Research Group

Economic and Monetary Sovereignity in West Africa

Our research group investigates how West African societies have attempted to increase their political and economic sovereignty with a particular focus on the interaction between governments, finance and labor.

About the group

The JRG led by Dr. habil. Kai Koddenbrock, investigates historically and in comparative fashion how West African societies have attempted to increase their political and economic sovereignty with a particular focus on the interaction between governments, finance and labor. The group will attempt to find out historically how most West African countries became exporters of only one or two commodities with the help of foreign capital and military force. In the second step we will focus on how postcolonial, newly independent governments have attempted to move away from this with the help of domestic resources, the creation of public and private banks, foreign debt and, most recently, stronger relations to China since independence. Increasing economic complexity, diversifying the economy and thus to reduce dependencies on the world market have been perennial pursuits but have often failed. The Covid crisis has put this into stark relief, again. How can we explain recurrent debt crises and the difficulties in moving away from raw commodity export dependency? Which role do global and domestic social relations play and what does that mean for the state in West Africa? To find answers to these questions we work with notions such as the legacies of colonialism, the question of imperialism, racial capitalism, the creation and diversification of dependencies, financial subordination and coloniality and we are open to other terms that become productive in the research process.

Our team

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Kai Koddenbrock

Research Group Leader

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Isaac Abotebuno Akolgo

Research Associate

Caroline Cornier- Foto

Caroline Cornier

PhD Student

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Carla Coburger

Research Associate

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Hanna Estephan Eid

PhD Student

Fawziyya

Fawziyya Suglo Kartu Issah

Student Assistant

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Felix Birkner

Student Assistant

International Advisors

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Max Ajl

Wageningen University, NL

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Ingrid Harvold Kvangraven

King's College, London

Ndongo Samba SYLLA

Ndongo Samba Sylla

Rosa Luxemburg Foundation, Dakar

Publications

Contact Us

Dr. habil. Kai Koddenbrock

Bayreuth University

Hugo-Rüdel-Straße 10

D – 95540 Bayreuth

Sides

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