Besides exclusively economic issues, the R4D “The Developmental State Strikes Back?” research project is particularly interested in social policies implemented by African states on the road to the emergence. This interest led two doctoral students to work, in a comparative approach, on the thematic of the social housing:
“Social and economic housing policy in Côte d’Ivoire since 2011: between social policy and a liberal approach to economics”
Abstract: Presented as part of Alassane Ouattara’s 2011 political agenda, the presidential program on social housing in Côte d’Ivoire fits within the administration’s emergence policy and is defined within a larger social protection policy. The state’s willingness to invest heavily in its social programs illustrates a strategic return to government investment in social housing, this time not as a direct investor as was the case in the 1970s and 1980s, but rather as a regulator of the housing market. Instead of state sponsorship of social housing, this time around low-income housing policy is developed as a public-private partnership with public bids to attract a constellation of national and foreign real estate developers from the private sector. Four years after the implementation of this public policy, there are shortcomings between the expected results of the program and the achievements observed thus far. Using these shortcomings as a starting point, this doctoral research examines the intersection between the state’s social housing policy within the dynamics of an emerging economy as envisioned by the Ouattara administration for the year 2020. This analysis will also reflect on the developmental state. This sociology of social housing policy is based on a qualitative approach that combines various sources of information and uses different methods of data collection.
“The Process of Development of the Cameroonian State: A modeling with hybrid dimensions? Socio-political analysis of the case of social housing projects”
By Alvin ATEBA
Abstract: Alvin ATEBA is preparing a PhD thesis entitled: “The process of development of the State of Cameroon, a modeling with hybrid trend? Socio-political analysis of the case of social housing projects “. This work is taking place in the Cameroonian economic context related to the infrastructural development known as “structuring projects”, and in an international context linked to the economic emergence of China, at the end of the Washington consensus, at the beginning of the Beijing consensus, and finally Cameroon’s renewed autonomy since the end of structural adjustment in 2006. The case study, as the title indicates, concerns building projects of social housing. Alvin ATEBA assumes that development policies in Cameroon seem to be hybrid in the sense that development infrastructure projects are conceptualized in a self-centered structuralist posture, but in their implementation, seem to adopt a liberal stance particularly in the distribution of market shares. In a socio-political and strategic approach, he analyzes the tendency towards the hybridization of the economy and development that seems to adopt the Cameroonian government, which since independence, with the political ideas of “planned liberalism” or “communitarian liberalism”, gives the impression of “shunning” philosophically between structuralism and liberalism. The aim of the research is to see how the both structuralist and liberal models are used simultaneously, depending on the contextual opportunities available to a state, to play strategically, and secure its gains, by a planned “autocentration” of its development prospects (structuralism), and an opening of its projects to the best offerers in the market of its development (liberalism). The scientific positions on the hybridization of economic and development policies, already confirmed on cases elsewhere, are put back to discussion, based on the peculiarities that the case of Cameroon allows to discover.