.”

Abstract (shortened) of Sudan Working Paper 1, 21 July 2020

Food Security and Agricultural Development in Sudan: The case of Kassala State,

by Prof. Dr. Samia Mohamed Nour and Dr. Eltayeb Mohamedain, Bergen: Chr. Michelsen Institute (Sudan Working Paper 2020:1)

This research discusses the relationship between agricultural development and food security, the determinants of the supply of food and of the demand for food, and the determinants of food insecurity in Kassala State. In so doing, it provides a significant contribution to the current literature. Used are new primary data from a Food Security Household Survey which was conducted in Kassala State (2019). It was found that the majority of households are food insecure (77%), out of which 32.9% of the households are severely food insecure, while fewer households are fully food secure (23%). There is a large variation in households' food insecurity between localities, with rural Kassala having most of the food insecure households. This may be explained by the variation in monthly income between localities.

Three hypotheses are examined. A first hypothesis is verified that the most significant determinants of production of food are the size of agricultural land, the available livestock, and the irrigation systems. There is support for the second hypothesis that the family's own production of food and the household income have positive effects on food consumption. It is found that the significant determinants of the production of sorghum (the main staple food) are the size of agricultural land and the available livestock, and that the significant determinants of consumption of sorghum are the family's own production of sorghum, the household income, and the family size. For small farmers, their own consumption of sorghum is to a larger extent determined by their own production of sorghum. Therefore, enhancing production of sorghum among smallholders would contribute to enhancing consumption of sorghum and hence supporting food security. The third hypothesis is verified that better working conditions of the farmers are crucial for family own production of food and are then supporting food security; the probabilities of households being food secure increase with better working conditions for higher family own production .

Investigating the gender gap related to food production and food security has led to the results that male-headed households produce more food and are more food secure than female-headed households. Some reasons for this observation are analyzed. Also, it was found out that agricultural production is impeded by the lack of agricultural land, the cultivation of only few crops, an insufficient irrigation system, and shortages of agricultural services, which are mainly related to the provision of agricultural technology. Therefore, the major policy implication is that measures aimed at increasing household incomes and enhancing family own production of food are important for eliminating food insecurity. Recommended are therefore policies that may increase household incomes and may enhance smallholders' own production of food. Relevant policy instruments may be increases of agricultural land ownership, increases of the size of cultivated land for smallholders, more diversification of agricultural food crops, an improvement of irrigation systems, measures for enhancing female participation in agricultural activities and food security, steps towards improvement of agricultural services, mainly related to the adoption of technology, improving access to clean drinking water and proper sanitation systems, and, in general terms, improved infrastructure which may help in access to food, to inputs, and to production requirements.

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31.01.2021
“Sustainable Development Goal Nine and African Development – Challenges and Opportunities”: A forthcoming volume of the African Development Perspectives Yearbook

The African Development Perspectives Yearbook, Volume 22(2020/2021) with the title “Sustainable Development Goal Nine and African Development – Challenges and Opportunities” is now finalized by the publisher. The Volume 22 (2020/2021) focusses on the relevance of Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 9 (“Build resilient infrastructure, promote inclusive and sustainable industrialization, and foster innovation") for Africa’s development. In three Units key issues in the context of SDG 9 and its eight targets and twelve indicators are analysed at the continental level and in country case studies.

Unit 1 presents in four essays the African continental perspectives and achievements - on developing productive capacities towards sustainable industrialization, supporting frugal innovations for bottom-of-the pyramid households, reorganising commodity-based industrialization through the African Continental Free Trade Agreement, and making foreign direct investment work for inclusive growth and sustainable industrialisation.

Unit 2 presents six essays which are focussing on aspects of the eight targets of SDG 9. Two essays discuss perspectives of agro-industrial development and of financial innovations for Sudan and Nigeria; two essays consider the future of renewable energy projects in urban and rural areas of Nigeria and Cameroon; and two further essays analyse the importance of the roads system in Sudan for structural transformation and the role of sustainable mining activities in support of social infrastructure for Zimbabwe and South Africa.

Unit 3 presents book reviews and book notes in the context of SDG 9, classified around 11 categories. Reviewed are publications on SDG 9 and interlinkages with other SDGs, global and regional reports of relevance for Africa and/or coming from Africa, and new books on African Studies.

