Presentation on theme: "The New Strategic Approaches to Integration and Development in the ECOWAS Region: Towards Securing the Future Olutayo, A.O. PhD., Olutayo, M.A.O. Ph.D."— Presentation transcript:
The New Strategic Approaches to Integration and Development in the ECOWAS Region: Towards Securing the Future Olutayo, A.O. PhD., Olutayo, M.A.O. Ph.D. & Akanle, Olayinka.  Department of Sociology, Department of Sociology, Faculty of the Social Sciences, University of Ibadan, Nigeria. University of Ibadan, Nigeria. And Department of Political Science, And Department of Political Science, Lead City University, Ibadan, Nigeria Lead City University, Ibadan, Nigeria E-mails: firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com. Telephone No: +234-8034006287, Telephone No: +234-8028492216  Senior Lecturer (Reader), Department of Sociology, University of Ibadan, Ibadan, Nigeria.   Senior Lecturer, Department of Political Science, Lead City University, Ibadan, Nigeria.   Doctoral Candidate, Department of Sociology, University of Ibadan, Ibadan, Nigeria. 
8/24/2014 Introduction and Background Regional Integration has become a unique and distinctive characteristic of development efforts of nations in the recent years. it is now considered an essential driver for political stability, sustainable development and poverty eradication (Tywuschik and Colin, 2009; Briet, 2010). Given their proven capacities to drive development across domains therefore, the numbers of regional integrations have increased tremendously and efforts are being renewed to ensure appropriation of opportunities associated. The effects of trends and globalization on this is definitive since it is today impossible for nations to avoid both globalization complications and opportunities especially in relation to the past, present and future of nations and regions. It would then be correct to maintain that regional integrations are today the norms rather than the exceptions.
8/24/2014 Introduction and Background Contd Experiences suggest that better attention from stakeholders should be accorded regional integrations than it has ever been given as it offers more opportunities just as it presents formidable challenges that could compromise the objectives. If well managed, the opportunities of integration are robust and promising enough to neutralize the challenges and justify positive interventions. Integration in the ECOWAS region, particularly, if well implemented and dynamized therefore could lead to institutionalization with interdependence that would ensure cooperation, liberalizations schemes, high level interregional trades, positive capital flows, harmonized economic and financial policies and economic growth. This will lead to encouraged oneness of motives towards equal development of all integrating actors in the region and this will ultimately jump start human development in the region.
8/24/2014 Regional Integration and the Development Process Definition of Regional Integration. Proliferation of Regional Integration in the 21 st Century. It is the process of large-scale territorial differentiation characterized by the progressive lowering of national/internal boundaries and the possible raising of new external boundaries for the benefits of integrating states to protect integration agenda of the region. An important element of integration is that it is voluntary and the level of integration is variable and context as well as situation specific/dependent. Key ingredients of regional integration are cooperation, coordination, conflict and independence. To integrate positively, nations who are members must decide whole-heartedly in principle and practice to cooperate with regional mandates of the institutions and coordinate their activities to align with the purpose of the integrating whole.
8/24/2014 Regional Integration and the Development Process Contd. There is certainly a place for conflict. Conflicts are necessarily inevitable among integrating states. Conflict can however point to the way of the future and become the important change agent. Regional integration does not mean colonization, states still retain their independence and their sovereignty must be respected regardless of the degree of integration. Regional Integration must be able to evolve strategies and frameworks to accommodate shocks and still achieve ultimate goal. This is why regional integration is often considered as a process rather than a state. The overall goal of ECOWAS regional integration drives is to form an economic bloc organized around an economic and monetary union.
