Schulich law professor accepts grant for research on trade-related illicit financial flows in Africa

Olabisi Akinkugbe is Viscount Bennett Professor of Law at Dalhousie University

Schulich law professor accepts grant for research on trade-related illicit financial flows in Africa
Olabisi Akinkugbe | Image credit: Dalhousie University’s Schulich School of Law

Olabisi Akinkugbe has won a $45,000 Social Science and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC) Insight Development Grant, which builds on his current research supported by the Dalhousie Belong Research Fellowship Award, Dalhousie University’s Schulich School of Law has announced.

Akinkugbe, the Viscount Bennett Professor of Law at the Schulich School of Law, aims to study the political economy of illicit financial flows (IFFs) in trade relations between Nigeria and Ghana, as well as the implications of IFFs for intra-African trade and their potential effects on the promise of economic integration in Africa, in his funded research project called “Illicit Financial Flows, Trade, and the Sustainable Development Conundrum.”

Akinkugbe’s research, which theoretically and methodologically draws upon the analytical tools of socio-legal scholarship, will centre how trade-related IFFs affect the attainment of sustainable development goals in Nigeria and Ghana. It will tackle the context, causes and implications of IFF and illicit trade for economic integration within the Economic Community of West African States.

“Given that my research focuses on Africa, the SSHRC Insight Development Grant provides significant resources to travel and conduct fieldwork that will potentially bring meaningful insight to the substantive issues I am undertaking,” said Akinkugbe in a news release. He also welcomed the chance to publish the research in open access peer-reviewed journals and to distribute them with the core constituencies affected.

Admitted to the Nigerian bar in 2004, Akinkugbe seeks to use interdisciplinary materials from political science, sociology, international development studies, economics and history to address economic development issues and international economic law matters.

Akinkugbe’s research interests include international economic law, international human rights law, international investment law, development and law, international courts and African business laws, whether in the national, regional or global context. He has served as director of the International Law Association in Canada, as co-editor-in-chief of the African Journal of International Economic Law, as editor of the Nigerian Yearbook of International Law and as president of the African International Economic Law Network.

The professor has also been a member of the board of the Journal of International Economic Law, of the executive council of the Society of International Economic Law, of the editorial board of the Caribbean Law Review, of the Canadian Law and Society Association, of the American Society of International Law and of the Human Rights Research and Education Centre, Ottawa.

The annual grant aims to assist in the conduct of research in its initial stages, the development of new research questions and experimentation with new methods, theoretical approaches and ideas.

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