Democratic Governance in Africa: Current Threats, Challenges, and Opportunities


Democratic Governance in Africa: Current Threats, Challenges, and Opportunities Of 54 countries in the African continent, 21 countries experienced a leadership change within the last 5 years while 18 countries continued to be led by the same leader for more than a decade (Brookings, 2021). This landscape on the African continent lends a different layer to ASPA’s overarching conference theme titled, “Democracy under Threat,” as its orientation and approach is from an assumed democratic backdrop with aims to prevent slippage in upholding democratic ideals. This is not always a given when studying how government works in Africa. It is more complicated and correspondingly varied due to the diverse political-administrative arrangements and their institutional history. Past scholarship has highlighted unique the institutional development of the continent (Herbst, 2000; Kabwegyere, 1995) that is contrary to European states (Spruyt, 1994; Tilly, 1990). The importance of the varied contextualized institutional development paths becoming more relevant to PA scholarship (Dasandi & Esteve, 2017; Levy, 2014).

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