news analysis advocacy
tips on searching
   the web allafrica.com  

 

AfricaFocus Bulletins, by topic
Major Topic Areas: Economy & Development | Health | Peace & Security | Politics & Human Rights
Special Topics: Agriculture | Aid, Poverty, & Public Investment | Culture & the Media | Debt | Education
Environment & Climate Change | Information & Communication Technology (ICT) | Migration | Trade

Major Topic Areas

Economy and Development Go to full list on this topic
February 24, 2020  USA/Global: National and Global Inequalities Are Intertwined http://www.africafocus.org/docs20/iff2002.php
    The recession that began in 2008 brought new life to the public debate on class and racial inequality in the United States. The #OccupyWallStreet demonstrations in 2011 may have left no institutional legacy, but they shined a spotlight on a yawning wealth gap and the role of the “one percent.” #BlackLivesMatter and related movements challenged complacency on entrenched racism … Public awareness of inequality, like awareness of climate change, was rising even before President Trump took office. But his administration’s sharp turn toward denial and regression on both issues has spurred active opposition and cut into the complacency of conventional Democratic Party politics.

Health Go to full list on this topic
October 28, 2019  Africa/Global: Untapped Potential for Africa Climate Actions http://www.africafocus.org/docs19/clim1910.php
    From off-grid solar home systems (SHS) to utility-scale solar and wind installations, the potential for major advances in use of renewable energy is growing rapidly on the African continent. If this potential is materialized at a faster pace, Africa countries could contribute significantly to mitigating the global climate crisis. This would also reduce the ongoing damage to the environmental health of their citizens, whether from kerosene lamps in rural areas or massive coal pollution in South Africa.

Peace and Security Go to full list on this topic
January 13, 2020  Russia/Africa: Upping Its Stake in Multi-Player Field http://www.africafocus.org/docs20/russ2001.php
    The Russia-Africa summit in Sochi, Russia in late October 2019 prompted a flurry of news coverage, highlighting such headline figures as sales agreements amounting to more than $12 billion. But it was not clear how much this was a real sign of significant expansion of Russian influence or primarily a public relations gloss on more limited involvement. Among the more analytical articles covering the summit was a well-informed article by Joe Penney in Passblue on October 28, which noted that ”While many memorandums were signed, actual contracts were few and far between, inviting speculation as to whether the summit was more about power projection than real business.”

Politcs and Human Rights Go to full list on this topic
February 10, 2020  Malawi: Historic Victory for Rule of Law http://www.africafocus.org/docs20/mal2002.php
    “On Monday, Malawi´s High Court nullified the country’s May presidential elections. The 500-page ruling includes a laundry list of election irregularities — and faults the Malawi Electoral Commission (MEC) for failing to carry out its responsibilities according to the constitution and electoral law. The court ruled that President Peter Mutharika was “not duly elected” and called for fresh elections within 150 days. … This ruling is historic. It is the first in Malawi and only the second in Africa (Kenya was the first) to nullify an election and call for a rerun.” - Kim Yi Dionne and Boniface Dulani

Special Topics

Agriculture Go to full list on this topic
July 29, 2019  Africa/Global: Agribusiness vs. Agroecology http://www.africafocus.org/docs19/ag1907.php
    “It is not surprising, of course, that those with financial interests in the current input-intensive systems are responding to growing calls for agroecology with attacks on its efficacy as a systematic approach that can sustainably feed a growing population. What is surprising is that such responses are so ill-informed about the scientific innovations agroecology offers to small-scale farmers who are being so poorly served by ´green revolution´ approaches.” - Timothy A. Wise

Aid, Poverty & Public Investment Go to full list on this topic
January 29, 2018  Africa/Global: Humanitarian Attention Deficits http://www.africafocus.org/docs18/hum1801.php
    The international system of response to humanitarian crises is flawed. And the often-repeated call to focus on addressing causes of crises and structural flaws in the system, instead of only providing short-term relief, is undeniably justified. But current trends, paralleling austerity programs and cuts in services at domestic levels in the United States and around the world, are not moving in the direction of fundamental reform. Instead, they are further diminishing the already inadequate resources devoted to saving lives.

