Call For Ideas

International Communities Organisation (ICO) invites researchers, professionals and students working in human rights or development studies to share their abstracts or concept notes regarding research and field work on Cameroon.

The main goals are to understand the relationship between investments in Cameroon and their “social impact”, as well as to compile relevant research on human rights issues as listed in the country reports from the UN Human Rights Bodies. [1]  Please see below for further information and we look forward to receiving your application.

An Overview of Current Economic, Political and Social Issues in Cameroon

Cameroon is suffering from a decades long tension between the Francophone community, which constitutes the majority of the population and heads the federal government, and the minority Anglophone community which reside in the North-West and South-West regions. Since October 2016, the Anglophone regions have been subjected to armed conflict and violence.

The activists from the Anglophone communities are claiming their political rights as well as economic and social equality. This has caused approximately 400 civilian deaths, 200 military deaths and 500,000 displaced people[2]. It is argued that these tensions are leading to instability, poor living standards, high economic and humanitarian costs, and exacerbated poverty.

Despite these challenges, economic growth in Cameroon has been at its highest in the Central African Region (CEMAC) over the past several years and has proven its resilience. However, barriers remain to economic growth in the country; one of the largest issues is the lack of domestic competition in markets, which leads to low productivity. Further, transportation and the movement of goods remains a significant barrier for the private sector. For the continuation of economic growth, the World Bank and IMF state that the most significant risks are the deteriorating security conditions and lack of investment flows into the country.

Due to a high population growth rate, poverty has increased since 2007 in Cameroon by 12 per cent [3]. Access to education is an issue where 43 per cent of the population has received no formal education[4]. There tends to be a significant gap in the education system between urban areas and rural areas and the Francophone and Anglophone areas[5]. Lastly, some argue that a lack of transparency is an ongoing challenge throughout the country.

Research applications can cover purpose aims:

  • Explore the relationship between investments in Cameroon and their “social impact”, as well as to propose relevant outcomes on human rights issues as listed in the country reports from the UN Human Rights Bodies
  • Explore social and economic issues in Cameroon from a human rights lens.
  • Set clear links between investment and human rights in Cameroon.
  • Find direct links between FDI and the right to self-determination in Cameroon.
  • Explore the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on civil and political rights in Cameroon such as low levels of political participation and voting registration.
  • Clarify Positive and Negative FDI practices and its impact on human rights in Cameroon and the region. Any examples given from the region or other countries would need to make clear links to Cameroon. These links may include but are not limited to relevant recommendations for Cameroonian stakeholders.

Application Process and Next Steps:

  1. Please send titles, brief abstracts (350 words) and a short author(s) bio for consideration to [email protected] by 15 March 2021.
  2. We will respond to all applications by 1 April 2021
  3. Subsequently, you will be invited to present your paper at an online conference that will take place on 22 June 2020.
  4. Completed papers will be submitted by 1 June 2020.
  5. Completed papers will be published on the ICO blog and the selected papers might be invited to another conference in London which will potentially take place in late 2021 (due to Covid-19, London conference is subject to final confirmation)


  • The guide length of final articles ranges from 5.000-12.000 words. Short concept notes are also accepted.
  • ICO retains the right to change the dates of the previously mentioned events at any time.

About Us

International Communities Organisation (ICO) is a not for profit, self-determination research and innovation, nonpolitical organisation based in London. Guided by its vision of self-determination and the values of development and human rights, ICO aims to empower communities.

ICO does not support one opinion or another and does not take sides.  The role of ICO is to facilitate the discussion and to help capture any human rights outcomes, both negative and positive.

Please download the Call for Ideas here



[2] “Cameroon: Overview,” (2019).

[3] “ibid.


[5] The education systems and curriculums in these two areas are slightly different.

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