While many factors can be adduced as causative elements for this dismal level of development, a critical and fundamental question points to the extent to which respective national governments are able to drive inclusive development. This conundrum arises from the faulty foundation of the colonial state, its extractive and exploitative nature, excessive integration into the core of the global capitalist system, and the continuity of these features in the form of coloniality of being, power and knowledge in contemporary times.
Although the imperialists had bifurcated Africa to serve their own national and geopolitical interests at the Berlin Conference of 1884/1885, postcolonial leaders chose to maintain what scholars have referred to as the bondage of boundaries or northern problems. Despite many attempts to overcome the limitations imposed by these borders or development across the continent through integration, most African countries remain vastly inaccessible to citizens of other African countries due to the continuity of colonial policies of migration, rigid maintenance of artificial borders, politics of difference and lack of understanding of the imperative of forging a continental governance and institutional architectures that can facilitate the maximisation of resources and leveraging of Africa’s position at the global level. According to the African Development Bank (AfDB), Africans only have visa free access to 55 per cent of other African countries. This makes Africa the most restrictive continent to Africans in the world.
Against this background and in this panel, we invite papers that interrogate these themes as well as topics including, but not limited to:
How is the construction of a Pan-African identity possible in terms of the reformulation of sociocultural, economic and political expressions and interactions that existed in precolonial times?
Is a Pan-African identity expressed through inter alia, African self-consciousness, a necessary precondition for Africa to unleash its development potentials?
What is inclusive development in an African context? What are the possibilities and challenges of inclusive development in Africa?
Is the decolonisation of knowledge in Africa necessary for development? Is the decolonisation of knowledge an essential element in the construction of an African identity?
Is the synchronisation of governance institutions at continental level, and harmonisations of socioeconomic policies possible? What are the challenges and opportunities? What are the prospects?
What are the impacts of the physical borders in the inclusive development in Africa? Are there any possibilities for a borderless Africa, in which the citizens of the continent would harness freedom of movement to engage in productive activities, in the interest of Africa? How could a borderless Africa promote inclusive development?
How could a Pan African identity articulate a development trajectory for Africa, which enables the continent to compete at the global level as an equal partner?
Paper abstracts should be sent to soloruntoba09[at]gmail.com or soloruntoba[at]gmail.com by March 14, 2017.