This Panel examines Africa's development and globalisation. What innovative ways can Africa (African countries) adopt to rethink the challenges of globalization and maintain an open society that promotes inclusive sustainable development?
African countries have relatively benefited less from the positive effects of globalization, compared with other parts of the world, particularly so in areas of social, economic and inclusive development. During the post independent period, many African countries adopted mainly inward- oriented development strategies which failed to take advantage of the prospects of globalization in the 1970s and 1980s. This trend has continued to date since the continent still depends on primary commodities. Rather than being more integrated into the global economy, African countries are largely marginalized resulting in socio-economic stagnation and challenges. The past two decades have also increased globalization influence in Africa as a result of domestic and international policies such as trade policies and other globalization impulses including technological development and enhanced communication. Consequently, the incident of poverty on the continent has risen. Both urban and rural poverty are evident in Africa, however, rural poverty is more prevalent and severe. The gloomy picture of the poverty and inequality situation gives little hope that Africa can reap the full benefit of globalization unless it scales up efforts and reposition itself. It is within this context that this panel invites papers that critically engage the concept of globalization with specific emphases on how Africa can reposition itself and take advantage of the full potential of globalization to promoting socio-economic and inclusive development. We welcome papers from both African and non-African scholars on the diverse perspectives of the issue.