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The Economic Commission for Africa (ECA) and development in Africa.

Ekpenyong, Ekei Umo (1990) The Economic Commission for Africa (ECA) and development in Africa. PhD thesis, London School of Economics and Political Science (United Kingdom).

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Abstract

In 1988, the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (ECA) celebrated its 30th anniversary amidst increasing demands from its member states that it should formulate and implement concrete and realistic programmes which give value for money, and that it should evolve a development philosophy and strategy reflecting African conditions. This thesis evaluates and analyzes the role of the ECA covering the period 1958-88, on the basis of fieldwork conducted at the ECA's headquarters and at one of its subregional offices in North Africa. Secondary materials were obtained from ECA documents, journals and books. The argument is that the ECA has been unable to transform itself from a research-oriented institution into an operational one. The main proposition is that the ECA was unable to play a vital and effective role in development because of internal constraints. It has evolved as a complex bureaucracy without a clear mission, objectives and policies. Its scope of operations and strategies are shrouded in uncertainty. Furthermore, the demands for development have outstripped the capabilities of the Commission. As a result it has been of marginal concern to African states. The study is in two parts. Part I consists of the introductory chapter; Chapter 2 examines the Commission's structure and organization, work programmes and resources; Chapter 3 examines its intellectual contribution to the debate on development in Africa; Chapter 4 refers to one of its major strategies for regional co-operation and integration, while Chapter 5 is an historical analysis of its efforts to decentralize. Part II consists of Chapters 6-9, covering the ECA in West, Eastern and Southern, Central and North Africa. The conclusion (Chapter 10) is unhappily pessimistic, namely that in its present form the ECA cannot play a meaningful role in development in Africa.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Uncontrolled Keywords: Economics, General, Political Science, International Relations, African Studies
Sets: Collections > ProQuest Etheses
URI: http://etheses.lse.ac.uk/id/eprint/1210

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