The Future Is African

Projections show that by 2050, Africa’s population will double. By 2100, one in three people on Earth will be African. This means that, by the end of the century, sub-Saharan Africa—which already has an extraordinarily young population—will be home to almost half of the young people in the world. In this episode, two experts examine whether Africa’s youth boom will be a blessing or a curse.

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Host
  • Gabrielle Sierra
    Director, Podcasting
Episode Guests
  • Michelle Gavin
    Ralph Bunche Senior Fellow for Africa Policy Studies
  • John Githongo
    Inuka Kenya Trust, CEO

Show Notes

In most African countries, 70 percent or more of the population is under the age of thirty, a youth bulge that is projected to accelerate for decades to come. Some experts feel that if properly harnessed, the youth boom could propel the continent to new levels of economic and geopolitical power. Others suggest that without innovation, rapid development, and massive job creation, it could instead lead to worse levels of poverty, unemployment, and conflict. In the meantime, countries such as China are moving quickly to invest in Africa’s future, while the United States and other Western nations have taken more passive roles.

 

From CFR

 

Nigeria and the Nation-State, John Campbell

 

China in Africa,” Eleanor Albert

 

Ethiopia: East Africa’s Emerging Giant,” Claire Felter

 

A Conversation with Dr. K.Y. Amoako on the Future of African Development,” Michelle Gavin

 

Amid Major Transformations, Africa Will Play an Important Role in Shaping the Future,” Michelle Gavin

 

The United States and Europe Should Work Together to Promote a Prosperous Africa,” Michelle Gavin

 

How to Think About Africa’s ‘Rising Middle Class’ Amid COVID-19,” John Campbell

 

From John Githongo

 

Africa’s Generational War,” Foreign Policy

 

Read More

 

Charts of the Week: Africa’s changing demographics,” Brookings Institution

 

Youth Empowerment,” United Nations Office of the Special Advisor on Africa 

 

Africa’s Population Will Double by 2050,” Economist

 

Kenya’s changing population captured in 100 photos,” BBC

 

Africa 2050: Demographic Truth and Consequences,” Hoover Institution 

 

Population Facts, December 2019 [PDF],” United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs

 

Africa’s population boom: burden or opportunity?,” Institute for Security Studies

 

China Africa Research Initiative, Johns Hopkins University

 

Watch or Listen

 

How Africa’s population boom is changing our world,” BBC

 

Yes She Can, with Candice Chirwa,” Africa Matters

 

How Will a Population Boom Change Africa?,” BBC’s The Inquiry


 
 

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