1 April 2016


Orange Room, Egmont Palace at Place du Petit Sablon 8 1000 Brussel

Nic Cheeseman will discuss his his new book Democracy in Africa with Nina Wilén and Tomas Van Acker, through an analysis of recent and ongoing democratic crises in Burundi, Kenya, and Uganda.

This book provides the first comprehensive overview of the history of democracy in Africa and explains why the continent’s democratic experiments have so often failed, as well as how they could succeed. It grapples with some of the most important questions facing Africa and democracy today, including whether international actors should try and promote democracy abroad, how to design political systems that manage ethnic diversity, and why democratic governments often make bad policy decisions. Beginning in the colonial period with the introduction of multi-party elections and ending in 2013 with the collapse of democracy in Mali and South Sudan, the book describes the rise of authoritarian states in the 1970s; the attempts of trade unions and some religious groups to check the abuse of power in the 1980s; the remarkable return of multiparty politics in the 1990s; and finally, the tragic tendency for elections to exacerbate corruption and violence.

Koen Vlassenroot – Director of the Africa Programme at Egmont Institute/Director of the Conflict Research Group, University of Ghent


Nic Cheeseman – Associate Professor in African Politics at the African Study Centre, University of Oxford

Nina Wilén– Post-doctoral Research Fellow at Université Libre de Bruxelles

Tomas Van Acker – Research Fellow at the Conflict Research Group, University of Ghent

Places are limited so please register in advance deadline 30 March by sending an email to

Registration for the conference starts at 13.45

Please let us know if you cancel your participation.


(Photo credit: Giampaolo-Musumeci_CNCD-11.11.11)