The International Research Project (IRP)

General Information on Zambia
Zambia is a landlocked country in Southern Africa, neighbouring eight(!) countries. Zambia, has a rugged terrain and diverse wildlife, with many parks and safari areas. On its border with Zimbabwe is famed Victoria Falls – indigenously called Mosi-oa-Tunya, or "Smoke That Thunders”.
It is one of the poorest countries in the Africa; according to data from the world bank (2015) Zambia had 54.4% of its population living below the national poverty line. While agriculture contributes ‘only’ about 13% to the country’s GDP, agriculture is Zambians main employer and employs about half the total workforce in Zambia. In 2010, the World Bank named Zambia one of the world's fastest economically reformed countries. Furthermore, the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA) is headquartered in Lusaka, Zambia's capital.
IRP 2017/2018 Information Previous academic year’s IRP took place from the 30th of April 2018 until the 15th of May 2018 – lasting 2 weeks. The research itself has already started in January 2018, and was finalised around June 2018.
The research For the IRP 2017/2018, AEclipse collaborated with The European Centre for Development Policy Management (ECDPM), who provided us with intellectual support during the research process. This year, the twenty IRP 2017/2018 participants made:
“An assessment of factors shaping foreign investment in the manufacturing (especially agroprocessing) sector in Zambia”

What’s in it for me? During this project participants did:
  • Get a complete view of FDI determinants in the agro-processing sector in Zambia
  • Learn about the impact of FDI on inclusive (e.g. local) economic growth
  • Get to know and learn about companies, institutions, associations and policy makers in Zambia
  • Get first-hand experience in conducting a real-life and relevant research about a developing country
  • Improve your economic research skills through workshops from professionals of the field of development economics
  • Hopefully contribute to the existing literature on FDI determinants, by collecting Zambian agro-processing sector-specific information
Why is the agro-processing sector relevant? About half of Zambia’s labour force works in agriculture. To bring about meaningful development to the Zambian people, there is need for Zambia to diversify from primary agriculture into agro-processing to add value to their products. The further the value chain stage in which the product is being sold, the higher the mark-up the company gets.
Why the focus on FDI? To be able to diversify into agro-processing, substantive capital investments are needed. Foreign investments can be a good way for developing countries to get the necessary means for such investments.
What will the desk research from January-April consist of? Divided into four groups, participants will construct and asses the contextual framework of the policies and factors (e.g. macroeconomic and political factors) that shape foreign investment in the agro-processing sector in Zambia.
What will be researched in Zambia? During the two-week field research, participants will interview the local stakeholders, with a focus on FDI companies, to find out how the factors researched above impact their decision to invest in Zambia and how it affects their current operations.
The report can be found below:

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Costs and Payment
The trip will cost approximately €849 in total, inclusive of the flight, visa, hostels, transportation, particular activities, and the occasional group dinner (of which €799 are paid to AEclipse and €50 represent the fee for the Visa, that must be arranged by yourself). The amount will be deducted in the month of January, preceded by a notification of the deduction. Students are advised to bring at least €250 for other expenses, as well as for emergencies. Depending on other activities that will be planned, this extra amount of €250,- can increase. Note that you can still join the trip while choosing not to participate in relatively expensive activities. Certain activities will be optional and thus not compulsory! Finally, take into account that other costs such as vaccinations may apply – more information on these details will follow.