The Trouble with Africa: Why Foreign Aid Isn't Working




Author: Robert Calderisi
Type: eBook
Date Released: 2006
Format: pdf
Language: English
Page Count: 256
Isbn10 Code: 1403971250
Isbn13 Code: 9781403983268


From Publishers Weekly It isn't the legacy of the slave trade or colonialism, or the supposed inequities of globalization and world trade, that are to blame for Africa's travails, argues this stimulating contrarian essay. The author insists that Africa's problems are largely of its own making, the product of dictatorial, kleptocratic governments; rampant corruption; economic policies that hobble agriculture, discourage private investment and strangle new businesses with red tape; and a cultural fatalism that inures Africans to misery. Calderisi draws on his experience as a World Bank official in Africa, peppering his analysis with personal anecdotes about Africa's callous, venal officialdom and misguided economic policies. He offers a muted defense of World Bank policies, but also decries Western "political correctness" in indulging Africa's dysfunctions and calls for a new tough-love approach to foreign aid. Assistance to most countries, he contends, should be cut in half and conditioned on thorough democratic reforms and strict oversight by Western donors; responsible governments—he lists Uganda, Ghana, Tanzania, Mozambique and Mali—should get a large increase in aid with few strings attached. Calderisi's focus on Africa's internal faults and his somewhat essentialist musings on the "African character" will stir controversy, but his cogent argument is an important addition to the conversation over Africa's future. (Mar. 9) Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. Review "This politically-incorrect work is a boisterous, entertaining and highly accessible polemic by a man who, when it comes to development and Africa, has every reason to know his onions. The author challenges the shibboleths of the aid industry with courage, compassion and humour. A timely and bracing read."--Michela Wrong, Author of In the Footsteps of Mr. Kurtz: Living on the Brink of Disaster in the Congo. "At first, this book made my hair stand on end, but then I saw it as the heartfelt cry of a lover of Africa who has devoted his best years to the continent. His analysis is disturbing and non-conformist, but I agree with his suggestions. He was not born one, but he is nonetheless a great 'African'."--Martin Ziguélé, Prime Minister of the Central African Republic (2001-2003) and runner-up in the March-April 2005 presidential elections. "The Trouble with Africa is a blast of fresh air over a continent that has for decades been suffocating under a blanket of well meant concern, ineffectual at best, and harmful at worst."--Michael Holman, former Africa editor, Financial Times"This is a hard-hitting, brutally honest personal essay about Africa. It is gripping, well-researched and fascinating. Corrupt and incompetent African government officials will fret over this but it is the bitter truth the African people would want told to the world."--George B.N. Ayittey, Ph.D., Distinguished Economist at American University and President of The Free Africa Foundation, Washington, D.C. "This is a timely, intriguing and provocative book. The author's love of the continent shines through every line, yet his bold suggestions will raise some eyebrows and provoke debate (as they should). The book ripples with good stories, mixes passion and reason, and is very often simply touching."--Baroness Lynda Chalker, former Minister of Overseas Development for the United Kingdom

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