In the past, the world scrambled for Africa to win slaves, territory, and resources. Today, the world scrambles with Africa to do business in global markets. In Africa Consensus: New Interests, Initiatives, and Partners, Ludger Kühnhardt argues that new African politics, African regional institutions, and global demand for partnerships for trade and security will lead the continent to new relationships with the United States, the European Union, China, India, Brazil, and other emerging economies.

Kühnhardt reviews the history of Africa’s international status and employs the rising African Union’s own identified “intervention areas” to analyze challenges and possibilities: peace and security; development, integration, and cooperation; shared values; and institution- and capacity-building.

Ludger Kühnhardt is director of the Center for European Integration Studies and professor of political science at the University of Bonn, Germany. He was a public policy scholar at the Wilson Center in 2012.

A book launch was held at the Wilson Center on June 16, 2014, with the support of the Global Europe Program.


List of Tables and Figures

Introduction: From Scramble to Partnership—The Changing Place of Africa in World Affairs

1. The Global Turn and Its Meaning for Africa

2. Past Scrambles for Africa: Lessons Learned

3. A New African Beginning

4. Strategic Pillar: Peace and Security

5. Strategic Pillar: Development, Integration, and Cooperation

6. Strategic Pillar: Shared Values

7. Strategic Pillar: Institution-Building and Capacity-Building

8. Africa Consensus: A New Compact for a Common Age

About the Author


“By linking Africa’s current display of economic dynamism ... to global changes that are underway, Kühnhardt revisits and goes beyond major historical themes and narratives. In the process, he elevates the continent as a global agenda-setting actor.”—Francis A. Kornegay, Senior Research Fellow, Institute of Global Dialogue, University of South Africa

Africa Consensus is the rare book that treats Africa as the complex region that it is. Kühnhardt is experienced enough to put that complexity front and center ... and his distillations are nuanced enough to successfully describe a continent that is transforming before our very eyes and playing an ever-growing role in all aspects of the global economy and community. Students of Africa have a new place to begin.”—K. Y. Amoako, President and Founder, African Center for Economic Transformation