Africa: Former Ambassador and President Head High-Powered Council to Support Afrobarometer

24 November 2020
press release

Accra, Ghana — Former U.S. Ambassador Johnnie Carson, ex-President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf of Liberia, and 14 other global political and thought leaders are joining forces to provide strategic intelligence, foresight, and influence in support of Afrobarometer, the pan-African research network announced Monday.

As members of a newly inaugurated International Advisory Council, this who's who of Africa-focused development will advocate for Afrobarometer's mission to make African voices count in public policy and development.

Afrobarometer is in its third decade of collecting, analyzing, and disseminating reliable data on Africans' experiences and evaluations of democracy, governance, and quality of life.

"The caliber of experience, leadership, and engagement represented on this council, from all across Africa and beyond, speaks volumes about the seriousness with which the global community takes Afrobarometer's contribution to data-driven development," said Carson, who will serve as chair. "We're excited to help build the future of this pan-African institution."

Council members, who met virtually for their inaugural meeting Monday, include:

Carson, former U.S. assistant secretary of state for African affairs and former ambassador to Kenya, Zimbabwe, and Uganda

Johnson Sirleaf, Liberia's president from 2006 to 2018 and Nobel Peace Prize laureate in 2011

Lord Browne of Ladyton, member of the UK House of Lords

Dr. Willy Mutunga, former chief justice and president of the Supreme Court of Kenya

Margot Wallström, former minister of foreign affairs of Sweden, EU commissioner

Zeinab Badawi, international broadcaster and education leader

Professor Nic Cheeseman, professor of democracy, author and newspaper columnist

Professor Larabi Jaïdi, senior fellow at the Policy Center for the New South

Abdoulie Janneh, former UN under-secretary general

Attahiru Muhammadu Jega, professor and former chairman of Nigeria's Independent National Electoral Commission

Peter Kellner, political analyst and scholar

K. Riva Levinson, president and CEO of KRL International, author and columnist

Professor Bhekinkosi Moyo, director of the Africa Centre on Philanthropy and Social Investment

Dr. Monde Muyangwa, director of the Africa Program at the Woodrow Wilson Center

Dr. Gerard Salole, social anthropologist and independent consultant

Thomas P. Sheehy, distinguished fellow in the Africa Center of the United States Institute of Peace

Afrobarometer, a nonprofit headquartered in Ghana, is an independent survey research network that provides reliable data on Africans' experiences and evaluations of democracy, governance, and quality of life. Seven rounds of surveys were completed in up to 38 countries between 1999 and 2018. Round 8 surveys in 2019/2021 are planned in at least 35 countries. Its data and analysis are a public good, available free at

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