chapter  18
18 Pages

Good governance and growth in Africa: What can we learn from Tanzania?


Popular struggles for social justice in Africa and elsewhere are often couched in terms of demands for better governance. But the new consensus over ‘good governance’ supported by international financial institutions represents a much narrower programme of reform based on neoclassical economic theory. This agenda focuses on developing governance attributes in Africa that are theoretically supposed to enhance growth by making markets more efficient. Some of these governance capabilities (such as measures to improve government accountability or lower corruption) appear to coincide with goals supported by social justice movements for better governance. But the reasons for supporting these are very different in the official good governance agenda, and the way they are supported can make the achievement of social goals even more difficult. This chapter outlines the theoretical and methodological basis of the good governance agenda and sets out an alternative understanding of the links between growth and governance in Africa.