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Effectiveness of Anti-Corruption Agencies in Southern Africa: Angola, Botswana, DRC, Lesotho, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, South Africa, Swaziland, Zambia and Zimbabwe

With reportedly over USD100 billion lost annually through graft and illicit practices, combatting corruption in Africa has been challenging. However, laws and policies at the continental, regional and national levels have been promulgated and enacted by African leaders. These initiatives have included the establishment of anti-corruption agencies mandated to tackle graft at national level, as well as coordinate bodies at regional and continental levels to ensure the harmonisation of normative standards and the adoption of best practices in the fight against corruption.

Yet, given the disparity between the apparent impunity enjoyed by public servants and the anti-corruption rhetoric of governments in the region, the effectiveness of these agencies is viewed with scepticism. This continent-wide study of anti-corruption agencies aims to gauge their relevance and effectiveness by assessing their independence, mandate, available resources, national ownership, capacities and strategic positioning.

These surveys include evidence-based recommendations calling for stronger, more relevant and effective institutions that are directly aligned to regional and continental anti-corruption frameworks, such as the African Union Convention on Preventing and Combatting Corruption (AUCPCC), which the ten countries in this current report – Angola, Botswana, DRC, Lesotho, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, South Africa, Swaziland, Zambia and Zimbabwe – have all ratified.

Election Management Bodies in Southern Africa: Comparative study of the electoral commissions’ contribution to electoral processes

Over the past two decades, Southern African countries have entrenched the use of elections as the only means and medium for electing governments and representative institutions in governance. Electoral Management Bodies (EMBs) are central to the delivery and quality of elections. These institutions are mandated to manage most or all aspects of the electoral process. Informed by diverse factors - the design, mandate, extent of powers and even the number of institutions responsible for electoral matters vary in each country. This study is a collaborative effort between the Open Society Initiative for Southern Africa (OSISA), the Open Society Foundation’s Africa Regional Office (AfRO) and the Electoral Commissions Forum of the Southern African Development Community (ECF-SADC).

North-South Knowledge Networks: Towards Equitable Collaboration Between Academics, Donors and Universities

Since the 1990s, internationalisation has become key for institutions wishing to secure funding for higher education and research. For the academic community, this strategic shift has had many consequences. Priorities have changed and been influenced by new ways of thinking about universities, and of measuring their impact in relation to each other and to their social goals. Debates are ongoing and hotly contested.

In this collection, a mix of renowned academics and newer voices reflect on some of the realities of international research partnerships. They both question and highlight the agency of academics, donors and research institutions in the geopolitics of knowledge and power. The contributors offer fresh insights on institutional transformation, the setting of research agendas, and access to research funding, while highlighting the dilemmas researchers face when their institutions are vulnerable to state and donor influence.

Offering a range of perspectives on why academics should collaborate and what for, this book will be useful to anyone interested in how scholars are adapting to the realities of international networking and how research institutions are finding innovative ways to make North–South partnerships and collaborations increasingly fair, sustainable and mutually beneficial.

Cape Town Harmonies: Memory, Humour & Resilience

The Delusion of Knowledge Transfer: The impact of foreign aid experts on policy-making in South Africa and Tanzania

With the rise of the ‘knowledge for development’ paradigm, expert advice has become a prime instrument of foreign aid. At the same time, it has been object of repeated criticism: the chronic failure of ‘technical assistance’ – a notion under which advice is commonly subsumed – has been documented in a host of studies. Nonetheless, international organisations continue to send advisors, promising to increase the ‘effectiveness’ of expert support if their technocratic recommendations are taken up.

This book reveals fundamental problems of expert advice in the context of aid that concern issues of power and legitimacy rather than merely flaws of implementation. Based on empirical evidence from South Africa and Tanzania, the authors show that aid-related advisory processes are inevitably obstructed by colliding interests, political pressures and hierarchical relations that impede knowledge transfer and mutual learning. As a result, recipient governments find themselves caught in a perpetual cycle of dependency, continuously advised by experts who convey the shifting paradigms and agendas of their respective donor governments.

For young democracies, the persistent presence of external actors is hazardous: ultimately, it poses a threat to the legitimacy of their governments if their policy-making becomes more responsive to foreign demands than to the preferences and needs of their citizens.

Change management in TVET colleges: Lessons learnt from the field of practice

The Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) college environment is marked by increasingly stark juxtapositions between what needs to be achieved in the post-school education sector and the increasing difficulty of current conditions. The ‘triple challenge’ of poverty, inequality and unemployment weighs heavily on the social, political and economic fabric of the country and expectations are high that the TVET colleges can make a pivotal contribution to counter these challenges. Despite laudable increases in TVET enrolment, the education system needs to work harder to accommodate the weight of demand for post school further education and training (FET) band qualifications from young people not in education, employment or training. At the same time, it is vital to secure adequate quality in TVET programmes which depend so much on the competence and commitment of college lecturers. This collection offers a set of research papers that provide new analytic and empirical material on:

• The political economy of TVET types in different countries which, by comparison, illuminate the South African case; • A periodisation of government interventions in the TVET sector over the last three decades;

• The unsettled state and status of TVET lecturers in relation to their job requirements and conditions of service;

• The halting evolution of collegial relationships between college lecturers towards higher collegiality;

• Employer expectations of college graduates and how colleges are responding; and

• An analysis of the outcomes of a college improvement intervention in Limpopo and the Eastern Cape.

This book will offer valuable information and insights for decision-makers as well as analysts of institutional change concerning links between education and economic growth, with particular regard to TVET graduates’ employment rates.