A Youth Think Tank to build a new Africa

Senegalese poet-president Léopold Sédar Senghor tended to repeat: « En 2000 Dakar sera comme Paris ». Utopia, dream or good intentions? Be that as it may, Dakar, like most African capitals, not being pessimistic, but consistent, does not resemble Paris. There is also no need to want to be like Paris, rather to create something particularly African, inclusive and inspiring model to the point of attracting other societies to finally start copying from the continent, and not the other way around as it has been in recent centuries.

Financial Institutions and global reports on the human development index constantly position African countries among the poorest in the world, despite the enormous human potential and natural resources. In the context of the 1960s, when most African states gained international sovereignty, some of the Asian countries shared the same level of GDP as these. However, in less than five decades, these Asian giants have overtaken economically many African nations and are already seen as "emerging countries" to the point of competing with advanced OECD economies.

While they develop an advanced economy through the good use of science and technology and quality education for their citizens, episodes of civil war and religious terrorism, political violence, abuse-crimes against women and children, poverty, violation of human rights, the recurrent constitutional amendment to monopolize political power, the collapse of institutions, ethnic-religious struggles, the social injustice that roots poverty and forces the young population to migrate continue to occur in the African continent; though she contaminates less, the sociological consequences behind the effects of climate change are disastrous, both in urban and rural African areas, causing more problems to those that already existed and in most cases, authorities find it hard to resolve due to lack of means and good policies.

To mention one the positive impacts of globalization that allows interhuman communication through Science and modern technology and its impact on the development of modern societies, Africa still occupies the last position relating to human development, especially women. True, in recent years, while global economy was stagnant, the majority of the African economies made some progress, but it did not have an impact in the life of the population. Rather, poverty, inequality and social uncertainties continued to advance.

Projected estimations made for the years 2030 to 2050 (United Nations) foresees major positive restructuring-sociological impacts due to demographic weight of its young population. It can be a source of instability and conflict if it is not well managed. And so far, the appropriate policies are not being implemented.

Recognizing some advances that are being carried out by African institutions, still some of these policies that are expected to change the trend are not being enough, especially seeing the increase in the lack of socio-professional opportunities that affects the female population more. Normally, it is the product of a solid cultural weight that relegates women to an inferior and dependent position within the community. The African population is mostly young, but these are not considered when making policies that will influence their lives and that of future generations.

Seeking to change the trend and create a new paradigm that is more inclusive and in favor of the young class, Ubuntu Pachamama Strategic Think Tank came to light as a space for reflection totally led by young people. Its mission is focused on finding solutions and strategic guidelines considering the voice, aspirations and concerns of the young population, especially women. To reach the objective, starting from an apolitical and more academic stance, it aims to be a laboratory that manufactures innovative ideas capable of creating a new continent. We want to give voice to the young ones, create a space for participation, critical thinking and change the image of Africa in the course of international relations. Africa as a continent cannot continue receiving Development Aid, being treated as a “teenager” who has to be told what to do and when from abroad. She herself must be responsible to herself, to her daughters and sons, and to speak with her own voice in all those matters that affect humanity.

And for this to be possible, our project aims to do its work differently: seducing young people to be more participative. We are counting on bringing together all the forces, intelligence and youth associations across the continent and the diaspora around the following issues: Youth, employment and demography ; Women and Gender; Environment and preservation of resources ; Modern, inclusive and diversified economy ; Democracy and Human Rights ; Peace, Security and Defense ; Geopolitics, Diplomacy and International Relations ; and African History and culture in the modern context .

The long-awaited result is that, in a few decades (short and long term), help decision makers perform deep structural transformations, become a dynamic and inspiring continent for the rest of societies. We are called to reflection to build a new continent.


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