Policy Forum

Let Failing African Governments Collapse: A Radical Solution to Underdevelopment

Watch the Event
Date and Time
April 2, 2008 12 - 1:30 PM EDT

Join the conversation on Twitter using #CatoEvents. Follow @CatoEvents on Twitter to get future event updates, live streams, and videos from the Cato Institute. If you have questions or need assistance registering for the event, please email our staff at events@​cato.​org.

Many African states have been addicted to Western aid for decades. Unfortunately, Africa as a whole has stagnated and some African countries are poorer today then they were in the 1960s. In recent years, advocates of foreign aid have called for making aid more efficient, but that may be easier said than done. The problem, some critics argue, is that aid supports predatory governments and perpetuates institutions that are alien to Africa. The “modern” state, characterized by Western‐​style elections and bureaucracies, may be ill‐​suited to African conditions. Failing governments should be allowed to collapse and be replaced by institutions indigenous to Africa. Our panel will discuss the likely consequences of ending aid and consider subsequent institutional developments.

Featuring: Edward N. Luttwak, Senior Associate, Center for Strategic and International Studies; George Ayittey, Professor of Economics, American University; and Mauro De Lorenzo, Resident Fellow, American Enterprise Institute. Moderated by Marian Tupy, Policy Analyst, Cato Institute.