Internal wars and despots shape the media image of the African continent. However, countries such as Angola and Botswana have developed into emerging economies. The region has recently become more assertive – in part a result of new cooperations with countries like China, which has made the region competitive with Europeans countries.
The GIGA Institute of African Affairs (IAA) has been researching political and economic developments on the continent since 1963, primarily focusing on the areas south of the Sahara. The thematic core of the institute’s research consists of institutional structures (such as political parties, electoral systems and constitutional courts), conflicts over resources and religious domination, foreign investment and its consequences, and African leading powers. By working with local partners, IAA researchers gain comprehensive knowledge of developments in the region. This facilitates detailed analyses, which serve public and private decision-makers as important sources of information.
The IAA is the only institute in Germany that continuously monitors developments in the entire sub-Sahara region. It acts as a hub for the Africa-interested German public as well as for European research institutions. Under the umbrella of the GIGA, the IAA is the seat of the secretariat of the Vereinigung für Afrikawissenschaften in Deutschland (VAD; African Studies Association in Germany) and is represented on the board of the Africa-Europe Group for Interdisciplinary Studies (AEGIS). In addition, the IAA co-edits the award-winning Africa Yearbook and Africa Spectrum, which is listed on the Social Science Citation Index.
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Democratization, online first
GIGA Working Paper, No. 245, April 2014
Opladen, Berlin, Toronto: Barbara Budrich, 2014