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Student governance in Africa: Thematic summary of key literature

Luescher, Thierry

The purpose of this paper is to provide a brief overview of certain themes and perspectives identified in literature on student governance in Africa. The paper addresses itself primarily to reflective student leaders and scholars interested in the subject. In accordance with the literature, the paper highlights the importance of the macro-political and macro-economic context in understanding the dominant forms student governance has taken. The paper briefly clarifies the notion of ‘student governance’ in relation to other key concepts found in scholarly literature on student politics. Then the actual content of scholarly literature on student governance is reviewed thematically in relation to (1) forms of and responses to student protests; (2) student government; (3) student representation in university governance; and (4) student participation in system-level governance. Lastly, the paper outlines a proposal for a high-level debate on student governance in Africa. In sum, the paper finds that there is a wide range of forms of student political involvement in higher education governance. From the governance perspective, these can be analysed first in relation to their formalisation and, secondly, with reference to relevant levels of regime governance. Informally, students participate in higher education governance by employing a range of protest forms which extends from co-operative-informative forms to highly confrontational and militant ones. Student protests have attracted more scholarly interest than any other aspect of student politics.

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Title of Paper: Student governance in Africa: Thematic summary of key literature
Conference Name: CHET Seminar on Improving Governance and Student Leadership, African Student Leadership Network Project, at the , South Africa
Conference Date: 2005-04-01
Conference Location: University of Stellenbosch

Document Type:Conference Paper ()
Subject Area:Students
Country:African Continent
Keywords:Student Politics, Higher Education Institutions HEI s, Developing countries, Student Protest, Governance, Student Faculty Interaction, Literature Review

File Size:339 KB
Rights:Permission granted by author.
Additional information:Presented at the Seminar,
Date Added:29 October 2007

Luescher, Thierry (2005). Student governance in Africa: Thematic summary of key literature,