Panel 17

Grand Challenges in Promoting Developmental Mobility in Africa

Panel organiser: Leonid L. Fituni, DSc. Corresponding Member of RAS. Deputy Director Institute for African Studies, Director, Centre for Strategic and Global Studies, Russian Academy of Sciences.


The global development in the 21st century encounters so called “Grand Challenges”, i.e. a combination of problems, risks and opportunities, important factors and long-term trends that will determine the future of world economy and politics, global agenda and development of different nations and regions for the decades to come. There are number of such Grand Challenges, including but not limited to: anthropogenic impact on the environment, new demographic and epidemiological transitions, social stratification, underperformance and diminishing controllability of complex socio-technical systems. In Africa Grand Challenges are accompanied by a sophisticated palette of national and regional problems, including poverty, underdeveloped human capital, technological dependence, etc. Peculiar to the continent, is the spatial factor, which determines specific character of logistics, regional connectivity and resources mobility and allocation. Solutions for the Grand Challenges can’t be found within the existing development paradigm. This “irresolvable” contradiction can only be surpassed by science, technology and innovation, which are able to provide ingenious solutions, including ones that are not directly connected with the challenges faced nowadays. The panel seeks to address a number of key issues relating to mobility and scientific-technological progress in the broad context of African development. The discussion properly comprehends relevant social, economic and political considerations. The panel focuses on a variety of broad areas: the institutions and instruments of developmental mobility against the backdrop of the Grand Challenges.


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