As part of the China in Africa workshop, this lecture will be given by a leading expert on the topic, Dr Deborah Bräutigam.
Is China building a new empire in rural Africa? Few development topics are as controversial and emotionally charged as the belief that the Chinese government is aggressively buying up huge tracts of prime African land to grow food to ship back to China. In Will Africa Feed China? Deborah Bräutigam, one of the world’s leading experts on China and Africa, probes the myths and realities behind the media headlines.
Chinese farming investments are in fact surprisingly limited, and land acquisitions modest. Defying expectations, China actually exports more food to Africa than it imports. Why is the reality of Chinese investment so different from the headlines? Is this picture likely to change? What role will China play as rural Africa moves from subsistence to commercial agriculture, and China builds a portfolio of tools to allow its agribusiness firms to “go global”?
Will Africa Feed China? answers these questions as it sheds new light on China’s evolving global quest for food security and Africa’s possibilities for structural transformation.
Dr. Deborah Bräutigam is the Bernard L. Schwartz Professor of Political Economy, Director of the International Development Program, and Director of the China Africa Research Initiative at Johns Hopkins University’s School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS). Her most recent books include The Dragon’s Gift: The Real Story of China in Africa (OUP, 2010) and Will Africa Feed China? (OUP, 2015). Before joining SAIS in 2012, she taught at Columbia University and American University. Dr. Bräutigam’s teaching and research focus on international development strategies, governance, and foreign aid. She has twice won the Fulbright research award and is a recipient of fellowships from the Council on Foreign Relations, the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, and research grants from the UK Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) and the UK Centre for Economic Policy and Research (CEPR). She has served as a consultant for Transparency International, the United Nations, the World Bank, DFID, GIZ, DANIDA, the African Development Bank, and USAID, and has provided commentary to the Financial Times, the New York Times, the Guardian, CNN, NPR, Al-Jazeera, VOA, CCTV, and MSNBC. Dr. Bräutigam has been a visiting scholar at the World Bank, a senior research fellow at the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI), and advised more than a dozen governments on China-Africa relations. Her Ph.D. is from the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy, Tufts University.
Chair: Carlos Oya