Action for Empowerment and Accountability (A4EA) is an international research programme which explores how social and political action can contribute to empowerment and accountability in fragile, conflict, and violent settings, with a particular focus on Egypt, Mozambique, Myanmar, Nigeria and Pakistan.
While a great deal has been written recently on approaches to empowerment and accountability, many of the lessons and approaches have been drawn from relatively stable, and democratic settings. However, an estimated two billion people currently live in countries where these conditions do not exist and their ability to live safe and fulfilling lives is affected by war, political instability and weak or repressive governments on a daily basis. By 2030, this number is estimated to roughly double, rising to almost four billion.
About the A4EA programme
The A4EA programme is structured in two research phases, with a synthesis period at the end of each phase:
- Phase 1 (April 2016 – December 2018): research focused on Egypt, Mozambique, Myanmar, Nigeria and Pakistan, and looked at 1) Meanings and expressions of empowerment and accountability; 2) Pathways to accountability bargains; 3) Women’s social and political action; and 4) the role of external actors, particularly donors.
- Synthesising Phase 1 (Jan 2019 – March 2019)
- Phase 2 (April 2019 – December 2020): Building on findings from the first phase, Phase 2 will look at 1) when, why and how do marginalised citizens choose to strategically avoid direct interactions with authorities and work ‘beneath the radar’? 2) struggles over energy access 3) under what conditions does women’s social and political action contribute to the strengthening of women’s empowerment and lead to accountability outcomes that promote gender equity? and 4) the theory and practice of donor action in enabling social and political action for empowerment and accountability
- Synthesising Phase 2 and programme conclusion (Jan 2021 – March 2021)
The programme is led by IDS and is being implemented by a consortium which also includes: the Accountability Research Center (USA), the Collective for Social Science Research (Pakistan), the Institute of Development and Economic Alternatives (Pakistan), Itad (UK), Oxfam (GB and Myanmar), and the Partnership for African Social and Governance Research (Kenya).
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