Martin Acheampong

Research Fellow

  • Short CV

    • Since 01/2022: Research Fellow at the GIGA Institute for African Affairs (IAA)

    • 2017 - 2022: Doctoral Fellow at the Bamberg Graduate School of Social Sciences (BAGSS) – University of Bamberg

    • 02/2020 - 11/2020: Field Research in Ghana and South Africa in the scope of the doctoral project “The Legislators’ dilemma”

    • 04/2018 - 03/2019: Lecturer, Chair of Comparative Politics - University of Bamberg

    • 2016 - 2017: Researcher, Transformation of Political (Dis-)Order: Institutions, Values and Peace at the German Development Institute (DIE), Bonn

    • 2016: Research Assistant at the German Development Institute (DIE), Bonn

    • Education: PhD in Political Science, University of Bamberg (The Legislators’ dilemma: (In-)Formal Institutions, External Patronage and the Local-Elite-Centeredness of Parliamentary Representation in Africa’s Emerging Democracies); M.A. Development and Governance, University of Duisburg-Essen; B.A. Political Science and Sociology, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, Kumasi-Ghana

    Current Research

    • Democracy and Democratisation in Africa

    • (In-)Formal Political Institutions in Emerging Democracies

    • Political Representation

    • Parliaments in Africa

    • Personalization of Executive Power in Africa

    • Intra/inter-party competition

    Countries and Regions

    • Sub-Sahara Africa

    • Ghana

    • South Africa

    Martin Acheampong

    Research Fellow

    Developing Country Studies | 02/2022

    Is Ghana’s Democracy Counterproductive to Development? Democratic Short-Termism and the Politics of Development Planning in Ghana

    Elected political elites in Ghana face the dilemma of winning the next election by pursuing voter-pleasing, short-term policy goals or embarking on long-term structural transformation with short-term electoral disadvantages. This article investigates how they respond to this dilemma. The analysis demonstrates that competitive elections and associational liberties affect the pursuit of long-term policy planning in Ghana. The incentive to implement or abandon long term plans is shaped by the rational calculations of the country’s political elites in response to the short-term preferences of electorates.

    Martin Acheampong

    Research Fellow

    Journal of Legislative Studies | 2021

    Legislators’ Pathway to Power in Ghana: Intra-Party Competition, Clientelism and Legislator-Constituents’ Relationship

    There is a disconnect between Members of Parliament (MPs) in Ghana and their constituents. This article investigates why this is so despite the candidate-centeredness of the country's electoral institutions. The analysis shows that patron-client exchanges in internal party competitions in Ghana de-link MPs and constituency voters and instead recast this relationship between MPs and their party delegates.

    Martin Acheampong

    Research Fellow

    Research Project | 15/01/2022 - 14/12/2024

    COVID-19 and Executive Personalization in Sub-Saharan Africa, Asia, Latin America and the MENA Region

    In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, political leaders reacted by containment measures that, next to combating the spread of the pandemic, also presented a window of opportunity to bolster executives’ personal grasp on power. Personalization of power has been particularly worrying in the Global South where constraints on the chief executives were often already weak prior to the pandemic. This project assesses the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the personalization of executive power in 36 countries of the Global South.
    DFG, 2021-2024

    fluter. | Quote | 31/03/2022

    Make Ghana great again

    Speaker | 18/10/2022

    Welcome to Sodom

    Friedrich Ebert Foundation Bonn: 18/10/2022

    Invited talk on Europe's largest digital garbage dump in the middle of Africa: Agbogbloshie on the outskirts of the Ghanaian capital, Accra. The discussion focused on the living conditions and fate of the people who live there and recycle electronic waste generated mainly from the Global North.

    Martin Acheampong

    Research Fellow

    Speaker | 29/09/2022

    Attacking the Vote: Election Fears in Brazil and Beyond

    Many people fear rigged elections, when, on 2 October 2022, more than 150 million Brazilians are called to vote. President Jair Bolsonaro, seeking re-election, has repeatedly impugned the voting system. At this GIGA Forum, experts explore flawed, corrupt, or failed elections in Latin America, Asia, and Africa.

    Martin Acheampong

    Research Fellow


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