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Analysis of Governance Standards

Using and Interpreting the APRM Standards

The official APRM documents cite nearly 3,000 pages of standards that have either been promulgated by the African Union or embraced by it. Understanding such a large volume of material can be a challenge for civil society. However the standards contain valuable descriptions of what governments are expected to do. To assist civil society in learning about the standards, this section includes a variety of scholarly papers and interpretations that can help users find the relevant portions of the standards and cite them in country review reports.

Drawing extra-governmental constituencies into regional integration initiatives is important in ensuring that durable systems emerge. The African Peer Review Mechanism (APRM) shows that in Africa, as in much of the world, involving civil society and business in regional integration efforts has been difficult. The primary reasons for this are a lack of awareness of integration processes, along with underdeveloped civil society and business organisations (especially organisations geared at transnational relations). Bodies set up to help facilitate such engagement – notably the continent’s regional parliaments – have failed to alter this dynamic. To foster broader engagement, public education must be undertaken, together with better organisation and mobilisation by civil society and business. (by Terence Corrigan)    pdf  View file (71.67 kB)

How Africans access – or ‘own’ – their landholdings is a matter of profound importance for the continent’s future. It touches on social welfare as well as prospects for economic development. This policy briefing provides an overview of the land question, drawing heavily on the Country Review Reports (CRRs) of the African Peer Review Mechanism (APRM). It argues that weak property rights are a major problem for Africa, but cautions against an assumption that full titling is an immediate solution. Rather, drawing on existing informal rights regimes in Africa – and gradually building formalised systems on this basis – offers a more promising avenue for creating effective and durable systems of property rights aligned with the continent’s realities. (by Terence Corrigan)

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During the 28th Ordinary Session of the Assembly of Heads of State and Government of the African Union, on 30-31 January 2017 in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, Member States resolved in decision Assembly/AU/Dec. 631(XXVIII) to entrust the African Peer Review Mechanism (APRM) with the responsibility to “play a monitoring and evaluation role for the African Union Agenda 2063 and the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals Agenda 2030”.

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Bridging Africa‘s developmental deficits has been the central question facing the continent‘s leaders, policy makers and people at large for decades. No less than any other part of the world, Africa aspires to stability, prosperity and rising living standards. Over the past three decades, Africa has seen glimpses of what might be possible. Multi-party elections, high economic growth rates, large foreign investments, technological revolutions and growing optimism have replaced the old view of Africa as 'The Hopeless Continent‘ with one of 'Africa Rising.‘

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This guide assesses how participatory processes like the IMF backed PRSP process achieve what they intend to achieve with public participation.

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This article, first appearing in Foreign Affairs, offers valuable insights into the meaning of democracy and constitutional order  (by Fareed Zakaria)

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An analysis of the report with notes on its most important elements.

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This short document provides an overview of the 47 standards cited in the political and democratic governance section of the APRM questionnaire. (by SAIIA)

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The Revised Code on Fiscal Transparency is arguably the most important economic governance standard, offering key information on what good fiscal governance systems should include.

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This document provides a thoughtful declaration on the meaning of democracy, reflecting on points that are not precisely stated in AU standards (1997). (by Inter-Parliamentary Union)

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