Africa is a UNESCO-MOST
network of African social scientists engaged in comparative research, monitoring
and evaluation of ethnic conflicts and social change in Africa. It attempts
to address ethnic issues in a more constructive, comparative and regional
perspective, identifying common denominators and drawing lessons from experiences
in specific countries and regions. One of its main objectives is to fill
the existing gaps in our knowledge and understanding of issues of ethnicity
and culture in order to contribute to conflict resolution and prevention.
In this perspective, it also aims at providing appropriate solutions to
policy makers in need of advice on ethnic oriented problems.
The main objective of the network is to provide a better understanding of the ethnicity and ethnic conflicts in Africa by collecting, analysing and disseminating information in an effort to provide an early warning system and prevent conflicts.
Specific objectives include:
b) conduct comparative research on specific ethnic issues in a number of African countries;
c) capacity building: training and mentoring of young scholars;
d) establish and maintain a database on ethnic conflicts
a) National Monitoring Units were established in Benin, Cameroon, Chad, Ivory Coast, Kenya, Nigeria, Togo, Zambia;
b) Leaders of national teams were trained in the collection and analysis of data;
c) A database has been established in Yaounde, Cameroon that collects, analyses and updates data sent in by national teams or co-ordinators;
d) Publications/Documentation: The Network has produced some major documents:
2) Bibliography on Ethnicity and Ethnic Conflict, edited by Nkwi & Njilie
3) Rapport Général sur Ethno-Net Afrique
4) Levelling the Playing Field: Combating Racism, Ethnicity and different Forms of Discrimination in Africa, edited by Nantang Jua & Nkwi
Some of these publications were disseminated.
e) The Network Website was established and is regularly updated.
g) The members of the network were trained on the use
of ICT for International Scientific Coopérataion
comparative research in African countries on ethnicity, politics and development;
The network is expected to constitute a database not only on ethnic conflicts and social transformation but will provide also basic information to governments, national and international institutions seeking lasting solutions to multi-ethnic and multi-cultural problems. Ethno-Net Africa will also be a resource centre with the capacity to respond to any ethnic issues or problems in Africa. Its comparative perspective will serve as a theoretical and practical model for the understanding of ethnic problems. As a cross-cultural institution, Ethno-Net Africa, will digest and circulate information through its bimonthly newsletter. Other products of the network will include the following:
Prof. Paul Nchoji Nkwi
To UNESCO's Management of Social Transformations Programme