Volume 22 of the African Development Perspectives Yearbook is the first comprehensive publication on the relevance of SDG 9 for African development. See the focus on SDG 9 in the United Nations system: https://www.un.org/development/desa/disabilities/envision2030-goal9.html, by UNDP: https://www.undp.org/content/undp/en/home/sustainable-development-goals/goal-9-industry-innovation-and-infrastructure.html, by the UN Office for Outer Space Affairs: https://www.unoosa.org/oosa/en/ourwork/space4sdgs/sdg9.html, and by The Global Goals initiative: https://www.globalgoals.org/9-industry-innovation-and-infrastructure. Also in and for Africa SDG 9 is intensively researched now by UNIDO: https://www.unido.org/who-we-are/unido-and-sdgs/africa-and-sdg-9; by UNDP: https://www.africa.undp.org/content/rba/en/home/sustainable-development-goals/goal-9-industry-innovation-and-infrastructure.html; by the SDG Philanthropy Platform: https://www.sdgphilanthropy.org/SDG-9-in-Africa-by-2030; and by the Sustainable Development Goals Center for Africa and the Sustainable Development Solutions Network:  https://s3.amazonaws.com/sustainabledevelopment.report/2020/2020_africa_index_and_dashboards.pdf. The new study by the Research Group on African Development Perspectives Bremen is presenting in Volume 22 (2020/2021) a collection of analytic essays and country case studies.

In the meantime, a Festschrift was published at the occasion of the 30 years anniversary of the African Development Perspectives Yearbook (1989-2019). A second edition was just released (see: Wohlmuth-Festschrift Thirty Years). It contains information about the formative years of the project, a description of the volumes over the thirty years by themes, messages and highlights, and comments and statements by contributors, supporters, and editors. Also, the new International Call for Papers for volume 23 (2022) was released some weeks ago (see: International Call for Papers Volume 23). Over the years, the African Development Perspectives Yearbook became the leading annual English-language publication on Africa in Germany.

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30.01.2021
“Business Opportunities, Start-ups and Digital Transformation”: International Call for Papers, African Development Perspectives Yearbook, Volume 23 (2022)

Invited are contributions for Volume 23 (2022) of the African Development Perspectives Yearbook with the title “Business Opportunities, Start-ups and Digital Transformation in Africa” (International Call for Papers Volume 23, 2022). The contributions should be evidence-based and policy-oriented. High academic standards are requested and will be reviewed by referees. Non-technical papers with deep analysis, which are readable by practitioners in development cooperation and by media people, have a high priority in the selection process. The analytical concept of the proposed contribution and the methodological framework of analysis should be outlined in the Abstract which is submitted to the Editors.

The theme for volume 23 (2022) on “Business Opportunities, Start-ups and Digital Transformation in Africa” is related to the ongoing global digital transformation, with impacts on productive sectors and the society also in Africa. African countries are differently advancing in the process of digital transformation, and some countries are even leading in this process by presenting digital solutions to current problems as we can see now in the COVID-19 crisis. The COVID-19 crisis reveals that health systems, education systems, government structures, financial services, and manufacturing processes are impacted by the digital transformation. Digital platforms give access to medical innovations, give information about hygiene advice, and provide for local availability of health protection utensils so that those living in remote rural areas and in semi-urban areas can also be reached. Those who are working in informal sector occupations get also access to digital media. In manufacturing sectors, we see a process of repurposing of industries towards basic goods for protecting people from COVID-19. We also encourage contributions along these lines.

The volume 23 (2022) of the African Development Perspectives Yearbook will cover three main issues:

First, the new business opportunities created by the digital transformation will be reviewed. Consumers, producers, traders, and entrepreneurs benefit from the new business opportunities. New products, new services, new forms of cooperation, and new supply chains emerge.

Second, the digital transformation increases the number of start-ups and venture capital funds in Africa. All types of start-ups are growing rapidly in Africa, and digital entrepreneurship is advancing not only in technology hubs but in all areas where Internet access is given. The many emerging start-ups (in all productive sectors and in all branches of digital transformation) and finance institutions (from venture capital funds to impact, innovation and technology funds) are important for employment creation, structural transformation, poverty reduction, and the connection to local, regional and global markets.

Third, there are longer-term implications of the digital transformation for the productive sectors, mainly for manufacturing sectors and for agribusiness. But there are also strong impacts on services and administration sub-sectors.

It is an intention to publish in volume 23 country-specific, company-specific and sector-specific digital transformation cases, company success stories, but also analytic essays on the perspectives of the “fourth industrial revolution” for Africa and on the impacts of “globalization 4.0” on Africa. It is also of great interest to see how informal sectors can become part of the core economy in Africa through the digital transformation. COVID-19 is affecting the pace of the digital transformation in Africa, and this process needs to be documented.

The Book Reviews/Book Notes Editor (Professor Samia Nour, University of Khartoum) invites authors, research institutes and publishers to send books, discussion papers, documents, and journals for review. The material should be related to the theme of volume 23 (2022).

To get an overview of the African Development Perspectives Yearbook project please look at the links: http://www.iwim.uni-bremen.de/africa/africanyearbook.htm, and: https://www.karl-wohlmuth.de/african_development_perspectives_yearbook/.

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