Global Uncertainties: Security in an Africa of Networked, Multi-Level Governance

How individuals, communities and nation states form their ideas and beliefs about security and insecurity will form the basis of this project, one of 14 fellowships funded by the ESRC/ AHRC as part of the wider RCUK Global Uncertainties Programme.

The programme is built on the observation that all governance (especially in Africa) is multi-levelled and networked - from the village to the international organisation, and well beyond what is specified in formal government structures.

The objective of the research is the identification of institutional strategies for recovering the multiple aspects of human securityin countries that have been fractured by violent conflict.

Programme Researchers

  • David K. Leonard (director)
  • Jeremy Allouche
  • Niagale Bagayoko-Penone
  • Peter Houtzager
  • Sidibe Kalilou
  • Freida M'Cormack
  • Ferdinand Mugumo Mushi
  • Thierry Nlandu
  • Mohamed Samantar
  • Anna Schmidt
  • James Vincent
  • Patrick Zadi Zad 

Focus countries

Democratic Republic of Congo, Ivory Coast, Kenya, Mali, Mozambique, Nigeria, Sierra Leone, and Somalia (Somaliland and Puntland).

Key Questions the programme seeks to answer

  1. How do conflict management institutions evolve under the stress of prolonged violent conflict and how can they best contribute to the recovery of human security? Institutions under consideration include elections, elected and traditional local government, local courts, the police, and the armed services.
  2. What are the networks of relationships withinand between states, communities, NGOs, international organisations, and international donors for the management and resolution of intrastate conflictsand how might their effectiveness be improved?

Key contact

Photo of David Leonard


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Photo of Jeremy Allouche, IDS research fellow

T: +44 (0)1273 915834


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IDS staff or research student


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Piecing it Together Post-conflict Security in an Africa of Networked, Multilevel Governance

In 'Piecing it Together: Post-Conflict Security in an Africa of Networked, Multilevel Governance' (2013)
Leonard, D.

Hybrid Security Orders in Sub-Saharan Africa

IDS Bulletin 43.4 (2012)
Bagayoko, N. assisted by M'Cormack, F.I.

Insecurity and Local Governance in Congo’s South Kivu

IDS Research Report 74 (2012)
Ferdinand Mugumo Mushi

Becoming and Remaining a 'Force for Good': Reforming the Police in Post-conflict Sierra Leone

IDS Research Report 70 (2011)
Charley, J.P.C. and M’Cormack, F.I.

Puntland and the Quandary of Somali Piracy

Africa Policy Journal (2011)
Samantar, M. and Leonard, D.

What does the Somali Experience teach us about the Social Contract and the State

Development and Change 42.2 (2011)
Leonard, D. and Samantar, M.

Elections and Conflict Resolution in Africa

In 'When Elephants Fight: Preventing and Resolving Election-Related Conflicts in Africa' (2011)
Matlosa, M., Khadiagala, G.M. and Shale, V.

Security Systems in Francophone Africa

IDS Research Report 64 (2010)
Bagayoko, N.

The Political Economy of Democratisation in Sierra Leone: Reflections on the Elections of 2007 and 2008

Journal of African Elections 8.1 (2009)
Leonard, D., Pitso, T. and Schmidt, A.

The Political and Institutional Context of the 2007 Kenyan Elections and Reforms Needed for the Future

Journal of African Elections 8.1 (2009)
Leonard, D., Odhiambo, F. and George, K.

Nigerian Elections Since 1999: What Does Democracy Mean?

Journal of African Elections 8.1 (2009)
Egwu, S., Leonard, D. and Matlosa, K.

Essays on Transforming Security and Development in an Unequal World

IDS Working Paper 322 (2009)
Bagayoko, N. and McLean Hilker, L.

Will the Global Financial Crisis Change the Development Paradigm?

IDS In Focus Policy Briefing 7.10 (2009)
McCulloch, N., Schmidt, A. and Sumner, A.
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Partner organisations


Partner researchers

Niagale Bagayoko