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Africa

Sub-Saharan Africa is a macro-region in transformation. It is affected by traditional and emerging threats, growing violent extremism and radicalisation, new forms of intra-state violence, structural and climate-related vulnerabilities, social grievances, and migratory pressures. At the same time, the continent is also witnessing fast-paced political, economic, and technological progress, which is profoundly changing its societies and institutions, and triggering a new prominence of African countries in the global arena. 

The relationship between the European Union and Africa is evolving accordingly, going beyond development, humanitarian and security concerns, to include a broader and diversified engagement on migration and mobility, education and skills development, strengthened resilience and governance, inclusive growth and job creation. The EU Global Strategy calls for a change in mindset and a change in policy, seeing the African Union and the EU as privileged and equal partners to shape a fairer, multilateral global order. This new approach will also shape the post-Cotonou agreement and EU support to the Agenda 2063.

The EUISS provides innovative research, analysis and advice to support Africa-related policy planning and implementation. The EUISS uses its convening power to facilitate knowledge sharing, brainstorming, consensus building, dialogues with stakeholders and local partners, to break new ground on matters affecting Africa-EU relations. The Institute looks at instability hotspots, such as the Sahel, the Lake Chad Basin and the Horn of Africa, assessing interventions and formulating recommendations on how to strengthen the implementation of the EU’s integrated approach. The EUISS also monitors political, economic, security trends in countries at risk of falling or relapsing into conflict, to make the case for prevention when EU action can be impactful. Finally, the EUISS studies the role of new geopolitical actors expanding their influence in Africa, and emerging threats, such as cyber risks triggered by the digital revolution.

African Futures 2030 Task Force

From November 2019 to the end of 2020, the EUISS is running an African Futures 2030 Task Force.

The main objective of this Task Force is to explore trends affecting the future of Africa in the next ten years, emphasising challenges and opportunities for policymaking. For more information, please click here.

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  • 18January 2021

    On 22 January, the EUISS will live-stream '2021 What's to come?'. This event will help you think through the challenges ahead, anticipate disruptions, and be better prepared for the coming year.

  • Backdrop image
    15December 2020

    On 15 December 2020, the EUISS and the European Council’s Working Party on Africa (COAFR) held their ninth meeting to discuss Turkey’s involvement in Africa. Members of the European Council’s Working Group on Enlargement and Countries Negotiating Accession to the EU (COELA) also participated in the discussion.

  • Download Brief
    04December 2020
    Despite routine declarations that connect Sahelian terrorism to climatic and environmental factors, available scientific evidence does not allow us to conclude whether (and what) climatic factors impact (and how) conflict variability and terrorism. This Brief explores why.
  • 15October 2020

    The EUISS and the European Council’s Working Party on Africa (COAFR) held their eighth meeting and first virtual teleconference to discuss Russia in Africa. Members of the European Council’s Working Party on Eastern Europe and Central Asia (COEST) also participated to the discussion.

  • 22September 2020

    The workshop 'Debating stability in North Africa, the Sahel and Horn of Africa: How transnational dynamics and geopolitics impact governance and development' took place in the morning of September 22nd in Pisa, Italy and was jointly organised by the Sant'Anna School of Advanced Studies (SSSA), the European University Institute (EUI) and the EUISS. 

  • Podcast season 2 logo
    15July 2020

    The EUISS' ‘What if’ podcast returns for a second season, this time looking at the foreign policy implication of the covid19 crisis.

  • Download document
    30June 2020

    This Chaillot Paper analyses the evolution of EU member states’ strategies towards sub-Saharan Africa, as well as those of global actors, against the backdrop of systemic changes, including the implications of the Covid-19 pandemic. It seeks to identify the points of convergence – and divergence – in member states’ strategies, and examines how a coherent, joint EU strategy can be achieved.

  • Download Brief
    11June 2020
    The global crisis caused by the Covid-19 outbreak has had particularly disruptive consequences for conflict-affected countries around the world. Armed groups have capitalised on the crisis, while the global distraction caused by the pandemic has made it difficult to seize opportunities for peace. This Brief analyses key repercussions in conflict-affected countries in general, and in five countries in particular: Colombia, Libya, Sudan, Ukraine and Yemen.
  • Photo of EUISS podcast recording studio
    09June 2020

    The EUISS ‘What if’ podcast is a foreign policy foresight conversation: it looks at fictional scenarios that could happen between now and the end of 2021.

  • 18May 2020

    The EUISS led a session on ‘African geopolitics in transformation: what future for peacebuilding?'

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  • 18January 2021

    On 22 January, the EUISS will live-stream '2021 What's to come?'. This event will help you think through the challenges ahead, anticipate disruptions, and be better prepared for the coming year.

