Centro de Estudos sobre África e Desenvolvimento (CEsA)

Center for African and Development Studies (CEsA) is a research center within the Lisbon School of Economics and Management at the University of Lisbon. It is dedicated to the study of economic, social and cultural development in developing countries in Africa, Asia and Latin America, although it places particular emphasis on the study of Portuguese-speaking countries, China and Pacific Asia, as well as Brazil and other Mercosur countries. Additionally, CEsA also promotes research on any other theoretical or applied topic in development studies, in other regions generally or across several regions.

From a methodological point of view, CEsA seeks to foster a multidisciplinary approach to the phenomenon of development, and a permanent interconnection between the theoretical and applied aspects of research. Nevertheless, the Centre pays particular attention to the organization and expansion of research supporting bibliographic resources, the acquisition of databases and publication exchange with other research centers. With regard to the first of these, the “Memórias de África e do Oriente” (Memories of Africa and East) project is of particular note, and is currently being undertaken in partnership between CEsA and the University of Aveiro. The main aim of this project is to create a virtual library (Memória de África, http://memoria-africa.ua.pt) and a digital library (Memória de África Digital), the latter to make contents available in digital form.

CEsA participates on educational activities at ISEG, in the Master’s on Development and International Cooperation (MDCI) and PhD on Development Studies. The relationship is manifested in various ways: two representatives of CEsA sit on the MDCI Academic Board; one representative of CEsA sit on the PhD Academic Board; CEsA gives support and teaches various modules; it collaborates in organizing and running the Master’s and PhD Degree research seminar; and it supervises students’ final theses whose development the Center tries to fit into its lines of research.

The Center's activities in the research and thesis supervision encompass the following topics in particular: economic growth and development, globalization and regionalism, institutions and institutional change, governance and public policies, financial systems and development financing, cooperation for development, economic and social history of colonization, migrations and diasporas, nation and Portuguese-speaking identities, urbanization and development.

Internationalization is also an important objective for the Center. This has been pursued through participation in international networks and joint research programs, as well as through the establishment of incentives to ensure its researchers are increasingly published abroad. CEsA also organizes seminar and conference programs, separately or in tandem with the MDCI and PhD, in which there is a high level of participation by foreign guests.

Aiming at promoting dissemination of its scientific output, CEsA has created a diversified collection of publications, in accordance with the nature of work conducted: the “Tempos e Espaços Africanos” (African Times and Spaces) collection, published by Edições Colibri; Development Studies; Working Papers; Brief Papers; Background Texts (for the MDCI); Other publications in partnership and E-books.