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Prospects for Africa's 26 Fragile Countries

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Tuesday, October 1, 2013
Abstract in English: 
This policy paper provides an overview of a longer monograph that provides long-term forecasts of fragility in Africa. Using the International Futures system (IFs) data-analysis and forecasting tool, the paper provides a long-term forecast of 26 fragile African countries. They are chosen on the basis of comparative lists of fragile countries based on indicators that reflect the fragility syndrome. In conducting the forecast, the authors argue that fragility should be understood as a syndrome, or set of related conditions, that operates in a system that is mutually reinforcing.
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12
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Assessing long-term state fragility in Africa: Prospects for 26 'more fragile' countries

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Publication date: 
Saturday, November 30, 2013
Abstract in English: 
Despite sterling growth in some countries, a number of African countries are caught in a vicious cycle of violence, chronic poverty, inequality and exclusion. These ‘more fragile’ states are on a slow trajectory to long-term peace and development. Using the International Futures system (IFs) data analysis and forecasting tool, the monograph provides a long-term forecast of 26 fragile African countries. The forecasts suggest that in the long-term ten countries on the continent will continue to remain fragile into the mid-21st century. Others, however, have a good chance of embarking on a pathway from fragility to middle-income conditions by 2030 or possibly 2050. The monograph concludes with a list of recommendations.
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124
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South African Futures 2030: How Bafana Bafana made Mandela Magic

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Friday, February 14, 2014
Abstract in English: 
This paper presents three scenarios for South Africa up to 2030: ‘Bafana Bafana’, ‘A Nation Divided’ and ‘Mandela Magic’. The nation’s current development pathway, called ‘Bafana Bafana’ is the well-known story of a perennial underachiever, always playing in the second league when the potential for international championship success and flashes of brilliance are evident for all to see.‘Mandela Magic’, on the other hand, is the story of a country with a clear economic and developmental vision, which it pursues across all sectors of society. Competition is stiff and the barriers to success are high. The scenario of ‘A Nation Divided’ reflects a South Africa that steadily gathers speed downhill as factional politics and policy zigzagging open the door to populist policies. The impact of the policy and leadership choices that South Africans will make in the years ahead, explored in this paper, is significant. The South African economy could grow 23 per cent larger in ‘Mandela Magic’ compared with its current growth path (‘Bafana Bafana’). The paper concludes with seven strategic interventions required to set South Africa on the most prosperous 'Mandela Magic' pathway.
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36
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The 2014 South African Defence Review: Rebuilding after years of abuse, neglect and decay

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Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Wednesday, June 25, 2014
Abstract in English: 
After three tortuous years, cabinet approved the Defence Review in March 2014. The review is a huge improvement on the previous public document. Its 15 chapters include considerable background material that may not all have been necessary – but given the state of the SANDF, this is as much a manual to fix the department as it is a path towards the future. The result is a mixture of matters that relate to internal administration, policy, strategy, military doctrine, discipline and human resources. Although it does not set out alternative force design options, the review does present the costs of its preferred option. This policy brief interprets a number of the review’s key conclusions and presents associated policy considerations, with a focus on the financial affordability of the expenditure targets.
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8
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Reducing poverty in Africa Realistic targets for the post-2015 MDGs and Agenda 2063

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Publication date: 
Monday, August 25, 2014
Abstract in English: 
The eradication of extreme poverty is a key component of the post-2015 MDG process and the African Union’s Agenda 2063. This paper uses the International Futures forecasting system to explore this goal and finds that many African states are unlikely to make this target by 2030. In addition to the use of country-level targets, this paper argues in favour of a goal that would see Africa as a whole reducing extreme poverty to below 20% by 2030 (15% using 2011 purchasing power parity), and to below 3% by 2063.
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28
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Africa's conflict burden in a global context

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Wednesday, October 22, 2014
Abstract in English: 
This paper gives a snapshot of Africa’s conflict burden within a global context based on various prominent data providers. The analysis finds that armed conflict in Africa follows the general global pattern of declining levels if measured in relation to population size and population growth. The impact of the Cold War temporarily disrupted this pattern, leading to higher levels of armed violence than could be expected during the 1970s and 1980s. Recent trends point to an increase in armed violence from around 2010, potentially reversing the gains made immediately after the fall of the Berlin Wall. Different to other regions, Africa shows a high level of so-called ‘non-state conflict’: conflict between various armed groups and factions that are fighting one another, and not the government. This is almost certainly due to weak and unconsolidated governance in many African countries. The Middle East, not Africa, is the region with the fastest growth in terrorism.
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20
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Africa's current and future stability

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Wednesday, November 19, 2014
Abstract in English: 
This paper first presents a summary of recent conflict trends in Africa, largely drawing on data from the Armed Conflict Location and Event Data Project. Then, to provide a picture of the potential future impact of changes in Africa’s development and security prospects up to 2063 (a timeline that ties in with the African Union’s Agenda 2063 initiative), the paper models the implications of three alternative futures for Africa. These are a 'Base Case’ scenario (the current trajectory), an "African Renaissance" scenario (a best-case scenario) and a ‘Politics of the Belly’ scenario (in which the trends analysed take a negative course).
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24
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Power and influence in Africa: Algeria, Egypt, Ethiopia, Nigeria and South Africa

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Publication date: 
Tuesday, March 24, 2015
Abstract in English: 
This paper explores the changing power capabilities of Algeria, Egypt, Ethiopia, Nigeria, and South Africa (the ‘Big Five’) over the next 25 years. Of these countries, Ethiopia and Nigeria are forecast to increase their power capabilities, whereas Algeria, Egypt and South Africa are expected to stagnate or decline. Of the Big Five, two currently punch above their weight – one that is rising, Ethiopia, and another whose growth is stagnant, South Africa. If Nigeria were able to take the necessary steps that would see far-reaching changes to the governance issues and social challenges that currently beset the country, it could become Africa’s lone superpower.
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28
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South African Futures 2035: can Bafana Bafana still score?

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Publication date: 
Tuesday, August 11, 2015
Abstract in English: 
Using updated population forecasts, this paper presents alternative growth scenarios for South Africa up to 2035, and their implications for employment, politics and poverty. ‘Bafana Bafana Redux’ is the expected current trajectory. This scenario takes into account the impact of policy incoherence and the electricity supply crisis on South Africa’s long-term prospects. With concerted effort and much greater focus, an improved future, dubbed 'Mandela Magic Lite’, is possible – but neither scenario has a significant impact on structural unemployment. South Africa will only achieve long-term stability and prosperity with a leadership committed to inclusive political and economic practices.
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32
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Violent Islamist extremism and terror in Africa

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Thursday, October 1, 2015
Abstract in English: 
This paper presents an overview of large-scale violence by Islamist extremists in key African countries. The paper builds on previous publications of the Institute for Security Studies on the nexus between development and conflict trends, and it seeks to provide an overview of the evolution of the associated terrorism through quantitative and contextual analysis using various large datasets. The focus is on the development and links among countries experiencing the worst of this phenomenon, especially Algeria, Egypt, Tunisia, Libya, Mali, Nigeria and Somalia, as well as the impact of events in the Middle East on these African countries.
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32
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