Optional course: Governing Africa's natural resources

Course content

If economic growth, poverty reduction and industrial development are top priorities for most African countries, why should local communities, NGO's, policy makers in African government and donor countries worry about governing natural resources? The answer is simple: natural resources provide soil to grow food, and water for drinking, irrigation etc. Forests and rivers provide food to eat or export and raw materials for a wide range of industries. In many African countries, natural landscapes and wildlife reserves are major factors in attracting tourism. So governing natural resources is about safeguarding food, livelihoods, export opportunities, recreation etc.

The primary objectives of this course are as follows: (1) Debating governance of natural resources at and between local, national, and international levels; (2) develop understanding of key concepts including theories related to governing natural resources; and (3) Discuss specific cases from Africa related to utilization and/or conservation of Africa's natural resources.

Key elements in this course will be:

  • critically discuss actors in Africa's development and the role they are playing in governing natural resources in Africa.
  • Issues related to utilization of natural resources linked to discussion about scarcity and abundance.
  • Debating conservation in Africa – related to the role of state, marked and civil society.
  • Discuss impact and coping strategies related to climate change in Africa. 
Education

MA programme in African Studies

Learning outcome

The aim is for the student to acquire the following qualifications:

  • Ability to select a relevant sub-topic within the overall focus area of governing Africa's natural resources. The sub-topic should be geared towards specific conditions related to Africa.
  • Ability to independently and critically select relevant literature on the sub-topic related to governance of natural resources
  • Ability to independently and critically analyse the sub-topic in question and to place it within the overall context of governing Africa's natural resources.

This course is about learning rather than teaching. All members of the class are expected to show genuine commitment to maximizing the return from the time invested in the class. Reading course literature will be expected and the class sessions will build on this material.
The course will consist of a combination of lectures and workshop-like activities with active student participation and presentations by a number of external lecturers including guests from the private sector, NGOs and researchers.

ECTS
7,5 ECTS
Type of assessment
Written assignment
Marking scale
7-point grading scale
Censorship form
External censorship
Criteria for exam assessment

The grade of 12 is given at the exam when the student demonstrates:

  • Confident ability to identify and define a sub-topic and an issue of relevance to the overall theme of the optional course.
  • Confident ability to independently and critically select relevant literature on the sub-topic to be studied.
  • Confident ability to independently and critically analyse the sub-topic in question and the chosen literature.
  • Confident ability to conduct an interdisciplinary analysis of the sub-topic in question and to place it within the overall theme of the optional course in question.
  • Confident ability to communicate academic material in a clear, concise and well-argued manner.

Single subject courses (day)

  • Category
  • Hours
  • Class Instruction
  • 28
  • English
  • 28