Africa Day Conference 2024: Democratic Backsliding in West Africa

Fri Apr 19 2024 at 08:00 am to 08:00 pm UTC-04:00

University of Massachusetts Boston | Boston

Africa Scholars Forum at University of Massachusetts Boston
Publisher/HostAfrica Scholars Forum at University of Massachusetts Boston
Africa Day Conference 2024: Democratic Backsliding in West Africa
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Africa Scholars Forum is hosting a one-day conference that examines democratization challenges in West African through a range of questions.
About this Event

Event Description

This conference is scheduled to take place on April 19th, 2024, from 8:00 am – 8:00 pm at the UMass Boston Campus Center, in addition to six breakout sessions on various topics on democracy in West Africa, the conference includes keynote speakers and UMass Boston’s annual Africa Day gala night and cultural activities.

Democratic regime changes towards authoritarianism, referred to as democratic backsliding, are occurring all over the world. With recent promissory coups occurring in Mali, Guinea, Burkina Faso, and Niger, some have described the West African region as a haven for democratic reversal and return to arbitrary and repressive political power through the reestablishment of military regimes. Nonetheless, for a region with a sixtyyear history of difficult postcolonial democratic transitions and given the ironic popular support for the incoming non-democratic regimes in backsliding countries, democratization in the region is riddled with contestation, contradictions, as well as unexamined alternative opportunities and democratic routes.

The Africa Scholars Forum (ASF) at the University of Massachusetts-Boston’s John W McCormack School of Policy and Global Studies and Boston University’s West African Research Association (WARA) are pleased to host a one-day conference that examines democratization challenges, limitations and opportunities in the West African region through a range of questions. Are liberal democratic regimes and institutions consolidating in West Africa? What is the relationship between democracy and development in the region? What role does insecurity – human rights and terrorism – play in consolidating or reversing democracy in West Africa? What role are the resurgence of an anticolonial struggle and the movement to decolonize Africa playing? Finally, with ECOWAS and the African Union playing resurgent roles in responding to coups and democratization initiatives in the region, what role are African regionalism and sub regionalism playing in addressing democratic reversal?

The McCormack School’s Africa Scholars Forum (ASF) at UMass Boston is excited to collaborate with the West African Research Association (WARA) in hosting its Northeast/New England regional conference initiative in Spring 2024 that seeks to build active regional communities of West Africa related scholars that include Minority Serving Institutions (MSI) and community college students and faculty to enhance the opportunities for scholarly exchange, provide mentoring resources, and build regional cooperation and resource sharing. To achieve our goals, we encourage African/Africana studies scholars in the Northeast/New England area to submit papers as well as plan to attend the conference.



Conference Abstract Submission Information

To participate as a paper panelist, submit a 500 word abstract to one of the six session themes below HERE:

1. Explaining Democratic Backsliding in West Africa

2. Democratic and Liberal Institutions and Polities in West Africa

3. Democracy and Development in West Africa

4. Security and Democracy in West Africa

5. Anticolonialism, De-colonialism and Democracy in West Africa

6. Regionalism and Democracy in West Africa

Papers may examine themes and topics related to the conference concept and one of the six sessions. Papers must be on a country or countries in the West African region. Papers may cover a range of interdisciplinary subjects in political, economic, social, cultural contexts, as well as in local, national, regional, and global sites of analysis. Best papers will qualify for a conference proceedings publication. Deadline for abstract submissions is February 29th, 2024!

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Event Venue & Nearby Stays

University of Massachusetts Boston, Campus Center Ballroom B & C, Boston, United States

Tickets

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