Making policies work

Our programmes

We strategically focus our work through five programmes: European External Affairs, Migration, Security and Resilience, Economic and Agricultural Transformation and African Institutions. But these programmes don’t operate in isolation. They are intertwined, working towards a common set of results and impact.

European External Affairs

The EU is dealing with a number of challenges close to home, while at the same time aiming to play a more significant role in solving global development problems. To address the challenges and deliver on its objectives, coherent and effective external action is essential, but that is no easy task. We support the EU institutions and member states in working towards that goal, while not shying away from critical analysis that helps hold institutions and governments to account.

African Institutions

Sustainable development is about more than economic transformation. Finding the right governance structures to support changing societal dynamics is just as important. Despite major steps forward in this respect, the African continent still confronts frequent social uprisings and electoral violence. We aim to assist African institutions in preventing these consequences of weak governance.


Migration and mobility have huge potential to stimulate development as drivers of social and economic change. They can improve livelihoods of individuals and families and contribute to economic growth. However, migration also poses challenges, as current events across the globe illustrate. We aim to promote sustainable strategies to tackle these challenges and help leverage the potential of migration for global development. We also work to improve dialogue and cooperation on migration and mobility between Europe and Africa.

For an overview on the work of ECDPM’s migration team, please visit our dossier page:

Security and Resilience

The security threat in Africa is acute, and conflict and fragility are moving closer to the EU’s borders. African and European institutions remain torn between provision of long-term development assistance and humanitarian and crisis aid, though the latter is recognised to be costly and unsustainable. We aim to support African, European and global institutions in engineering better transitions from short-term responses to resilience and development over the long haul.

Economic and Agricultural Transformation

Agriculture is the backbone of most African economies. However, to create more and better jobs, end hunger and combat the consequences of climate change on the continent, drastic change is needed. Sustainable economic and agricultural transformation is therefore central to many African development strategies, as well as European policies related to development on the African continent. Our purpose is to help African and European institutions accomplish these strategies. We focus on the private sector, trade and investment, regional integration and sustainable food systems.