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Democratization through Education? The role of education in strengthening civil agency and voice in Sub-Saharan Africa. (Case study: Uganda)

Total Cost €


EC-Contrib. €






Project "EDU-DEM" data sheet

The following table provides information about the project.


Organization address
address: SPUI 21
postcode: 1012WX

contact info
title: n.a.
name: n.a.
surname: n.a.
function: n.a.
email: n.a.
telephone: n.a.
fax: n.a.

 Coordinator Country Netherlands [NL]
 Project website
 Total cost 165˙598 €
 EC max contribution 165˙598 € (100%)
 Programme 1. H2020-EU.1.3.2. (Nurturing excellence by means of cross-border and cross-sector mobility)
 Code Call H2020-MSCA-IF-2015
 Funding Scheme MSCA-IF-EF-ST
 Starting year 2016
 Duration (year-month-day) from 2016-09-01   to  2019-05-01


Take a look of project's partnership.

# participants  country  role  EC contrib. [€] 


 Project objective

EDU-DEM advances our understanding of the role of education in fostering democratization processes in sub-Saharan Africa from the bottom up. Education has been long treated as an area of development programming that is separate from strengthening civil society formation and democratization processes. We still face several knowledge gaps in existing research on how education increases the agency of the wider civil sphere. This void is striking and it is here where EDU-DEM makes an innovative contribution to existing debates. In doing so, EDU-DEM will 1) explore the correlations between educational attainment and civil society characteristics and agency; 2) assess how formal and non-formal education systems and programmes increase the attention to and comprehension of local politics; 3) identify innovative, multi-scalar and context-specific approaches to nurture democratization processes through education. EDU-DEM brings together the disciplines of education and international development while drawing from and contributing to research on democratization, civil society and agency. Uganda serves as a case study as it exemplifies a striking paradox occurring in the majority of sub-Saharan African states. Despite a steady increase of funds and the commitment to support development through the grassroots level, experts witness weak democratization processes on the ground. Leading local CSOs consist of a small group of well-funded, urban-based organisations, led by a highly educated elite, with only a token presence in rural areas. On the other hand, the majority of grassroots and less-visible civil society actors are frequently characterized by political illiteracy –not to mention the country’s poorly educated wider civil sphere. The findings of this project will be published in a monograph, two journal articles, policy briefs and publicized to a non-specialized audience via outreach activities (e.g.: dedicated website, media and blog articles, round-table discussions).


year authors and title journal last update
List of publications.
2019 Simone Datzberger, Marielle L.J. Le Mat
Schools as change agents? Education and individual political agency in Uganda
published pages: 18-28, ISSN: 0738-0593, DOI: 10.1016/j.ijedudev.2019.02.007
International Journal of Educational Development 67 2019-06-11
2018 Simone Datzberger, Outi Donavan
Silencing the past in Ugandan schools. The role of education in reconciliation processes
published pages: 1-17, ISSN: 2164-7259, DOI: 10.1080/21647259.2018.1517963
Peacebuilding 2019-05-08
2017 Simone Datzberger
Film Review: N.G.O. – Nothing Going On. Africa at LSE (11 May 2017). Blog Entry.
published pages: , ISSN: , DOI:
Africa at LSE 2019-06-13
2018 Simone Datzberger, Tam Nguyen
Deconstructing Civil Society Actors and Functions: On the Limitations of International Frameworks for Fragile States
published pages: 30, ISSN: 2076-0760, DOI: 10.3390/socsci7020030
Social Sciences 7/2 2019-06-13
2018 Simone Datzberger
Why education is not helping the poor. Findings from Uganda
published pages: 124-139, ISSN: 0305-750X, DOI: 10.1016/j.worlddev.2018.05.022
World Development 110 2019-06-13
2018 Simone Datzberger, Marielle L.J. Le Mat
Just add women and stir?
published pages: 61-69, ISSN: 0738-0593, DOI: 10.1016/j.ijedudev.2017.09.006
International Journal of Educational Development 59 2019-06-13

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The information about "EDU-DEM" are provided by the European Opendata Portal: CORDIS opendata.

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