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1. Creating a sustainable future for think tanks in Africa: the case of Liberia (Format .PDF)

Liberia, Africa's oldest independent republic, is sparsely populated and abundantly endowed with many valuable minerals and, possibly, petroleum. The country's next constitutionally mandated elections in 2017 could be pivotal, for Liberia's electorate has the unusual opportunity to choose a leader who could initiate a movement towards making it a capable state. Civil society has the responsibility to empower citizens to participate in the process and engage candidates to jointly enhance that probability and ensure that Liberia does not elect a government that remains a family affair with cronies,2 repeating the historical tradition. Civil society needs to engage citizens to become aware of their rights and responsibilities, and influence candidates to realize their electoral goals through free and fair elections. Liberia cannot afford to elect persons who will govern like their predecessors, for that will keep it a failed state, the preferred environment of terrorists and organized crime.

Liberia is, in 2015, at the cross roads; given that the score of persons who have expressed their intentions to seek the highest office3 are lured, not by the desire to transform governance and build a prosperous Liberia, but by the prospect of acquiring autocratic power that confers virtually unlimited access to wealth, the Center for Policy Studies (CERPS) has designed a Plan to create awareness among citizens to demand accountable leadership that will transform this failed state.4 The Ebola epidemic showcased the parlous state of governance5 which allowed the disease to reappear and threaten the opportunity for economic