  • Download Brief
    04December 2020
    Despite routine declarations that connect Sahelian terrorism to climatic and environmental factors, available scientific evidence does not allow us to conclude whether (and what) climatic factors impact (and how) conflict variability and terrorism. This Brief explores why.
  • Download document
    30June 2020

    This Chaillot Paper analyses the evolution of EU member states’ strategies towards sub-Saharan Africa, as well as those of global actors, against the backdrop of systemic changes, including the implications of the Covid-19 pandemic. It seeks to identify the points of convergence – and divergence – in member states’ strategies, and examines how a coherent, joint EU strategy can be achieved.

  • Download Brief
    11June 2020
    The global crisis caused by the Covid-19 outbreak has had particularly disruptive consequences for conflict-affected countries around the world. Armed groups have capitalised on the crisis, while the global distraction caused by the pandemic has made it difficult to seize opportunities for peace. This Brief analyses key repercussions in conflict-affected countries in general, and in five countries in particular: Colombia, Libya, Sudan, Ukraine and Yemen.
  • Download Brief
    31March 2020
    Russia is mounting a remarkable political comeback in sub-Saharan Africa through a ‘low costs, high returns and visibility’ approach. Can a coherent strategy be discerned behind this push? And how is sub-Saharan Africa reacting to Russia’s overtures and what does it mean for the EU?
  • Download document
    24January 2020
    Edited by

    According to a famous science fiction film, the future is what you make of it. This Chaillot Paper takes this quote from Back to the Future to heart, proposing 14 different portraits of the future for the year 2024.

  • Download Brief
    08October 2019
    Strengthening the resilience of the Ethiopian state and preventing an escalation of political violence are two policy priorities in view of the 2020 elections. But how can conflict risks be mitigated? And can the ambitious reform agenda be reconciled with concrete local needs and ethnic grievances?
  • Download Brief
    25September 2019
    This Brief analyses the recent civil resistance in Sudan, and explores the reasons for the resilience and longevity that have characterised it compared to previous protest movements in the country. In particular, it examines how the events in Sudan demonstrate the potential of strategic non-violence to bring about societal change, even in the face of violent repression. It concludes by outlining three scenarios for the transition process.
  • Download document
    18July 2019

    The 2019 Yearbook of European Security provides an overview of events in 2018 that were significant for European security and charts major developments in the EU’s external action and security and defence policy.

  • Download Brief
    10April 2019
    This Brief demonstrates how a ‘pivot’ to conflict prevention in foreign assistance to Mozambique is needed, adjusting international donors’ support towards more targeted conflict-prevention objectives, and balancing the need for conflict sensitivity with the imperative of effective relief and recovery interventions in the areas hit by the cyclone. But it is important to realise that the ‘prevention window’ will not remain open indefinitely, and timely action is therefore of the essence.

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  • Backdrop image
    15December 2020

    On 15 December 2020, the EUISS and the European Council’s Working Party on Africa (COAFR) held their ninth meeting to discuss Turkey’s involvement in Africa. Members of the European Council’s Working Group on Enlargement and Countries Negotiating Accession to the EU (COELA) also participated in the discussion.

  • 15October 2020

    The EUISS and the European Council’s Working Party on Africa (COAFR) held their eighth meeting and first virtual teleconference to discuss Russia in Africa. Members of the European Council’s Working Party on Eastern Europe and Central Asia (COEST) also participated to the discussion.

  • 22September 2020

    The workshop 'Debating stability in North Africa, the Sahel and Horn of Africa: How transnational dynamics and geopolitics impact governance and development' took place in the morning of September 22nd in Pisa, Italy and was jointly organised by the Sant'Anna School of Advanced Studies (SSSA), the European University Institute (EUI) and the EUISS. 

  • Podcast season 2 logo
    15July 2020

    The EUISS' ‘What if’ podcast returns for a second season, this time looking at the foreign policy implication of the covid19 crisis.

  • Photo of EUISS podcast recording studio
    09June 2020

    The EUISS ‘What if’ podcast is a foreign policy foresight conversation: it looks at fictional scenarios that could happen between now and the end of 2021.

  • 18May 2020

    The EUISS led a session on ‘African geopolitics in transformation: what future for peacebuilding?'

  • COAFR Meeting slide
    04February 2020

    The EUISS and COAFR jointly organised a seventh breakfast meeting in Brussels.

  • COAFR Meeting slide
    21January 2020

    The EUISS and the Africa Working Party of the Council of the EU (COAFR) jointly organised the sixth meeting on sub-Saharan Africa in Brussels.

  • 13December 2019

    The main objective of this Task Force, launched in Paris in November 2019, is to explore trends affecting the future of Africa in the next ten years, emphasising challenges and opportunities for policymaking.

  • Two EU Analysts in front of event banner
    27November 2019

    The EUISS, the EU Delegations to Mozambique and South Africa and ACCORD co-organised a seminar in Pretoria.

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