The Foundation’s research team is primarily engaged with producing two major annual publications, the Ibrahim Index of African Governance (IIAG), and a research report to accompany the Forum at the Foundation’s annual Governance Weekend, which is focussed on a different topic every year. Previous topics include Africa’s urbanisation, youth and agriculture.

Key research documents


The Foundation also produces research outside of these major products on issues surrounding the focus of the Foundation’s work.

Other research documents

Each month we highlight reports relating to African governance we have found interesting. Any opinions expressed are those of the authors and not the Mo Ibrahim Foundation, and listing here is not an endorsement of any views therein.

Afrobarometer released a policy paper on media freedoms in Africa, based upon the data collected in the Afrobarometer Round 7 survey. The paper is titled ‘How free is too free? Across Africa, Media Freedom is on the Defensive’ and analyses the extent to which respondents believe the media in their countries to be free and their personal perspective on media freedom. It also reports on how people use and access the media on a day to day basis. The paper found that support for media freedom has declined in 25 of the 31 countries tracked since 2011. West Africans are the most likely to support increased government regulation, while North Africans are most likely to support media freedoms.

Read the full report


Freedom House, an independent watchdog organisation dedicated to the expansion of freedom and democracy around the world, published their special report ‘Freedoms Under Threat: The Spread of Anti-NGO Measures in Africa’. The report describes and analyses the approaches that African governments are taking to impose restrictions on non-governmental organisations (NGOs) activity. The report notes that restrictions on NGO activity in Africa form part of a broader strategy adopted by regimes to narrow democratic space, with most anti-NGO measures violating human rights commitments, particularly those related to freedom of association, assembly and expression. Over the last 15 years, 12 African governments have adopted measures constraining the legitimate activities of NGOs.

Read the full report


The Institute for Peace and Security Studies (IPSS) published their annual flagship report The State of Peace and Security in Africa (SPSA) following the Tana High-Level Forum on Security in Africa. The first part of the report analyses the security trends from the previous year, as well emerging or potential security challenges for the coming year. The second part of the report provides an in-focus analysis on security developments in the Horn of Africa. The report is based on extensive desk research and deep content analysis, drawing on the IIAG, among other sources. The SPSA focuses on six themes that help explain the nature and dimensions of peace and security challenges on the continent: Corruption, Social Policy and Protests; Political Liberalisation and Election Hotspots; Adverse Climate Change, Conflicts and Forced Migration; Managing Resource Wars Among Farmers and Pastoralists; Violent Extremism; and Cyber Warfare.

Read the full report


Selected reports published in May