Historical Background


The African Institute for Economic Development and Planning (IDEP) is a pan-African institution created in 1962 by the General Assembly of the United Nations. It began its operations on 21st November 1963 with the primary purpose of accompanying and supporting newly independent African countries in their quest to build their human resource capacities as a necessary prerequisite for sustaining independence and promoting socio-economic development. Its main activities, derived from its mandate, are organized around a portfolio of capacity development and training programmes as well as a set of policy research and dialogue initiatives. It also offers on-demand advisory services to governments and public institutions and serves as a forum for the exploration of alternative thinking on African development.

The Institute functions as a subsidiary body of the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (ECA). It is headquartered in Dakar, Senegal and its membership comprises all the 54 African Member States. IDEP is the pioneer pan-African institution established on the African continent for the building, upgrading and/or updating of the technical aptitudes and proficiencies of mid-career and senior government officials in economic management and development planning.

Mission & Mandate


Over the years since its establishment, IDEP has primarily functioned within its overarching mandate of accompanying African governments in their training and capacity development efforts in the fields of economic management and planning. To this end, it works closely with the ministries of finance, economic development, and planning of its African Member-States to assess their needs and develop general, specialized, and tailor-made courses for their mid-career and senior officials. It also works with various line ministries concerned with the socio-economic development of Africa. In addition to its core training and capacity development mandate, the Institute also carries out associated policy research activities on various economic management and development planning themes. Furthermore, it undertakes policy advisory services at the request of the Member States, these services being tailored to the particular needs of requesting governments. Finally, the Institute also organizes a regular series of policy dialogues, public seminars, and policy conferences.

The work of IDEP is informed by a vision of an Africa which is self-reliant, independent, and integrated. IDEP envisions itself as a center of excellence at the service of its African Member States for the development of the high-level human resources needed for the progressive socio-economic transformation of the continent. The Institute also aspires to serve as a site for the articulation of innovative policy thinking that is adapted to the circumstances and needs of African countries as these are articulated at different times. The Institute further aims, through the training, research, and dialogue activities and programmes it organizes, as well as the advisory services it offers, to contribute to the nurturing and strengthening of a networked corpus of African officials who are distinguished for their technical proficiency, recognised for the self-confidence they display in their engagements, and noted for the pan-Africanist spirit they embody. It is the commitment of IDEP to ensure that all of the officials who pass through the Institute’s activities and programmes experience an important sense of self-empowerment that can propel them to greater professional heights and achievements, whilst contributing to the transformation of their countries.