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Governing Africa’s Changing Societies: Dynamics of Reform

Ellen M. Lust and Stephen N. Ndegwa, editors
Governing Africa’s Changing Societies: Dynamics of Reform
ISBN: 978-1-58826-834-1
ISBN: 978-1-62637-106-4
2012/243 pages/LC: 2011053494
"Both engage[s] with the previous literature and explore[s] new theoretical terrain in order to explain the substantial variation in political and economic outcomes across the continent."—M. Anne Pitcher, Perspectives on Politics


What is the cumulative impact of the immense social, economic, and political changes that Africa has undergone in recent decades? What opportunities do those changes present to improve the lives of the continent's citizens?

Countering the prevailing mood of pessimism in the face of disappointed expectations, the authors of Governing Africa's Changing Societies demonstrate the significance of even incomplete reforms in the areas of competitive elections and democratization, gender relations, property rights, the public sector, and privatization, among others. In the aggregate, their work reveals how seemingly small or sluggish changes are accumulating to fundamentally, and positively, transform Africa's governance environment.


Ellen M. Lust is professor of political science at the University of Gothenburg and founding director of the Program on Governance and Local Development at both Yale University and the University of Gothenburg. <!—[if gte mso 9]> Normal 0 false false false EN-US X-NONE X-NONE MicrosoftInternetExplorer4 <![endif]—><!—[if gte mso 9]> <![endif]—><!—[if gte mso 10]> <![endif]—>Her publications include Structuring Conflict in the Arab World, the coedited Political Participation in the Middle East, and the edited textbook The Middle East. Stephen N. Ndegwa is adviser on fragile and conflict-affected situations at the World Bank. He is author of The Two Faces of Civil Society: NGOs and Politics in Africa and coeditor of A Decade of Democracy in Africa.


  • The Challenges of Governance in Africa’s Changing Societies—the Editors.
  • The Democracy-Governance Connection—M. Bratton.
  • Democracy and Economic Performance—P. Lewis.
  • Contested Land Rights in Rural Africa—C. Boone.
  • Property Rights: Preferences and Reform—A.K. Onoma.
  • Women’s Rights and Family Law Reform in Francophone Africa—S.D. Wing.
  • Religion, Democracy, and Education Reform in the Sahel—L.A. Villalón.
  • Rethinking the Dynamics of Reform in Africa—the Editors.