Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Somalia Launches First Think Tank

On January 15, 2013 Somalia launched its first think tank, the Heritage Institute for Policy Studies (HIPS), which is based in Mogadishu.

HIPS says that it "aims to inform and influence public policy and practice" and will "conduct field based research, informed analysis, and innovative solutions in the form of reports, policy briefs, and public debates."

They already have a Facebook page and a Twitter account, but it looks like its website is not yet live as of writing this post.

According to the latest University of Pennsylvania think tank ratings, Africa has 550 think tanks, or 8.4% of the world's total of 6545.  Within Africa, South Africa has the largest number of think tanks, with 85.  Here is the list of countries in Africa with 10 or more think tanks:
  • South Africa: 85
  • Kenya: 53
  • Nigeria: 46
  • Ghana: 36 
  • Uganda: 27
  • Ethiopia: 25
  • Zimbabwe: 24
  • Cameroon: 21
  • Burkina Faso: 16
  • Senegal: 16
  • Malawi: 15
  • Tanzania: 15
  • Benin: 14
  • Namibia: 14
  • Botswana: 13
  • Cote d'Ivoire: 12
In related news, the President of Somalia was a guest speaker this week at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) in Washington, DC.

Update: Foreign Policy writes about Somalia's "first think tanker."