Africa Center Special Report No. 1

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Africa and the Arab Spring: A New Era of Democratic Expectations

By Africa Center for Strategic Studies

November 30, 2011

UN Photo/Albert Gonzalez Farran

Efforts to circumvent presidential term limits in Burundi, the Republic of Congo, and Rwanda and the persistence of “big-man” politics have renewed questions over the viability of democratic governance models in Africa. These developments have overshadowed a deepening institutionalization of democratic processes in Africa over the past decade. The Arab Spring, likewise, sparked a broader debate about the legitimate claims on authority across the continent. These crosscurrents reflect an ongoing struggle for governance norms in Africa that will require active engagement from African reformers and international partners to sustain Africa’s democratic trajectory.

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Publication Type: Special Reports