The Agrarian South Network was born of the initiative of the African Institute for Agrarian Studies (AIAS) in Harare, Zimbabwe, under the stewardship of the late Professor Sam Moyo, in collaboration with universities and non-governmental partners in Africa, Asia and Latin America. The network was consolidated in 2012, on the occasion of the launch of our periodical publication, Agrarian South: Journal of Political Economy.
The Agrarian South Network is the product of a long cross-fertilization of initiatives in South-South research collaboration, led by CODESRIA, CLACSO, IDEAS, the Third World Forum, and the World Forum for Alternatives (see Links). The aim is to build autonomous capacity for research, learning, and publication in the South and to engage in global initiatives towards an alternative, just and sustainable world order. To this end, the Agrarian South Network contributes a special focus on land, agrarian, and labour issues in the contemporary world economy (see Objectives).
The Agrarian South journal is dedicated to publishing high quality theoretical and empirical work in political economy and to providing an outlet for junior and senior researchers, especially those based in institutions in the South. The Editorial Board of the journal and its International Advisory Board are composed of scholars and activists spread across Africa, Asia and Latin America. The journal is published three times per year by Sage-India and the Centre for Agrarian Research and Education for South (CARES).
The Agrarian South Network does not have a legal personality, or a single or permanent source of funding for its research and other activities. It maintains its Secretariat in Harare, at the Sam Moyo African Institute for Agrarian Studies (SMAIAS, renamed in 2016), while its diverse activities depend on the initiatives and resources of its institutional partners (Network Partners), as well as the voluntary work of its individual members (Membership), including the new generation of researchers and activists from across the South.
Institutional partnership and individual membership are defined by participation in the Summer School. This is the most important event of the Agrarian South Network, consisting of a week-long event, occurring annually since 2009, which brings together researchers and activists from Africa, Asia and Latin America and provides a platform for sharing new research and experiences on land, labour and agrarian issues. This is where new ideas are debated, research projects elaborated, and articles prepared for publication.
A further initiative undertaken by the Agrarian South Network is our Training Institute, which is set to begin in 2017. Its purpose is to provide a one-month, internationally accredited training course on land, labour and agrarian studies, intended for MA and PhD students from partner universities, especially in Africa, Asia and Latin America. The course envisions an intensive study of theoretical debates in political economy, the diverse historical trajectories of both North and South, and the new thinking on the agrarian question in the 21st century.