Culture & the Media Go to full list on this topic
February 26, 2019  USA/Africa: From Wakanda to Reparations, Part 1 http://www.africafocus.org/docs19/usa1902a.php
    Jelani Cobb: “Chadwick Boseman’s T’Challa, the Black Panther and the King of Wakanda, confronts Erik Killmonger, a black American mercenary, played by Michael B. Jordan, as a rival, but the two characters are essentially duelling responses to five centuries of African exploitation at the hands of the West. The villain, to the extent that the term applies, is history itself.” Karen Attiah: “Indeed, ´Black Panther´ offers a radical vision of what black national power and internationalism could look like, if we trusted, respected, and elevated black women … In ´Black Panther,´ as in real life, black women be saving ev-ery-body, white or black.”

Debt Go to full list on this topic
February 24, 2020  USA/Global: National and Global Inequalities Are Intertwined http://www.africafocus.org/docs20/iff2002.php
    The recession that began in 2008 brought new life to the public debate on class and racial inequality in the United States. The #OccupyWallStreet demonstrations in 2011 may have left no institutional legacy, but they shined a spotlight on a yawning wealth gap and the role of the “one percent.” #BlackLivesMatter and related movements challenged complacency on entrenched racism … Public awareness of inequality, like awareness of climate change, was rising even before President Trump took office. But his administration’s sharp turn toward denial and regression on both issues has spurred active opposition and cut into the complacency of conventional Democratic Party politics.

Education Go to full list on this topic
August 8, 2017  Africa: Bridge to Education, or to Nowhere? http://www.africafocus.org/docs17/educ1708.php
    "When Liberia's Minister of Education, George Werner, announced last spring that he was inviting foreign education companies and non-profits to run our public schools, our country came under the international spotlight, both in Western media and for education activists. ... Quickly, Liberia was turned into a battlefield between those who see for-profit 'charter' schools as the solution to the problems that plague public education across the world, and those of us who point to underinvestment and poor management as the true culprits." - Mary Mulbah, president, National Teachers' Association of Liberia

Environment & Climate Change Go to full list on this topic
January 27, 2020  USA/Global: Green New Deal Can and Must Be Global http://www.africafocus.org/docs20/clim2001.php
    July 2019 was the hottest month ever recorded worldwide, as a wide swath of the continental United States sweltered with heat indexes of over 100° F. This northern hemisphere summer also saw unprecedented heat waves in Europe and in the Arctic, from Alaska to Siberia. Greenland´s glaciers were melting at a unprecedented rate. Add in more frequent storms, flooding and wildfires, and the scale of the crisis is harder and harder to ignore, even in the United States, where climate denialism has been more prevalent than in any other major country.

Information & Communication Technology Go to full list on this topic
January 30, 2017  Kenya: State of the Internet http://www.africafocus.org/docs17/ken1701.php
    Kenya has long been a global technology leader for innovation in mobile and internet technology, including the use of mobile phones for uses as diverse as cash transfers and crowdsourcing of reports on election violence (in 2008). Kenya also features an active press and civil society accustomed to speaking out about national issues including corruption and human rights violations. With national general elections scheduled for August this year, these assets can play important roles in sustaining peace and democracy. But they may also be threatened by government restrictions or by use of social media for propaganda and incitement to violence.

Migration Go to full list on this topic
November 25, 2019  USA/Africa: At Home in Maine http://www.africafocus.org/docs19/migr1911.php
    “Safiya overcame so many obstacles, I can’t find the words to describe how much we’re proud of her. Internet trolls could not stop her, threats could not stop her. She’s the perspective the city needs. It’s a really big deal, a tremendous transformation for this city.” - Mo Khalid, speaking of his sister Safiya Khalid on her election to the Lewiston, Maine City Council on November 6, 2019

Trade Go to full list on this topic
December 9, 2019  Africa: Continental Unity and Industrialization? http://www.africafocus.org/docs19/fta1912.php
    “If it unfolds appropriately, the AfCFTA (African Continental Free Trade Area) could facilitate the emergence of regional value chains that allow the continent as a whole to move to a higher level of value-added production. These would arise if its preferences facilitate the emergence of higher value-added productive activities in a number of countries producing components for an increasing range of “products of the African continent” supplied to consumers on the continent, as well as eventually also exported. ... This would of course depend not just on a tariff regime but on programmes addressing the other barriers identified in the development integration paradigm – inadequate infrastructure and more effective cooperation to promote industrial development.” – Rob Davies, former South African Minister of Trade and Industry, 2009-2019