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Drawing on original fieldwork in Nigeria, Portia Roelofs argues for an innovative re-conceptualisation of good governance. Contributing to debates around technocracy, populism and the survival of democracy amidst conditions of inequality and mistrust, Roelofs offers a new account of what it means for leaders to be accountable and transparent. Centred on the rise of the 'Lagos Model' in the Yoruba south-west, this book places the voices of roadside traders and small-time market leaders alongside those of local government officials, political godfathers and technocrats. In doing so, it theorises 'socially-embedded' good governance. Roelofs demonstrates the value of fieldwork for political theory and the associated possibilities for decolonising the study of politics. Challenging the long-held assumptions of the World Bank and other international institutions that African political systems are pathologically dysfunctional, Roelofs demonstrates that politics in Nigeria has much to teach us about good governance.
Adigun Agbaje - University of Ibadan
Wil Hout - International Institute of Social Studies, Erasmus University Rotterdam
Leigh K. Jenco - London School of Economics and Political Science
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