The green books are studies that are ordered as a prelude to the establishment of the Multinational Working Groups (GMT) and are usually assigned to highly experienced researchers.
Green Books are critical state of the art reviews of the literature, followed by an agenda for research. The purpose of Green Books is to stimulate a debate on the theme chosen, as a way of preparing for the launching of a variety of activities that may lead to the production of new knowledge on the said theme. Green Books have therefore often led to the establishment of a Multinational Working Group, to which they then serve as the main background document. They have also led to sessions of the Annual Social Science Campus, Summer Institutes, Comparative Research Networks, Research Workshops, and Policy Dialogue Conferences. They have therefore become a programme area of their own.
• Green Books are written on topics identified by the CODESRIA General Assembly as priorities for research; they reflect a thorough and up-to-date knowledge of the literature on the topic chosen, and propose a research agenda that is at the cutting edge of research.
• They are authored by two or three authors commissioned by the Executive Secretariat of CODESRIA on the basis of concept papers submitted to the. The choice of green book authors is based above all on proven expertise on the topic chosen for review.
• Green book manuscripts are peer reviewed prior to publication, exactly like all other CODESRIA publications; particular attention is paid to the innovative nature of the approach and thinking on the topic.
• Green book authors are assisted in accessing the relevant literature on the subject of their book; this may require spending some time at a documentation centre where the literature could easily be accessed; CODESRIA sets aside resources to assist the authors to travel to places where important documentation centres where relevant literature can be found. CODICE also helps in compiling the relevant background documentation.
On the whole, green books, are agenda setting documents and, by being excellent documents on the topics discussed, have enabled a number of scholars to stay afloat and at least partly abreast of the scholarly debates in their fields while the book famine was ravaging many African universities. Not surprisingly, therefore, they are extensively used as course material in African universities. Green Books are nowadays published online as well, and have also been among the most frequently downloaded documents from the CODESRIA website.
The following Green books have been comissioned :
Higher Education in Africa: crisis, reform and transformation by N´Dri T. Assie Lumumba
The problematic of the State by Abdul Raufu Moustapha
Re-thinking Development and Re-Inventing Development Economics by Guy Mhone/Thandika Mkandawire
Africa and its Diaspora: Dispersal and linkages by Paul Tiyambe Zeleza
The political economy of land in Africa by Sam Moyo
Santé, Politique et Société en Afrique contemporaine by Cheikh Ibrahima Niang
L’Afrique et les défies de la Mondialisation by Georges Kobou
Youth and Youthhood in Africa by Ibrahim Abdullah
Reforming the African public sector, retrospect and prospect by Joseph Ayee
The economic and social impact of privatisation of state owned enterprises in Africa by Mike Obadan
Les relations internationales africaines entre États en crise et flux transnationaux by Luc Sindjoun
Socio-économie des grands fleuves africains by José Gonçalves
Littératures africaine francophones des années 1980 et 1990 by Lydie Moudileno
To see if there is currently a call for participation for the writing of a Green Book, please consult the <rubrique7> section.