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China’s presence in Africa – a threat or opportunity?

Professor Raphael Kaplinsky

Professor Raphael Kaplinsky Open University

Press release issued: 1 December 2011

China’s growing economy and its presence in Africa will be the focus of a public lecture taking place at Bristol University on Monday [5 December].

Distinguished researcher Professor Raphael Kaplinsky, Professor of International Development at Development Policy and Practice at the Open University, will examine how China – soon to have the world’s largest economy – has a growing presence in Africa and the impact this will have globally.

He will address the nature of the resulting growth in Africa, looking at who the major beneficiaries and losers are likely to be and what political structures will be reinforced or undermined.

The lecture is part of this year’s Colston Research Society Symposium, a two-day meeting at the University which will bring together a range of experts working at the forefront of many areas of international development and globalisation.

The lecture is sponsored by the Colston Research Society and organised by the Public and Ceremonial Events Office in association with the School of Sociology, Politics and International Studies (SPAIS).

  • The lecture takes place on Monday, 5 December, in the Reception Room, Wills Memorial Building, at 6 pm.  Admission is free and no booking is required.

Professor Kaplinsky’s research focuses on globalisation, innovation, industrialisation and technology – fields in which he’s published extensively.

He has also advised governments, UN organisations and firms on a range of development-related issues. In the late 1990s, Professor Kaplinsky played a leading role in developing a global network of researchers focusing on global value chains. Since 2005 he has made a similar contribution to the development of a global network of researchers, focusing on the impact of China and India on developing countries.

His most recent book, published in November, is entitled How China Disrupted Global Commodities: The Reshaping of the World’s Resource Sector. This will be followed next year by a volume called Making the Most of Commodities, which focuses on the impact of China’s thirst for commodities on industrial development in sub-Saharan Africa.

Further information

The Colston Research Society was founded in 1899 as the ‘University College Colston Society’, by a body of Bristol citizens who wished to assist the University College. From 1908 to 1948 it applied its resources in grants towards specific research projects in various departments of the University. The Society has been supporting symposia since 1948.
Please contact Nicola Fry for further information.
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