Subscribe to E-Bulletin Donate to CEGA

Working Group in African Political Economy (WGAPE) Spring 2017


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. It is co-led by Brian Dillon (Evans School of Public Affairs, University of Washington), Edward Miguel (Department of Economics, UC Berkeley), and Daniel Posner (Department of Political Science, UCLA)

The call for papers and research designs is for the WGAPE Spring National Meeting, to be held June 5-6, 2017 at the University of California-Berkeley.

Sessions are built around in-depth discussions of papers that are circulated and expected to be read in advance (see an archive of papers from past WGAPE meetings). Presenters provide little more than a few brief, orienting comments before the floor is opened for discussion. WGAPE is more a forum for presenting work in progress than polished, finished projects and provides an unparalleled opportunity for useful feedback. 

Paper submissions and research designs must reflect WGAPE’s broad research agenda on core issues within the political economy of African development, including ethnic politics, civil conflict and violence, decentralization and democratization, and corruption and local governance. Graduate students are particularly encouraged to apply and choice of papers will be based on both paper submissions and extended abstracts.  Papers should be at a stage where commentary would be useful; polished, finished papers that would not benefit from feedback are discouraged for submission. Research designs are often in the style of pre-analysis plans, a useful tool to describe the study design, outline hypotheses, specify variable construction, and pre-specify the analysis of data.

  • Papers and Research Designs must be uploaded to by 11:59pm PT on March 24, 2017.
  • Successful applicants will be notified by April 10, 2017 and will be invited to attend the full symposium. WGAPE will cover the cost of economy travel, accommodation and dining (capped). 

For further information, please contact Corinne Cooper at Non-presenters who do not require accommodation or travel funding are welcome to attend the meeting as space permits. We ask that you please email with your name, institution, and days you would like to attend and we will confirm whether or not we can accommodate. 

PLEASE NOTE: For the 2017 WGAPE Annual Meeting, a select subgroup of participants from Africa-based institutions will be invited to spend one week at UC Berkeley, to participate in WGAPE, an orientation and training workshop, and the Annual Bank Conference on Africa (ABCA) hosted by UC Berkeley and the World Bank on June 1-2. This opporunity is limited to graduate students, post-docs, and junior faculty working in political economy who either a) currently hold a faculty or research position at an African institution, b) received or are actively pursuing a graduate degree at an African institution, or c) received an undergraduate degree from an African institution and are currently in graduate school elsewhere. Acceptance to attend the special sessions DOES NOT guarantee acceptance of a paper/RD for the 2017 WGAPE Annual Meeting. More information on that opportunity can be found here


Date and Time

Jun 5, 2017 — Jun 6, 2017


University of California-Berkeley

Martin Luther King Jr. Student Union

Tilden Room (5th Floor)


Monday, June 5, 2017
Martin Luther King, Jr. Student Union
Tilden Room (5th floor)

11:30-12:00am Lunch
12:30-1:00pm “Speed Dating” Networking Activity
1:00-2:00pm Can Information Outreach Increase Participation in Community-Driven Development? A Field Experiment near Bwindi National Park, Uganda
Mark Buntaine, UC Santa Barbara
2:00-3:00pm: Overcoming Psychological Barriers to Political Accountability
Jessica Gottlieb, Texas A&M University
3:00-3:30pm Coffee and “Speed Dating”
3:30-4:30pm Ancestral Tradition and Entrepreneurial Attitude: Evidence from the Bamileke
Gaétan Nandong, African School of Economics
4:30-5:30pm Building State and Citizen: Experimental Evidence from a Tax Campaign in Congo
Jonathan Weigel, Harvard University
5:30pm Happy hour (Cornerstone)
7:30pm: Dinner (Finfine)

Tuesday, June 6, 2017
Martin Luther King, Jr. Student Union
Tilden Room (5th floor)

8:30-9:00am: Breakfast
9:00-10:00am: Media and Motivation: The Effect of Performance Pay on Writers and Content
Emilia Tjernström, University of Wisconsin-Madison
10:00-11:00am: Social Connections and Primary Health Care: Evidence from Kenya
Josephine Gatua, University of Gothenburg
11:00-11:30am: Coffee
11:30am-12:30pm The Empty Panorama: The Origins of Spatial Inequality in Africa
Yannick Pengl, ETH Zurich
12:30-1:30pm Lunch


East African Social Science Translation (EASST), William and Flora Hewlett Foundation