Thursday, August 16, 2012

Call for Papers: Trade Governance: Integrating Africa into the World Economy Through International Economic Law

A call for papers has been issued for the second African International Economic Law Network Conference, to take place March 7-8, 2013, in Johannesburg. The theme is "Trade Governance: Integrating Africa into the World Economy Through International Economic Law." Here's the call:


Whereas people in developing countries are becoming richer, about a billion others, mostly found in Africa and Central Asia, are being thrown deep into poverty. While there is a plethora of reasons for why this phenomenon is occurring, one of the key factors is isolation. Put more precisely, the argument is that poverty is rife in Africa because Africa is isolated and not integrated into the world economy. Consequently, most African countries are not able to enjoy the benefits of international economic law, whose main objective is to make people live better through open and fair markets and deeper integration into the world economy.

It is against this background that the conference seeks firstly to bring together academics, intergovernmental organisations, governments, policy makers, economists, private sector and NGOs to discuss the ways in which African states’ economies can be integrated into Africa (intraAfrica) and the world.

Secondly, it is the objective of the conference to determine the role that intergovernmental organisations, governments, private sector and NGOs can play to integrate African states into the world economy and within Africa.

To this effect, the question is – how do we insert Africa into the global economy on the key issues, that is, what are the key issues that need to be addressed for Africa’s development?

In addressing this question, what can be the role of intergovernmental organisations, states, private sector and NGOs in integrating Africa in the world economy and within Africa on the following issues:

  • Trade in goods and agriculture
  • Trade in services
  • Foreign investment
  • International finance and monetary policy
  • Governance
  • Competition law and policy
  • Intellectual property rights and technology acquisition
  • Infrastructure development and economic integration (especially transportation and energy)
  • Dispute settlement
  • Multilateral economic governance and African economic integration

Thirdly, on a comparative note, how have other regions such as Latin America and Asia, which were once isolated, become integrated into the world economy? What can be the lessons for Africa and how can such lessons be applied to Africa?

Papers discussing global economic integration and development will be welcome as well. It is planned to publish selected papers presented at the conference in a book.

Abstract Submission

The Mandela Institute at Wits School of Law and the AfIELN conference committee invite submissions of abstracts on the general theme, ‘Trade Governance’. The theme reflects the importance of integrating Africa in global trade and investment. The theme also calls for the fact that Africa’s development is tied to integration into the world economy through international economic law. Abstracts on the aforementioned issues are particularly invited.

Abstracts should be submitted by email to Julie.Dunsford@ by 7 September 2012. Submissions should include an email with the author’s name and full contact information, and a Word attachment with an anonymous abstract of no more than 300 words. Abstracts will be considered by a process of double-blind reviews and decisions on proposals will be sent by 5 October. Selected presenters will need to submit their papers (maximum 8 pages) for inclusion in the conference package by 1 February 2013.