New frontiers of political economy in Southern Africa

Helena Perez Nino (University of Cambridge)
Christopher Cramer (SOAS)
Sara Dorman (University of Edinburgh)
Politics and International Relations
Appleton Tower, Lecture Theatre 5
Thursday 13 June, 16:15-18:00
Thursday 13 June, 17:55-19:40

Short abstract:

The panel focuses on expanding the analytical horizon of political economy in Southern Africa by interrogating patterns of extraction, production and transformation, and the political economy of governance and institutions. Our focus is Southern Africa at regional, national or sub-national scale.

Long abstract:

This panel sponsored by the Journal of Southern African Studies welcomes contributions that help expand the analytical horizon of the political economy of Southern Africa by interrogating classical debates or contributing new evidence and vectors of analysis. The political economy of Southern African countries is interrelated in dimensions ranging from the spatial organisation of extraction, production and transformation, to the political economy of governance and institutions. The focus of the panel is Southern Africa writ large at the regional, national or sub-national scales. We are particularly interested in: •Trajectories and dynamics of economic growth and crisis; Development politics and policies. •Poverty and inequality. Social differentiation and gender, race and generational fault-lines. •Class relations, class struggle, employment, informality and the 'precariat'. Collective action and unions. •Social reproduction and social movements. Public services, housing, social protests. •Social protection, social grants and cash transfer programmes. Pensions, social insurance and input subsidies. •Economic and political power, governance and institutions. Policy reform and resistance. State-owned enterprises and state monopolies. Industrial policy and structural transformation. •The political economy of the state, state-capital relations, elite bargains and 'developmental patrimonialism'. •Taxation and fiscal reform, trade policy. •Foreign direct investment, finance and financialization. Official development aid, emerging donors and trade relations. •The political economy of mineral-energetic complexes (O&G, coal, platinum, gold, copper); transformation industries (steel, aluminium); electricity generation and distribution. •Agrarian change and agricultural supply chains (cotton, soybeans, cashew, tobacco); Transport, logistics and services. •Historical materialism, feminist economics, decolonising political economy; methods and evidence in political economy.