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Areas in Africa with more Chinese-backed projects were more likely to experience protests

By Bruno Martorano, Assistant Professor, Maastricht University and Maastricht Economic and Social Research Institute on Innovation and Technology (UNU-MERIT), United Nations University
Francesco Iacoella, Researcher, Maastricht Economic and Social Research Institute on Innovation and Technology (UNU-MERIT), United Nations University
Laura Metzger, Postdoctoral Fellow, Center for International Development, Harvard Kennedy School
Marco Sanfilippo, Associate Professor of Economics, Università di Torino
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Chinese investment in Africa has helped spark economic growth and improve social outcomes across the continent. Yet Chinese projects often seem to go hand in hand with civil protests. We wanted to find out whether these were isolated incidents or signalled broader discontent among the population.

In new research, we show that regions hosting Chinese-led projects are more likely to experience protests.

China’s financial involvement on the continent has grown dramatically…


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