Friday, January 24, 2014

Lecture: Origins of Political Order by Prof. Francis Fukuyama on Jan. 22 2014 @ Strathmore Business School

Lecture Poster
Professor Francis Fukuyana gave a lecture titled the Origin of Political Order on Wednesday evening at the Strathmore Business Auditorium. The lecture was premised on his most recent book going by the same title.  The professor kicked off his lecture by giving us a background on the thought process plus what influenced him to come up with this book. The September 11 2001 twin tower attacks by terrorist and America's quest to attack Iraq and result to a nation building war / exercise were the catalysts. Hence he embarked on a search of the origins of political order since intervention by the United States tended to get things wrong on the countries that they wanted to 'democratise'.

The professor also enumerated the evolution of political order and classified this into three components namely;

  1. The State [the formation of the state as we know it today by the Chinese and how war and dynasty conflicts was instrumental to this. Notable was the mention of German Sociologist Max Weber]
  2. The Rule of Law [under the rule of law the professor highlighted the role of religion and notable mention was Pope Gregory the 7th and his work on reforming the Catholic Church]
  3. Institutions of Accountability [Lastly, was democracy and why he prefers to Accountability as opposed to democracy]
On the last classification, the professor went to great lengths to showcase that in authoritarian regimes such as China there is considerable accountability in this case in economic terms. The central committee is try as much as possible to secure economic opportunities for its citizens and this nuance is as a result of its unique history. 

Lastly the Prof. Fukuyama tried to tackle Africa from the position of an outsider. He concurred with the Africa Rising narrative and made specific observations. He then concluded by making us aware of a sequel to his book will be published this year. The book looks at the origin of political order in Africa.

The output and learning points from Prof. Fukuyama was there is need to understand local nuances before engaging in democratisation projects by international institutions. I think his works might inform current concepts such as R2P.

Find Prof. Fukuyama Bio and his current projects here:

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