nep-afr New Economics Papers
on Africa
Issue of 2018‒12‒17
five papers chosen by
Sam Sarpong
The University of Mines and Technology

  1. IFAD RESEARCH SERIES 21 - Does relative deprivation induce migration? Evidence from sub-Saharan Africa By Winters, P.; Kafle, K.; Benfica, R.
  2. The Benefits of Regional Trade Agreements in Africa By Fabien CANDAU; Julie SCHLICK; Geoffroy GUEPIE
  3. "The Out of Africa Hypothesis of Comparative Economic Development: Common Misconceptions" By Quamrul H. Ashraf; Oded Galor; Marc Klemp
  4. Apocalypse now? - Climate change and war in Africa By Stijn van Weezel

  1. By: Winters, P.; Kafle, K.; Benfica, R.
    Abstract: This paper challenges the traditional view that portrays income maximization as the main driver of migration and tests whether relative deprivation and social inequality lead to migration in sub-Saharan Africa. Examining data from the Living Standards Measurements Study – Integrated Surveys in Agriculture (LSMS-ISA) from Tanzania, Ethiopia, Malawi, Nigeria and Uganda, the paper finds that a household’s migration decision is based not only on its well-being status, but also on the position of the household relative to the wealth distribution in the local community. Results indicate that relative deprivation of wealth was positively associated with migration, implying a need to renew the discussion of relative deprivation and social inequality as a cause of migration in sub-Saharan Africa.
    Keywords: Agricultural Finance
    Date: 2018
  2. By: Fabien CANDAU; Julie SCHLICK; Geoffroy GUEPIE
    Abstract: Despite the marginalization of Africa in the world trade system, this article shows that African Regional Trade Agreements (RTAs) ushered an era of economic integration with strong trade creation effects over the period 1965-2012. Some agreements failed to deliver the expected trade gains, but the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA), the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), and the Southern African Development Community (SADC) have signicantly increased trade between members. Based on this analysis, a simple quantitative trade model is used (Arkolakis et al. 2012) to compare trade and welfare with and without these agreements. These counterfactual exercises show that RTAs have strongly affected trade costs, multilateral resistances and finally trade flows but with small effects on welfare.
    Date: 2018–12
  3. By: Quamrul H. Ashraf; Oded Galor; Marc Klemp
    Abstract: "The importance of the prehistoric migration of anatomically modern humans from Africa for comparative economic development has been the focus of a vibrant research agenda in the past decade. This influential literature has attracted the attention of some scholars from other disciplines, and in light of existing methodological gaps across fields, has perhaps unsurprisingly generated some significant misconceptions. This article examines the critical views expressed by some scholars from other disciplines, and establishes that they are based on fundamental misunderstandings of the statistical methodology, the conceptual framework, and the scope of the analysis that characterize this influential literature..
    Date: 2018
  4. By: Stijn van Weezel
    Abstract: There is a large empirical literature trying to quantify the potentially adverse affects of climate change on the risk of violent armed conflict, which focuses almost exclusively on linking annual variation in climatic conditions to violence. A major shortcoming of this approach is that it conflates climate variability with climate change, while also implicitly assuming that adverse weather shocks will immediately trigger violent contests over scarce resources. In contrast, this study exploits changes in local climate over a longer time period; using differences in the average standardised deviation of temperature and precipitation levels between 1989-2002 and 2003-2017 across the African continent. Bayesian model averaging is used to test whether variables measuring changes in local climate contribute consistently in explaining conflict risk between 2003-17. Using disaggregated data to account for local dynamics, the reduced-form estimation shows that temperature is robustly linked to violent armed conflict: moving from low to high temperature levels corresponds to a 31% increase in conflict risk. Changes in precipitation have no discernible effect. The results are robust to changing the benchmark period for the climate variables, accounting for conflict prevalence, and considering different types of violent conflict. Examining the predictive power of the models, a leave-one-out cross-validation highlights that including information on changes in local climate improves the predictive performance of the model, as measured by the area under the precision-recall curve, by seven points, from 0.51 to 0.58; 33 points above the baseline.
    Keywords: Climate; Civil war; Bayesian model averaging
    JEL: D74 N47 Q54
    Date: 2018–08
  5. By: Tigist Gebrehiwot (University of South Africa)
    Abstract: The study is written with the purpose of answering three basic questions: Firstly, how Africa implement the appropriate policy, which is relevant to its socio-economic contexts in creating inclusive economic growth? Secondly, how the educational programme incorporates traditional knowledge (TK) into the mainstream in recognising the importance of these pieces of knowledge to the people? Thirdly, what comprises an appropriate knowledge management in building a knowledge economy in Africa? The analysis of the study deals with the various challenges facing Africa transition to a knowledge economy. The significance of the study is to address Africa?s overlooked and neglected knowledge produced locally from an institution and informal sectors which has a detrimental effect on building an inclusive economy. To resolve the issue, it is argued that appropriate reform in the structure administering knowledge is necessary for creating opportunities for individuals in building a network of innovators in society. The emerging understanding of knowledge economy also will be utilised to find the most appropriate solutions in this regard. It is, therefore, this study will explore using descriptive approach to qualitative research, multi-disciplinary in nature, the management, the law, and economics by building bridges to the main disciplines working jointly to move beyond discipline specifics approach to address the issue. Both a desk and data-based approach utilising qualitative tools will be used in conducting this study.
    Keywords: Africa EconomyIntellectual PropertyManagementTraditional Knowledge
    Date: 2018–10

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