The International Institute for the Advanced Study of Cultures, Institutions and Economic Enterprise (IIAS) has been established in Accra, Ghana,to pursue multi-disciplinary research into African cultures, institutions (legal, social, cultural, political, economic, health), enterprise and everyday life as a platform for institutional reform and the creation of more supple structures to meet new challenges. Its quest is to develop African solutions to African problems, informed by current international scholarship, best policy practices, and emerging out of dialogue between academic researchers, policy makers, and government officials.
The Institute believes the desirable goals of democracy and economic development can be pursued within the framework of indigenous cultures, as has been demonstrated by Japan and the Asian Tigers. Cultural alienation should not be the price of a better standard of living, and culture is not an albatross in the quest for development. Though located in Ghana, IIAS views itself as a sub-regional, continental and international body. IIAS is organized around nine core fellows with established careers in history, economics, traditional governance, gender and policy studies, cultural and literary studies, law, genocide and human rights. Its offices and spacious conference room at the International House, at the University of Ghana campus, enables close relations with the University of Ghana though IIAS is autonomous. The Institute will affiliate scholars from outside of Ghana in the category of visiting fellows, who might work independently or collaboratively with the Institute’s core fellows, and provide internships for Ghanaians and non-Ghanaians.
Objectives of the Institute
Initiating and facilitating original research and conducting collaborative research with Ghanaian and non-Ghanaian scholars and institutions.
Consultancies for both government and non-government bodies.
Academic publishing: The institute will sponsor a monograph series on Economy and Society in West Africa with the senior fellows of the Institute serving as editors. Monographs will be solicited from within the West African sub-region to be co-published in Ghana, the United Kingdom and the United States in association with established academic presses. The goal is to uncover solid academic work that would otherwise go unpublished and to give West African scholarship international attention.
The Institute will create and maintain a research and reference library that will be open to the public.
The Institute will use its convening power to assist in the reform and strengthening of tertiary institutions.
Dissemination: The institute will sponsor public lectures, workshops, symposia, round-table and panel discussions on relevant topical issues for the information of the general public. These will be hosted at the Institute’s facilities or elsewhere when necessary and in conjunction with the Ghanaian media. Occasional papers will be published by the Institute, which will also maintain an electronic newsletter and a website listing the Institute’s activities.