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IGU COMMISSION ON AFRICAN STUDIES : AIM & OBJECTIVES

Aim of the IGU Commission on African Studies

The overarching aim of the IGU Commission on African Studies is to promote and provide a platform for African geographies.

Objectives

Based on the above aim, the objectives of the IGU Commission on African Studies are to:
  1. Provide a platform for academic and scientific debate for scholars in Africa and abroad on Africa-specific issues, challenges and problems
  2. Establish a channel for the international showcasing of African geographies
  3. Establish a channel for the international showcasing of geographical research and scholarship in Africa
  4. Achieve adequate representation of Africa in the IGU
  5. Stimulate, improve and/or increase participation in IGU scientific activities by Africa-based scholars and researchers
  6. Grow, nature and expand IGU scientific and other activities in Africa
It is proposed that these aims and objectives will be achievable through the establishment of IGU Commission on African Studies sessions. The sessions will be organized under the auspices of the International Geographical Congress Meetings and IGU Regional Congresses. The IGU Commission on African Studies also proposes to organize and run thematic sessions under the guidance and endorsement of the IGU.  These should also be complimented by initiatives such as symposia, workshops, fairs, etc. to be held in between IGU major events, in institutions across the continent’s major regions. For these reasons, the following is an indicative but not exhaustive list of sessions that will be organized under and/for IGC and IGU meetings:
  1. Africa and the global imaginary
  2. African population geographies
  3. African cities
  4. African geopolitical debates, configurations and reconfigurations
  5. African borderlands
  6. Africa and climate change
  7. Conflict, war and development
  8. African development challenges and trajectories
  9. Environmental issues and problems in Africa
  10. Migration in Africa
  11. Migration, development and regional integration
  12. Water resources management and governance
  13. Cartography and mapping in/of the African continent
  14. Africa and gender
  15. Industrialization and urbanization
  16. Africa, climate change and climate variations
  17. Africa and natural resource use/management
  18. African rural spaces and geographies
Further, we are fully aware that geographers could contribute to a better world, by providing solutions to the myriad problems and challenges that affect Africa today and in the future. In pursuit of this ideal, and over and above the above sessions in mainstream IGC and IGU meetings, the IGU Commission on African Studies would also organize thematic sessions that tackle current challenges in Africa. Examples of thematic sessions that this Commission proposes to organize, include, but are not limited to those that focus on:
  1. Africa’s natural heritage and diversity
  2. Africa’s rich sociocultural heritage and diversity
  3. War and conflict
  4. Disease and poverty
  5. African political and election geographies
The IGU has grown significantly since its formation. It has tackled and thus has contributed to solutions to the many problems, challenges and issues that afflict humanity today and in the future. Consistent with the role that geography can play in creating a better world, the IGU Commission on African Studies targets bringing to the center of geographical debate, African issues and challenges. Not only will this contribute to finding solutions to challenges and problems that are experienced, but will also grow the IGU in Africa as well as enrich the Union’s scientific scholarship. In this way, the African continent will fully participate and enjoy representation in the global community of geographers.
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