Even today, Africa is home to many of the poorest countries in the world. However, the continent is undergoing major changes and is experiencing economic growth.

Africa, the second-largest continent on the globe, consists of 54 independent nation states and can be subdivided into five regions: North Africa, West Africa, Central Africa, Southern Africa and East Africa. Over the course of the past 40 years, it has experienced massive population growth – today counting over a billion people of more than 3,000 ethnic groups, with great variations in culture, language and religion. The continent is still home to a considerable proportion of the world’s poor, but it is also characterized by rapid development and economic growth.

NUPI conducts wide-ranging research on Africa, in particular on issues related to social and economic development: fundamental questions concerning the conditions for state formation and democracy, as well as specific studies of individual countries and areas. Other important thematic areas include how post-conflict counties can avoid relapse, and the role of international peace operations in such circumstances – not least, the activities of the UN and the African Union.

Source: Store Norske Leksikon and NUPI.