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Regional Integration and Africa's Development Trajectory: meta-theories, expectations and reality

Regional Integration and Africa's Development Trajectory: meta-theories, expectations and... Abstract Regional integration remains an integral part of Africa's development strategy and has underpinned most pan-African development policies for the past 50 years. This paper explores the issue of regional integration in the context of ‘development’ theory and the neo-patrimonial state system in Africa. A central contention of the paper is that Western, Euro-centric conceptions of regionalism, particularly those centred on the market integration approach, have promoted a very biased understanding of regional integration in many parts of the developing world. Using southern Africa as an exemplar case study, the paper argues that the various meta-theories focused on explaining the political economy of regionalism, often closely allied to a development theory paradigm, fail to account for the nature, character and evolution of regional integration. Regional integration in sub-Saharan Africa has been conceived and analysed in the light of the market-led approach, modernity and development. Thus far, it is has failed. This paper therefore explores why market-led regional integration has failed and why, for the foreseeable future, it will continue to do so. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Third World Quarterly Taylor & Francis

Regional Integration and Africa's Development Trajectory: meta-theories, expectations and reality

Third World Quarterly , Volume 30 (4): 21 – Jun 1, 2009
21 pages

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References (49)

Publisher
Taylor & Francis
Copyright
Copyright Taylor & Francis Group, LLC
ISSN
1360-2241
eISSN
0143-6597
DOI
10.1080/01436590902867136
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Abstract Regional integration remains an integral part of Africa's development strategy and has underpinned most pan-African development policies for the past 50 years. This paper explores the issue of regional integration in the context of ‘development’ theory and the neo-patrimonial state system in Africa. A central contention of the paper is that Western, Euro-centric conceptions of regionalism, particularly those centred on the market integration approach, have promoted a very biased understanding of regional integration in many parts of the developing world. Using southern Africa as an exemplar case study, the paper argues that the various meta-theories focused on explaining the political economy of regionalism, often closely allied to a development theory paradigm, fail to account for the nature, character and evolution of regional integration. Regional integration in sub-Saharan Africa has been conceived and analysed in the light of the market-led approach, modernity and development. Thus far, it is has failed. This paper therefore explores why market-led regional integration has failed and why, for the foreseeable future, it will continue to do so.

Journal

Third World QuarterlyTaylor & Francis

Published: Jun 1, 2009

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