Thandika Mkandawire, a Swedish national of Malawian origin, is an economist with many years of experience in the promotion of comparative research on development issues. He studied economics at Ohio State University and the University of Stockholm and taught at the Universities of Stockholm and Zimbabwe. He holds a Doctorate in Letters from Rhodes University. He has just left the United Nations after 11 years at the helm of UNRISD to be the chair of in Africa Development at the London School of Economics. From 1986 through 1996, he was Executive Secretary of the Council for the Development of Social Science Research in Africa (CODESRIA) based in Dakar, Senegal. Prior to taking up his appointment with UNRISD, he was Senior Research Fellow at the Centre for Development Research in Copenhagen.