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WRITER: VITALIS TORWEL
CONTACT: LOIS GRAY
International Programs
Iowa City IA 52242
(319) 335-2026
e-mail: lois-gray@uiowa.edu

Release: Nov. 27, 2002

UI professor to discuss democracy in Africa Dec. 3.

African expert Joel D. Barkan will speak to the Iowa City Foreign Relations Council on "Democracy in Africa: What Future?" from noon to 1 p.m. Tuesday, Dec. 3 at the Rockwood Fellowship Hall, Congregational Church, 30 N. Clinton St., Iowa City. The lunch begins at noon, and the lecture begins at 12:30 p.m.

Barkan, a professor of political science in the University of Iowa College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, will focus on his recent comparative study of the legislature in sub-Saharan Africa and the use of Geographic Information Systems (GIS) for designing better electoral systems in emerging African democracies. Barkan's most recent article, "The Many Faces of Africa: Democracy Across a Varied Continent," appeared in this summer's issue of the Harvard International Review.

Barkan, who is also a senior consultant on governance at the Africa region of the World Bank, has conducted a series of studies of political institutions in Kenya, Ghana, Lesotho, Nigeria, Tanzania, Uganda and Zambia. In 2001-2002, he was a visiting fellow at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars in Washington D.C. He was also a visiting fellow at the United States Institute of Peace (1997-98) and at the National Endowment for Democracy (2000) where he is also a member of the International Forum for Democratic Studies.

Lunch will be served at the lecture, and the cost is $7 for members and $8.50 for non-members. The deadline to reserve lunch for this event is noon Friday, Nov. 29. Soleil will cater the event. Checks may be written to the Iowa City Foreign Relations Council and mailed to ICFRC, 38 International Center, Iowa City, Iowa 52242-1802. Reservations may not be made by phone but last minute adjustments may be made. For more information, call ICFRC Executive Director Tom Baldridge or Marianne Weiss at (319) 335-0351.

For those unable to attend, WSUI-AM (910) will carry this program Wednesday, Dec. 4, following the noon news. This event is sponsored by the ICFRC with additional support from UI International Programs, Iowa State Bank & Trust and The University of Iowa Division of Sponsored Programs.

ICFRC is part of International Programs, which consists of a number of offices, centers, degree programs, academic programs, research projects and services. Organized under the associate provost for academic programs and dean for International Programs, these units serve to further internationalize the campus and community and promote global scholarship, research and teaching.