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Africa Week 2020: The African Union’s Role in the Global Order

October 27, 2020 @ 2:00 pm - 3:00 pm

On several fronts the African Union (AU) has advanced innovative responses to some of the world’s most pressing issues. During the COVID-19 pandemic the AU and its specialised health institution, the Africa Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (Africa CDC), launched coordinated action to support member states. This included using regional collective negotiating power to secure more financial resources, setting up a pooled procurement mechanism, and supporting member state efforts to prevent, diagnose, and treat COVID-19.

On peace and security, the AU and its recognised regional economic communities (RECs) often take leading roles in ending violent conflict in their spheres. Some RECs, such as the Economic Community of Central African States (ECCAS) are increasing their work in peace and security whilst others, such as the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), have played pioneering roles for years. Meanwhile, the AU has negotiated with the United Nations (UN) on complementarity issues and designed new ways for the regional and international actors to cooperate on peace and security issues.

The global order is transforming and moving away from great powers, a trend that the COVID-19 pandemic has the potential to speed up. This talk, delivered by Dr Kathryn Nash from the Political Settlements Research Programme, will explore how the AU has previously contributed to the global order and how it might help to shape transformations going forward.


Register now via Eventbrite. This event is free to attend and will be hosted online via Zoom.


AFRICA WEEK is a cross-university celebration of the University of Edinburgh’s links with the African continent. It encourages collaboration between our different communities, seeks to address current issues and asks important questions of the past, present and future. Africa Week 2020 embraces the theme of Movement.

Our programme features events which tap into movement through privilege, movement which is sometimes forced, and movement which can be restricted. Learn during Africa Week how to make the move to study abroad, what it’s like to move to Edinburgh for the first time, how covid-19 has affected movement across the continent, and how we, as a university, can provide the tools for the continent’s future movers and shakers.

For more information on other Africa Week events, please visit or contact

Africa Week 2020 is a partnership between: Edinburgh Global, The Centre of African Studies, The Mastercard Foundation Scholars Program, Ekasi Podcast, Political Settlements Research Programme, The James Tait Black Prize, Race.Ed, TIBA, Teaching Matters, the African Caribbean Society, and the Scotland Africa Recruitment Group.


October 27, 2020
2:00 pm - 3:00 pm
Event Category: