Welcome to Democracy in Africa, a new website dedicated to creating an online community of people that are interested in, and care about, the state of democracy in Africa. The website will collect together a wealth of information about politics in Africa, along with a regular blog about the latest political developments and research on the continent.
We have created Democracy in Africa to encourage more people to study democracy in Africa and to make it easier for those who are already working on the continent to share ideas and information. This is more important now than at any time over the last twenty years because donors, commentators, and the wider media are already beginning to give up on democracy in Africa. Following democratic backsliding in the DRC and Nigeria, and election-related crises in Côte d’Ivoire, Kenya, and Zimbabwe, it is easy to see why both domestic and international enthusiasm for multi-partyism has waned. But it is far too early to conclude that democracy is unfeasible in Africa. In the shadow of the headline-grabbing political crises of the last few years, democracy appears to be quietly consolidating in Benin, Ghana, Cape Verde, Mali, Namibia, and South Africa.
Now is not the time for defeatism, but to devote more time, resources, and energy to understanding why the introduction of multi-partyism has been more successful in some countries than in others. This website is intended as a small but hopefully significant contribution towards this effort. With your help, we will constantly update the list of articles, resources, and databases featured on the website, so that election results, data on legislatures, campaign images, and the best commentaries on African elections are brought together in one place.
Over the next few years we will be covering the fallout from the recent elections in Côte d’Ivoire, the ‘zoning’ controversy in Nigeria, the upcoming elections in Uganda, the fate of the power-sharing deals in Kenya and Zimbabwe, the struggle for press freedom in South Africa, the progress of the electoral-authoritarian regimes in the DRC and Rwanda, the way in which Ghana’s democracy manages the country’s newfound oil wealth, and all of the other major stories about elections and democracy in Africa that break along the way.
But to do this we need your help.
This website will only be as good as the people who contribute to it, so we need your help.
If you have comments on an article, news story, or blog post, you can enter them via the website or email them over to us.
If you know of a dataset we are not aware of, please let us know.
If you have seen a news article you think we should be publicising, please send it our way.
And if you would like to be a ‘guest blogger’, please send us a sample blog entry (of no more than 300 words) and a shortlist of the sorts of topics that you would like to write about.
Contact us at: firstname.lastname@example.org