Dates: 18-19 November 2020

Venue: Virtual

Past events


Dates: 24-26 April 2019

Venue: Kenyatta International Convention Centre, Nairobi, Kenya

Theme: “Tackling Implementation Challenges for Africa’s Sustainable Development”

The African Capacity Building Foundation (ACBF) is organizing the 2019 Africa Think Tank Summit in partnership with the
Government of Kenya and the Kenya Institute for Public Policy Research and Analysis (KIPPRA), together with various partners.

The main objective of the 2019 Africa Think Tank Summit is to provide a better understanding of why policies and programs are not effectively implemented in many African countries and offer recommendations for enhancing implementation to achieve desirable development outcomes.



Dates: 5-7 April 2018

Venue: Labadi Beach Hotel, Accra, Ghana

Theme: “Tackling Africa’s Youth Unemployment Challenge: Innovative Solutions from Think Tanks”


Many policies and strategies have been implemented across the countries to address youth unemployment and these include support for the establishment of business enterprises and training to develop entrepreneurial skills for the youth, farmers funding for the youth, and offering education and training including tertiary education to develop their skills. These strategies and interventions have not led to a major breakthrough in the generation of employment especially among the youth.

Poor implementation and lack of capacity for implementation of policies to address youth unemployment particularly with regards to the prevailing mismatch between tertiary education and job needs are areas that continue to require policy focus particularly on effective design of programs.

African countries are still searching for effective and sustainable solutions to promote jobs creation and significantly address the scourge of the continent’s youth employment. In this line, the various State and non-State actors have critical role to play in supporting and/or complementing the efforts made by the governments. Think tanks could therefore play a key role in researching around the capacity gaps facing employment in Africa and sharing best practices on how to address them especially with regard to job creation, policy development and their effective implementation on the continent.

It is against this background and building on the successes of the First, Second, Third and Fourth Africa Think Tank Summits that the African Capacity Building Foundation (ACBF) is organizing the Fifth Africa Think Tank Summit planned for 5-7 April 2018 in Accra, Ghana under the theme Tackling Africa’s Youth Unemployment Challenge: Innovative Solutions from the Think Tanks”.

The 2018 Summit is organized in partnership with the Government of Ghana and the Institute for Democratic Governance (IDEG), a leading think tank in Ghana. Other collaborating partners include the African Development Bank (AfDB), the African Union Commission (AUC), the NEPAD Planning and Coordinating Agency, the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (ECA), the World Bank, the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD), the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation, the Think Tank Initiative (TTI), the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation (BMGF), the Regional Network of Agricultural Policy Research Institutes (ReNAPRI) et the Alliance for African Partnership (AAP).


  • Discuss the role that effective leadership can play in addressing Africa’s youth unemployment challenge.
  • Share experiences on how to develop the requisite private sector that can create jobs for the youths.
  • Reflect on how to build the critical technical skills necessary for sustainable youth employment opportunities.
  • Offer practical solutions for youth employment in Africa through the sharing of innovations and good practices, including entrepreneurship and agricultural enterprises.


2017 Africa Think Tank Summit

Theme: African Think Tanks and the Industrialization in Africa

Venue: Abidjan (Côte d’Ivoire)

Dates: 6-8 April, 2017

The Fourth Africa Think Tank Summit will be held in Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire, from 6 to 8 April 2017. Participation is planned for 100 representatives of African think tanks, selected representatives of global think tanks, development partners, selected private sector and non-state actors as well as Government officials, and notable personalities providing the keynote addresses.

The format for the Summit will follow the standard format established for these Summits globally – an opening panel of thought leaders on the first day followed by consultations in various formats (presentation panels, breakout sessions, round-tables, interactive sessions, and keynote addresses). The format is intended to maximize interaction between participants to allow for networking, exploration of issues, and sharing of knowledge and experiences.

Over the 3 days of discussion, the Summit will have keynote presentations and plenary panel sessions exploring the above five topics designed to touch on various dimensions of the Summit’s objectives.

Three break-out sessions will be used to focus on formulating the strategies, drawing from the presentations and keynote addresses. Conclusions from the breakouts will be considered by round-table sessions at the closing of the Summit, and taken forward as the framework for a collective strategy. Each of the break-out and round table sessions would address one of the Summit objectives and strategy components.

Following the positive reception at the Second and Third Summits, two interactive sessions will be repeated. These sessions are designed to maximize interactions among participants, promote knowledge-sharing, identify networking and collaboration opportunities, and strengthen familiarity and trust among the think tank professionals.
• Lunchtime “Peer Assist”: Practitioners of Today for Africa’s Tomorrow. Ten young scholars present key ideas of research papers they are working on relating to policy issues they feel are critically important to the future of Africa, and lead a table discussion.
• Showcasing Think Tank Best Practices and Innovations. This interactive session features eight organizational and policy innovations from resource persons of selected think tanks, presented first from booths for participants to visit and then at round table discussions to go more in depth on how they achieved success.

The meeting will be held in English and French, with simultaneous interpretation services. The Summit will be conducted in accordance with the Chatham House Rule.

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