The Project

Our Vision

Since the Year of Africa in 1960, African states have been grappling with domestic efforts to promote an independent vision of development while managing the effects of politico-economic interventions such as colonial and foreign corporate interests, economic reconstruction, foreign aid and structural adjustment.

Compounding these upheavals were various legal responses—such as aid conditional on legal and financial policy reform or rule of law initiatives— that failed to alleviate the deleterious effects. as evidenced by unsuccessful conditionalities, law reform interventions, and rule of law initiatives. Today, legal regimes across the continent are at a critical juncture as states seek to respond to mounting development challenges spurred by population growth, globalization, gross inequality, suppression of human rights, the climate emergency, and efforts to recover from the COVID-19 pandemic.

Using the African Union’s Agenda 2063 as a lens into some of the long-standing development challenges across the continent, this project will bring together scholars, practitioners, and policymakers from around the world to re-imagine the socio-legal foundations of development in Africa.