[PAST EVENT] "Africa Rising" and the "Rising Powers" Diversifying Dependency

May 20, 2014
3pm - 5pm
Blow Memorial Hall, Board of Visitors Room
262 Richmond Rd
Williamsburg, VA 23185Map this location
Africa is currently said to be rising, turning a definitive page in its history. Numerous reports have rapidly constructed a narrative of an inextricable upward trajectory.

Though all evidence suggests that an upsurge in economic growth has been built on the back of a commodity super-cycle, the Africa Rising discourse prefers to insist that qualitative endogenous dynamics have been responsible. Equally, the role of the rising powers" has been cited as playing an important role in diversifying Africa's international relations, granting Africa new possibilities.

Emblematized by the BRICS, a great deal of excitement has been generated to suggest that Africa is on the up and that a changing global order will facilitate this. However, Africa has still to go through any structural transformation and there is strong evidence to suggest a scenario of de-industrialization and jobless growth is occurring. Far from a milieu where Africa may turn a radically new page in its developmental trajectory, the continent is ever more being pushed into the resource corner, deepening its structural dependency.

Ian Taylor is Professor of International Relations and African Politics at St Andrews and Chair Professor at the School of International Studies, Renmin University of China. He is also Professor Extraordinary in Political Science at the University of Stellenbosch, South Africa, an Honorary Professor at the Institute of African Studies, China, and Visiting Scholar at Mbarara University of Science and Technology, Uganda. Focusing largely on Africa he has authored eight academic books, edited another eight and published more than 60 peer-reviewed scholarly articles, some 60 chapters in books and numerous working papers, reports, op-eds etc. He holds a D.Phil. from the University of Stellenbosch and an M.Phil. from the University of Hong Kong. Prior to joining St Andrews, he taught African Politics for four years at the University of Botswana. He has conducted research in and/or visited 38 African countries.