An alumnus of AAI’s African Scholarship Program of American Universities (ASPAU), Professor Mkandawire earned his Bachelors of Arts and Masters of Arts degrees in Economics at Ohio State University. Professor Mkandawire will receive the AAI 2014 Distinguished Alumnus Award at AAI’s 30th Annual Awards Gala on September 22 in New York City.
A widely published scholar on the social sciences in Africa, Professor Mkandawire has produced highly acclaimed academic papers on the challenges of development, policymaking, social policy, adjustment and democratization on the continent.
A Swedish national of Malawian origin, he is an economist with many years’ experience in the promotion of comparative research on development issues. He is former Director of the United Nations Research Institute for Social Development (UNRISD). Prior to taking up his appointment with UNRISD, he was Director of the Council for the Development of Social Science Research in Africa (CODESRIA), a Senior Research Fellow at the Centre for Development Research in Copenhagen. From 1986 through 1996, he was Executive Secretary of the Council for the Development of Social Science Research in Africa (CODESRIA) based in Dakar, Senegal.
Professor Mkandawire sits on several scientific advisory boards including the Social Science Research Council, the Dag Hammarskjöld Foundation, and the International Social Science Council.
He was awarded Honorary Doctorates by the Universities of Helsinki and Ghana. He also holds a doctorate in letters from Rhodes University.