African Futures

The African Futures Project is an ongoing collaboration between the Pardee Center and the Institute for Security Studies (ISS). Headquartered in Pretoria, South Africa, ISS is a pan-African think-tank focused on issues of human security. The Pardee Center and ISS collaborate on research projects and publications across a broad range of human security and human development topics, as indicated below.

A new report published by the Pardee Center and the Institute for Security Studies (ISS) explores a series of ambitious but realistic interventions to improve economic growth and development in Nigeria. Authors Julia Schunemann of ISS and Alex Porter, Research Associate at the Pardee Center, find that Nigeria’s basic physical infrastructure deficit severely undermines the country’s prospects for economic growth and development. Meanwhile, rapid population growth in Nigeria will compound the challenge of inadequate basic infrastructure. Building the Future: Infrastructure in Nigeria until 2040 uses IFs to take an integrated, longterm approach to accelerating Nigeria's infrastructure development. The report was launched at an event in Abuja on December 6, co-hosted by ISS and the delegation of the European Union to Nigeria.

Few African countries have developed as rapidly as Ethiopia over the past 25 years and that economic growth has also been paired with a sizeable expansion of service delivery. Nonetheless, Ethiopians continue to suffer from some of the lowest levels of access to basic services of any country in Africa – and indeed the world. This policy brief summarises the results from a more comprehensive study that explores options for the Government of Ethiopia and its development partners to advance human development and economic growth between now and 2030.

A report from the African Futures Project, a collaboration between the Pardee Center and the Institute for Security Studies, uses IFs to assess Mozambique’s long-term development prospects. The discovery that Mozambique holds one of the largest reserves of natural gas in the world has generated great optimism about the country’s future. But the recent sovereign debt crisis has cast serious doubt on the ability of the country to effectively manage the associated profits and better promote human development. The report concludes that without a concerted effort to ensure transparent management of gas revenues and channel that windfall into investment in basic human development, the country will continue to face barriers to inclusive growth. Without basic service delivery and better budget management, gas reserves won’t help Mozambique’s poorest.

Africa has the highest prevalence of communicable diseases in the world. In 2015, more than three times as many people died from AIDS in sub-Saharan Africa, and more than ten times as many people died from malaria as in the rest of the world combined. Non-communicable diseases are also increasing on the continent. This paper uses the International Futures forecasting system to explore the effects on human development of Africa’s achieving targets 3.3 and 3.4 of the Sustainable Development Goals.

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It is likely that South Africa is overexploiting its water resources at the national level, as water withdrawals currently exceed reliable supply. Using the International Futures forecasting system, this paper forecasts that withdrawals in all three sectors (municipal, industrial and agricultural) will increase over the next 20 years.

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Access to water, sanitation and hygiene is indispensable to development, but what will it take for Africa to achieve universal access in 15 years? This paper uses the International Futures forecasting system to explore Sustainable Development Goal 6, which promises water, sanitation and hygiene to all by 2030.

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This brief explores potential development paths for Western Cape education through 2040.

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This policy brief analyses two sets of challenges, unequal access and inadequate technology, skills and governance, in order to explore some of the outcomes of pursuing policies designed to address them – first in isolation and then in combination.

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This policy brief explores future challenges facing electricity in South Africa, and offers potential solutions.

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Electricity generation in South Africa is changing, but whether the electricity grid will be able to adapt to these changes is uncertain. This paper presents an alternative frame for the current electricity challenges by focusing on the electricity grid. Using the International Futures forecasting model, the African Futures Project has built three scenarios to 2050 to inform policymakers of the long-term implications of grid decisions. With coordinated planning, improved operational strategies and coherent policies, renewable energy can contribute significantly to the energy mix by 2050, help increase economic growth and benefit all South Africans. These interventions, however, will only be successful if there is a clear plan for the structure of the electricity sector.

 

 

This paper explores the changing power capabilities of Algeria, Egypt, Ethiopia, Nigeria, and South Africa (the ‘Big Five’) over the next 25 years.

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This paper updates an earlier AFP exploration of the possibilities for eradication of extreme poverty on the African continent. 

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Using the International Futures (IFs) forecasting system, this paper first presents a plausible long-term population forecast for Namibia. This forecast is then used to assess key targets from the National Development Plan (NDP4) and Vision 2030, Namibia’s long-term development strategy. The paper then plots three scenarios to chart Namibia’s potential progress. Under the Current Path scenario, the economy continues to grow, but many targets remain out of reach. The Infrastructure Access scenario maps a future where Namibia invests heavily in infrastructure development, but this translates into less investment in other vital sectors. Finally, the Leave No Namibian Out scenario sees overall increases in human development and economic growth, along with a slight reduction in inequality by 2030, but deep-seated structural challenges remain.

 

 

This paper explores the implications of an emerging water crisis in South Africa and steps that that might be taken to prevent/ameliorate that crisis. 

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This paper explores the possibilities for the eradication of extreme poverty on the African continent. 

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Africa must think more systematically about long-term trends and the future in order to take full advantage of opportunities from economic growth.

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This paper explores both the positive and negative possibilities for South Africa of shale gas development through hydraulic fracturing or "fracking."

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This paper uses the International Futures modeling system to explore the feasibility of the central economic growth target in South Africa's National Development Plan 2030. 

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This paper explores South Africa's fertility, mortality, and migration outlooks, with a particular emphasis on the uncertainty surrounding migration.

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This paper uses the International Futures forecasting system to explore potential paths of human development in South Africa's Western Cape to the year 2040. 

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Exploration of the prospects for 26 conflict-ridden African countries shows them to be on a slow trajectory to long-term peace and development.

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This brief explores not only policy choices to facilitate increased crop production in Africa, but also interventions to direct increases in crops to meet nutritional needs within Africa. 

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This policy brief explores the possible cumulative beneficial impacts by 2050 if Africa were able to eliminate malarial infection by 2025. 

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This brief analyzes the developmental risk factors contributing to rapid increases in road traffic accidents in African countries. It then identifies policy interventions to address these risks and forecasts their beneficial results.

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This monograph draws on the resources of the Institute for Security Studies and the Pardee Center's International Futures modeling system to provide an extensive analysis of African development to the year 2050. 

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This paper presents two scenarios for the continued advancement of education in Africa and explores their impacts on development.

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This paper explores the impact of increased access to clean water and sanitation on development in Africa.

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