elites, production and poverty

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Elites, production and poverty: a comparative study

Elites, production and poverty is a collaborative research program launched in 2008. It brings together research institutions and universities in Bangladesh, Denmark, Ghana, Mozambique, Tanzania and Uganda and is funded by the Danish Consultative Research Committee for Development Research. The program is coordinated by the Danish Institute for International Studies, Copenhagen, and runs until the end of 2011.

Research program
Elites have power. Politics is an inherently centralized form of decision making. It involves mutual adjustments, coalition building and conflicts within and between elite groups. In contrast, the influence of civil society groups in poor countries is often overrated and indirect, and should be viewed through the lens of elite politics. Consequently, pro-poor growth policies are unlikely to succeed without elite support. The programme thus focuses on the roles of elites in formulating and implementing productive sector initiatives that promote economic growth and reduce poverty. Case studies cover initiatives in agriculture, agro-processing, fisheries, and manufacturing that feature prominently in the respective countries.

Research outputs

  • Analyses of the political economy of policy formulation and implementation in general, and in selected cases of productive sector initiatives in particular, in five country studies;
  • Contributions to better theoretical and operational understanding of the role of elites and the factors which affect how productive sector initiatives are designed and succeed or fail;
  • Stimulating debate about what is pro-poor economic growth and what approaches to supporting productive sectors have the greatest impact on long term poverty reduction.
Participating Research Institutions include:
SOAS London for Bangladesh; Danish Institute for International Studies, Denmark; Aarhus University, Denmark; Institute for Democratic Governance, Ghana; Makerere University, Uganda; Centre for Democracy and Development Studies, Mozambique; and Research on Poverty Alleviation (REPOA), Tanzania.



Updated: 09/10/12