Mwananchi: strengthening citizen engagement in Africa

Mwananchi is a dynamic platform that explores and discusses how to support ordinary citizens to hold their governments accountable and improve the delivery of public services, based on rules that work.  



State-society relationships where being answerable is key to delivering on trust-based roles and responsibilities


Where everyone has an opportunity to have a voice as part of ‘Ubunthu’, forming the basis for public decisions


High impact interventions that change the rules of the game, promote inclusion and sustainable engagement

Testing assumptions

Exposing and learning from critical examinations of external interveners’ assumptions as to how change comes about


Where the concerns of ordinary citizens form the basis for promoting local problem solving and better policies


Examining the politics of citizen-state relations in various contexts and the possible implications of external interventions

Photo credit: Swathi Sridharan

Uncover stories of change

Mwananchi began as a programme to assess specific governance issues prioritised by country stakeholders. As a result, over five years we have gathered a wealth of evidence-based learning on how to tackle governance challenges including:

  • Strategies for identifying areas of institutional blockage;
  • Approaches to identifying the potential gamechangers on a specific issue;
  • Discovering the entry points in addressing social accountability concerns

Read our stories

From Our Blog

In search for the game changers: rethinking social accountability
Dec 19, 2014

The last two decades have seen a rapid growth of i...

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Open Government Partnership launch in Malawi
Oct 12, 2014

The government of Malawi is launching its Open Gov...

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Workshop: Governance, Accountability and Citizen Empowerment
May 21, 2014

The Mwananchi Programme is participating in this u...

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Workshop: International Transparency and Accountability
May 20, 2014

On May 2-3, 2014, the Mwananchi project participat...

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Rethinking social accountability in Africa: lessons from the Mwananchi Programme
Sep 04, 2013

Despite economic progress in Africa, rising inequ...

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