Why art and culture contribute more to an economy than growth and jobs

Jen Snowball, Rhodes University There is growing international interest in the potential of the cultural and creative industries to drive sustainable development and create inclusive job opportunities. An indication of this is a recent set of UNESCO guidelines on how to measure and compile statistics about the economic contribution of the cultural industries. But should …

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Why Kampala holds single biggest growth opportunity for Uganda

Paul Collier, University of Oxford and Astrid Haas, London School of Economics and Political Science Uganda’s economy has been growing steadily over the past decade. Like many other developing countries, its growth has benefited from a confluence of external events, including a sustained increase in commodity prices and partial debt relief. But since the end …

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Shedding fresh light on China’s investment choices in Africa

Wenjie Chen, George Washington University and Heiwai Tang, Johns Hopkins University China’s economic engagement in Africa tends to elicit controversy. Many Chinese deals are accompanied by Western headlines such as “China in Africa: Investment or Exploitation?”; or “Clinton warns against ‘new colonialism’ in Africa.” Yet in recent African public opinion polls China scored higher in …

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Why South Africa’s economy is likely to grow more slowly than its potential

Jakkie Cilliers, University of Pretoria South Africa is generally a divided, unhappy and increasingly corrupt country with its growth potential hampered by contradictory and ever-changing government policy. It needs fast economic growth to reduce high unemployment and poverty but that has not been forthcoming for two reasons. The first is that expenditure to redress the …

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Done right, urbanisation can boost living standards in Africa

Patricia Jones, University of Oxford Sub-Saharan African countries are urbanising fast. Currently, 335 million people are living in urban areas across the continent and this number is expected to double in the next twenty-five years. But as African cities have grown so have their problems. They are more congested than they were a decade ago, …

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