Scholars discuss African developments in Maputo

Scholars of the DFG Priority Programme (SPP 1448) "Adaptation and Creativity in Africa" will discuss the first results of their research at a conference in Maputo, Mozambique, from 1-6 October 2012. The Priority Programme is funded by the German Research Foundation (DFG), and has been jointly coordinated by the Universities of Leipzig and Halle-Wittenberg since 2011. It brings together around 70 researchers from Germany and Africa who analyse processes of social change in Africa. In doing so, they particularly examine how African societies deal with processes of accelerated global change. The following questions are at the fore: How does adaptation occur? What are the sources for innovation? How is social order established? In Maputo, nearly 100 German and international guests are expected to take part in a summer school for junior researchers, a workshop on gender equality and postcolonial gender studies, and the three-day conference.

The meeting will be opened and attended by high-ranking DFG representatives. The former German Federal President and patron of the Priority Programme, Horst Köhler, will also travel to Maputo. He will join a roundtable setting to discuss the topic of "Africa in Current Globalization Processes", together with African academics and politicians. Also present at the conference will be members of African partner organisations from approximately 20 different countries as well as representatives of African institutions of higher education and research.

The DFG Priority Programme (SPP 1448) "Adaptation and Creativity in Africa - Technologies and Significations in the Production of Order and Disorder" was established in 2011 for a funding period of six years. Within this programme, biennial research projects are financed which are located at various university and non-university institutes throughout Germany. The programme is coordinated by its two spokespersons, Prof. Dr. Richard Rottenburg of the Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg, and Prof. Dr. Ulf Engel of the University of Leipzig.

The Leipzig-based sub-project of the SPP 1448 deals with "Changing Stateness in Africa". It currently employs two researchers and is jointly managed by Prof. Dr. Matthias Middell and Prof. Dr. Ulf Engel at Leipzig University, and by Prof. Dr. David Simo at the Université Yaoundé I in Cameroon. During the first research period, the changing relationship between state and society in Cameroon and Ghana was analysed. In the second research period, this analysis will be extended to Ethiopia.

After the conference in Maputo, two further thematic conferences are planned to discuss research results of the SPP 1448: 2014 in Yaoundé, Cameroon, and 2016 in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.

Further information is available at the following website:

For any further questions from members of the media, please contact:

Lena Heinze
Administrative Coordinator
DFG Priority Programme 1448 Adaptation and Creativity in Africa
University of Leipzig
Centre for Area Studies
Thomaskirchhof 20
04109 Leipzig
Phone: +49 341 97-30265; +49 176 299 993 20
Email: lena.heinze(at)