Leadership and Development in Postcolonial Africa: The cases of Botswana, Somalia and Somaliland
Keywords:leadership, development, postcolonialism
Scholars have routinely identified weak and ineffective institutions as the root cause of underdevelopment across Africa. Such findings, which place emphasis on ‘institutional systems’ and ‘state mechanisms’, too often neglect the critical leadership dimensions of development challenges. Whilst the scientific study of leadership is commonly associated with organisational behaviour, a venture beyond scholarly guidelines reveals how leadership finds relevance at all levels of social interaction. The study of postcolonial nation building is amongst the finest ways to assess the interconnectedness of leadership and development. At government infancy, where there are no systems or state institutions to speak of, a group of elite individuals occupy a space to which the process of leadership is enacted to its greatest potential. In order to interrogate this further, this article focuses primarily on Botswana and Somalia; two countries conveniently positioned on either end of Africa’s development spectrum.