Effects of political economy on development in Cote d’Ivoire

6th July 2020
Author: Émilie Combaz

Cote d’Ivoire presents a paradoxical picture on development: it ranks as a lower-middle income country and has had strong economic growth, yet it ranks low by human development – lower than countries with similar levels of per capita income. This helpdesk report synthesises evidence about the effects of political economy on development in Cote d’Ivoire, based on a rapid review of academic, practitioner, and policy literature in English and French published in the past five years. Available knowledge shows that four aspects of political economy have shaped the country’s development, playing out as key factors, issues, and dynamics: 1. a growing but imbalanced economy that works for elites; 2. a state that is a powerful resource, yet a weakened institution; 3. structural inequalities that lead to massive exclusion and marginalisation; and 4. sustained political conflict, contestation, and violence. Of all the actors operating in this context, Ivorian civilian elites, Ivorian armed forces, and foreign elites are the decisive ones.

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Suggested Citation

Combaz, E. (2020). Effects of political economy on development in Cote d’Ivoire. K4D Helpdesk Report 833. Brighton, UK: Institute of Development Studies.


6th July 2020


Continent: Africa

Country: Ivory Coast