8/24/2014 Regional Integration and the Development Process Contd. Regional Integration is to promote cooperation and integration in order to create an economic and monetary union to encourage growth and development in the West Africa. Ultimately, ECOWAS regional integration is to guarantee sustainable development in the region. Discussion on development The linkage between Regional Integration and Development
8/24/2014 ECOWAS and Regional Integration in West Africa through Methodological Frameworks Analysis of The System of Indicators of Regional Integration (SIRI): The Best Key Variables of Complexity in Regional Integration (RI) Arrangements and The Order of Focusing/Measures of Success. The SIRI is useful for systematically explaining integration elements and processes of regions. The SIRI utilized objective indicators to examine regional integration issues like those raise in this paper. The System of Indicators of Regional Integration (SIRI): The Best Key Variables of Complexity in Regional Integration (RI) Arrangements and The Order of Focusing/Measures of Success therefore utilized in the analysis in this presentation.
8/24/2014 ECOWAS and Regional Integration in West Africa through Methodological Frameworks The two frameworks were adopted simultaneously in explaining, measuring and illuminating integration in the ECOWAS region.
8/24/2014 ECOWAS and Regional Integration in West Africa through Methodological Frameworks The Best Key Variables of Complexity in RI Arrangements (Best, 1997). Project. Order of Focusing, Effects and Measures of Success (De Lombaerde and Van Langenhove, 2005). Project. From The Best Key Variables of Complexity in Regional Integration (RI) Arrangements and The Order of Focusing/Measures of Success. many factors and forces involved in regional integration present complexities that must be coped with to achieve integration and results. These forces are also largely dynamic with changing characteristics. This is why integration has the capacity to graduate from states to processes.
8/24/2014 Conclusion The ECOWAS region face particularly challenging development situation today after they have been hit hard by the food crisis, financial and economic crisis and climate change (Marti, 2010). A search for development must therefore be total, aggressive and these efforts must include regional integration to be promising. The nexus between regional integration and development is crucial and must be the overarching element of ECOWAS master plans. The need to focus on motivations and socio-psychological imperatives of members states has been emphasized in this presentation.
8/24/2014 Conclusion Contd Even though economic considerations are attended to, these must not be reified and are bound to be counter productive if social and psychological capitals are ignored. Disregard of these have been manifested in the ECOWAS poor integration and weak development. According to social integration theory, societies/nations have inbuilt propensity to integrate and relate with others. Like humans, nations are social entities whose well being depend on affiliation and integration with one another. Integration gives purpose and meanings to national life and lack of it gives the feeling of ‘excessive and dangerous individualism’ in Durkheimian sense especially in the age of globalization. Lack of integration thus carries negative development cost for nations whose region could mobilize for in the face of survival threats that are endemic in the 21st century.
8/24/2014 Conclusion Contd In-built integration propensity of nations however must be total according to social integration theory. It must include appropriation of domestic/internal trajectories like culture, values, ethics, ethos, motivations and socio- psychology as a complex integration whole. Prioritizing and annexing socio-psychological imperatives will build sense of ownership of regional integration agenda in the minds of integrating states and this is very necessary for successful regional integration. This will build trust, negate negative mutual suspicion and stimulate positive motivations. This will be through national socio-cultural national institutionalization ties strengthening to address common challenges among equals in partnerships.
8/24/2014 Conclusion Contd This is the new strategic approach and road map to regional integration because national socio-psychology and mind sets appropriation are certainly pivotal forces of any integration strategy. It is then possible to wonder why this has taking some time to be appreciated and annexed hitherto. A crucial reason is large scale approaches complications and misplacements as well as regrettable detachment of the regional organization and the member states from core stakeholders in the regional integration and development marketplace.
8/24/2014 Conclusion Contd The social-psychological approach to integration was least valued because of excessive attention to trade and economic goals just as ECOWAS and member states rarely consulted with their citizens, Civil Society Organizations (CSOs), Non Governmental Organizations (NGOs), Faith Based Organizations (FBOs), Trade Unions, private sectors and the academic community who could appreciate these dynamics. This is regardless of the critical capacity gaps of diplomats and politicians in marshalling workable integration and development agenda in the region.
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