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Working Group in African Political Economy (WGAPE) Fall 2017

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The Working Group in African Political Economy (WGAPE) brings together faculty and advanced graduate students in Economics and Political Science who combine field research experience in Africa with training in political economy methods.  The group has met semi-annually to discuss the work-in-progress of its core members and invited guests. It is co-led by Daniel Posner (Department of Political Science, UCLA), Edward Miguel (Department of Economics, UC Berkeley), and Brian Dillon (Evans School of Public Policy & Governance, University of Washington).

Meeting Format

The meeting will begin on Friday mid-day, November 17th, and end mid-day on Saturday, November 18th. The meeting will be built around in-depth discussions of around seven to eight papers that are pre-circulated and expected to be read in advance (see an archive of papers from past WGAPE meetings). Each submission that is selected will receive a one-hour discussion slot at the meeting. Presenters provide little more than a few brief, orienting comments before the floor is opened for discussion.

Submission Categories

We invite paper and research design submissions that reflect WGAPE’s broad research agenda on the political economy of African development, including ethnic politics, civil conflict and violence, decentralization and democratization, corruption, local governance, public economics, and other related topics. Experimental research with field data will be given priority. Graduate students and junior faculty are particularly encouraged to apply. WGAPE provides full funding for the cost of airfare, accommodations and meals for presenters. Due to the regional nature of the meeting, we will prioritize attendees based in the Western U.S. and Canada. Potential applicants currently based outside North America are encouraged to apply to the upcoming international WGAPE meeting hosted by NYU - Abu Dhabi. A call for that conference will be circulated soon.

We invite submissions in two categories:

1)    Paper submissions. These submissions can be works-in-progress. Only complete drafts are given consideration.

2)     Research design submissions. These submissions should describe a fully planned research study on topics relevant to WGAPE, as listed above. A suggested format for these submissions is the Pre-Analysis Plan; please find a template at this link.

The review committee will evaluate papers based on the quality of their design and execution, their fit with WGAPE’s traditional topics of interest, and their ability to generate productive discussion at the meeting.

To Apply

All submissions must include:

a)    Paper submission or Research Design in PDF or Word format.

b)    Latest Curriculum Vitae with contact information, including country of current location.

Papers must be submitted to by October 1st, 2017.


Non-presenters who do not require accommodation or travel funding are welcome to attend the meeting as space permits. In the case that there are available funds, WGAPE may be able to fund non-presenters’ travel. We ask that you please email the address listed below with your name, institution, and days you would like to attend and we will confirm whether or not we can accommodate you or potentially fund your travel. All attendees, including non-presenters, are expected to read the papers and research designs in advance.

Further Inquiries

Please contact Alex Dobyan at with any further questions.  

Date and Time

Nov 17, 2017 — Nov 18, 2017


University of British Columbia

Vancouver, BC



Register for Working Group in African Political Economy (WGAPE) Fall 2017 now!