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2016 Conference: Chinese Infrastructure in Africa

Save the date for the 3rd Annual China-Africa Research Initiative (CARI) Conference, which will be held on October 13 & 14, 2016 at the Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS) in Washington DC. This year’s theme is “Chinese Infrastructure in Africa,” and we are pleased to have Dr. Jamie Monson, Professor of History and Director of African Studies at Michigan State University, as our keynote speaker.

Eventbrite - Orient Express: Chinese Infrastructure Engagement in Africa

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Working Paper 5: Cameroon

Working Paper 5: Capturing the Rains: A Comparative Study of Chinese Involvement in Cameroon's Hydropower Sector

This paper by Yunnan Chen and David G. Landry looks at two hydropower projects in Cameroon—one financed by China Eximbank, and one financed by a multilateral consortium led by the World Bank—to assess decisions around project financing, contracting, and implementation processes. It highlights several differences and similarities in institutional relations between project stakeholders, financiers, and contracted firms, and examines the environmental, social and labor issues that arose in both projects, offering insight into Chinese practices around infrastructure project financing and assessment standards, as well as World Bank practices as a re-emerging donor in the field of hydropower. Download Working Paper (PDF) »

Policy Brief 16: Kenya

Policy Brief 16: Local Politics Meets Chinese Engineers: A Study of the Chinese-Built Standard Gauge Railway Project in Kenya

This policy brief by Uwe Wissenbach and Yuan Wang examines how local Kenyan politics have affected the construction of the first phase of the SGR, which runs from Mombasa to Nairobi. Research was conducted through in-depth interviews with over 20 stakeholders, extensive review of publicly available documents and media coverage, and three field visits to project sites in November 2014, August 2015, and December 2015. Download Policy Brief (PDF) »

Policy Brief 14: Do Huawei's Training Programs Transfer Skills to Africa?

This policy brief by Benjamin Tsui examines Huawei's engagement in developing local talent in information communications and technologies (ICT) in Africa, specifically in Egypt, Kenya, Nigeria, and South Africa. Research was conducted using news reports, press releases, corporate reports, and academic studies. Download Policy Brief (PDF) »

Photo: Chinese President Xi Jinping addressing delegates at the opening of the FOCAC summit. EPA / ELMOND JIYANE / GCIS / HANDOUT. 

Policy Brief 13: Technology Transfer in Telecoms: Huawei and ZTE in South Africa

This policy brief by June Sun outlines three barriers to technology transfer from Chinese vendors to South African companies: increased managed services contracts, contestations for legitimacy, and weaknesses in the institutional framework. Download Policy Brief (PDF) »

Ivindo Nat'l. Park, Gabon. Credit: Michael Nichols, Nat'l Geographic

Ivindo Nat'l. Park, Gabon. Credit: Michael Nichols, Nat'l Geographic

Thoughts on China, Africa, Per Capita Income, and the Environment

Saturday, August 27, 2016

The environmental impact of China-Africa engagement is one of the top concerns of many who are critical of a rising China in Africa. Others acknowledge the issue as important, but maintain that some from wealthy countries want to impose Volvo standards in Volkswagen countries.
     I sometimes think about how these issues emerged in importance in our own country, the USA. This morning, I read a NYT review of a new book about President Franklin D. Roosevelt, who was the architect of so much of our government's institutional structure. Following in the footsteps of his presidential cousin Teddy Roosevelt, Franklin created 140 national wildlife refuges, established 29 national forests and 29 national parks and monuments but he also built many “habitat-destroying hydroelectric dams” and put in place the foundation of our national highway system…

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