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Request for Africa-Based Participants

Working Group in African Political Economy (WGAPE) 

2019 Annual Meeting: July 10-12, 2019 at UCT

Deadline for Submission: 11:59pm Pacific Time on Wednesday, March 27th, 2019

WGAPE Meeting: July 10-12, 2019 at University of Cape Town

Please note that this application is for participants only. If you would like your paper or research design considered, please apply here: https://cega.submittable.com/submit/135103/2019-request-for-papers-wgape-university-of-cape-town. If you would like to be considered for both categories (presenter and participant),  please fill out both applications.


The Working Group in African Political Economy (WGAPE) brings together faculty and advanced graduate students in Economics and Political Science who combine field research experience in Africa with training in political economy methods. The group has met semi-annually to discuss the in-progress work of its core members and invited guests since 2002. It is co-led by Daniel Posner (Political Science, UCLA), Edward Miguel (Economics, UC Berkeley), Brian Dillon (Dyson School of Applied Economics and Management, Cornell), and Amanda Robinson (Political Science, Ohio State University). Our first annual meeting hosted in Africa will take place at the University of Cape Town on the morning of July 10 through the afternoon of July 12.  

Meeting Information

WGAPE meetings center on research discussion sessions rather than presentations. Papers are circulated and expected to be read in advance by all participants. Presenters provide brief, orienting comments before the floor is opened for an hour-long discussion of each paper or research design. WGAPE accepts working papers and research designs (see an archive of papers from past WGAPE meetings here).  

For the 2019 WGAPE Annual Meeting, a select subgroup of participants from Africa-based institutions will be invited to UCT to participate in WGAPE. This will involve reading the papers prior to the meetings,  providing feedback to presenters on their papers during the meetings, as well as participating in additional networking events and research methods trainings. This fully funded opportunity is limited to graduate students, post-docs, and junior faculty working in political economy or development who either a) currently hold a faculty or research position at an African institution, b) received or are actively pursuing a graduate degree at an African institution, or c) received an undergraduate degree from an African institution and are currently in graduate school elsewhere. 

Selected participants will arrive in Cape Town by July 9, and may also be invited to arrive a day earlier to assist with pre-meeting programming (workshops, networking opportunities with local faculty and graduate students, and training on research methods). Because the WGAPE format revolves around in-depth discussions rather than presentations, authors of selected papers are expected to read the papers in advance and participate in the full July 10-12 meeting. 

This is an excellent opportunity for junior researchers to network with more senior faculty from the US and Africa, engage with new ideas on cutting edge research on African Political Eocnomy 

Participant costs and travel:

With assistance from the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation, WGAPE will provide funding for travel, accommodation, and related expenses for selected participants.

PLEASE NOTE: Scholars who meet the criteria are invited and encouraged to apply for both this opportunity and to submit papers/research designs to the 2019 WGAPE Annual Meeting Request for Papers. A successful application to attend the meeting does not guarantee acceptance of a paper or research design for the workshop. 

Desired Qualifications

We seek the following qualities in meeting attendees:

  1. Experience conducting research on topics that reflect WGAPE’s broad research agenda on the political economy of African development, including ethnic politics, civil conflict and violence, decentralization and democratization, corruption, local governance, public economics, and other related topics;
  2. Demonstrated experience in empirical social science research using experimental or quasi-experimental methods and the collection of original data;
  3. Strong desire to actively participate in in-person discussions of African research topics with top scholars from around the world.

Submit your Application

Submissions must include:

  • Up-to-date Curriculum Vitae or Resume with contact information, including country of current location
  • A paragraph describing your research interests and the methods you use (or plan to use) for your research
  • A paragraph describing why you would like to attend WGAPE and what you hope to gain from it

To submit your materials: Please fill out the fields below to apply by 11:59pm PT on March 27th, 2019. 

Successful applicants will be notified within a few weeks and will be expected to attend the full 3-day workshop

To be considered as a presenter, please submit your materials to the following URL by 11:59pm PT on March 27, 2019: https://cega.submittable.com/submit/135103/2019-request-for-papers-wgape-university-of-cape-town

For further information, please contact wgapeworkshop@gmail.com.