Photo by Yogendra Singh

The book Collective Institutions in Industrialized Nations by Samuel E. Enajero discusses the complexities of the sub-Saharan economic system. One of its focal points centers on the various institutions guiding their economy.

The world is collectively facing an economic crisis. Most countries suffer from plummeting gross domestic product, exacerbated by increased unemployment and labor demand. While it’s relatively difficult to quantify the damages it has caused, it’s easy to say that this can be attributed to the ongoing global pandemic, not to mention the diplomatic issues between some countries.

The pandemic’s effect on the economy is passably recent. However, even before it occurred, one country’s financial state has constantly stood out among others.

Africa is one of the countries that have, for so long, experienced an economic crisis. The pandemic has only worsened this dilemma as their labor market situation continues to face challenges, and their cost of living is constantly rising. This situation has persisted for years, perhaps even decades, and it’s a center of various professional research and studies.

Yet, a persistent problem as this might need less outside influence. Instead, it needs a realization from the region and the people’s attempt toward improvement.

African Economic System

Before diving into the African economy, it’s valuable to define what an economic system generally is.

An economic system is established on how governments or countries organize and utilize their available resources, services, and goods across the country they govern. This regulates the factors that manage the resources’ production. While its function primarily focuses on policing the resources, it isn’t encompassed and measured by these materials alone. Instead, it’s encompassed by many institutions, entities, and agencies.

Hence, to influence their economic standard, countries don’t only rely on their goods. This is what African society, especially sub-Saharan Africa, lacks. Various other factors impact the circulation of wealth and resources.

For their citizens to better understand and manage this economic system, they need more knowledge and complete comprehension. Most countries whose economic systems have continuously improved or plateaued at a normal state don’t dependently and rely solely on their trading culture. Instead, they bank on enhancing their workforce and knowledge management.

Sub-Saharan Africa at Its Operational Level

The author explores this detail in the book Collective Institutions in Industrialized Nations by Samuel E. Enajero. He states that societies are comprised of various institutions, yet some of these are taken for granted in this free market democratic capitalism era. The book identifies that some cultures, specifically sub-Saharan Africa, pay little attention to the institutional weaknesses that pull down their economic and living standards.

Enajero illustrates that while changes at the economy’s generic level urge development, modern economic development models include variables at the operational level. Unfortunately, this is where the sub-Saharan culture and society struggle to improve and maximize. A massive factor influencing any country’s economy is its human capital. This can be measured by the citizens’ knowledge, skills, and habits. Increasing the quality of the sub-Saharan’s human capital may improve their productivity and influence the economy’s output.

While the book doesn’t explicitly mention its importance, this article aims to expound how an improvement in education – and operational variables – can help African society improve its economic system. Education might not directly stop poverty. But its effect on people’s productivity and understanding of the general mechanisms of the economy can influence their labor market.

Strengthening Educational and Productivity Framework

The future of every country, not just sub-Saharan Africa, lies in its citizens’ abilities and talents. However, unlike other counties, many have argued that the African education system is outdated and not in line with the world’s current needs.

Ensuring the region receives high-quality education opportunities doesn’t only pave its way to improve economically. It’s the right thing to do to help their citizens survive in such a competitive society.

A better-quality education has and remains wishful thinking for most parts of the place. Hence, sub-Saharan Africa’s society must first tap into improving its education’s quality and relevance by strengthening its capacity to observe and address teaching and learning challenges. These include both teacher-related and student-related issues. They must adjust their traditional technical vocational education and suit its relevancy to the general labor market’s needs. In doing these, they’re allowing an increase in after-school opportunities for their citizens and societal development.

In line with the development of their existing educational system, the sub-Saharan government must also ensure that everyone has access to this. It has been noted that there’s a growing population of out-of-school African children. While this is only the extensive tally, a portion of this must be allotted to the sub-Saharan population.

The current educational standard isn’t the only thing that needs attention. This standard and accessibility must go hand in hand for effectiveness. Hopefully, by addressing the ongoing academic issue, the African government and society can increase their market labor’s productivity, helping alleviate its economic dilemma.

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