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Title: Model or mirage? : 'good governance' solutions and the politics of reform in Ghana's oil industry
Author: Oppong, Nelson
ISNI:       0000 0004 6496 9603
Awarding Body: University of Oxford
Current Institution: University of Oxford
Date of Award: 2016
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Despite significant growth in the number of 'good governance' initiatives promising to generate optimum developmental outcomes in resource-rich countries, there is surprisingly little empirical information about their sector and country-specific dynamics. This thesis focusses on how external 'good governance' norms and institutions interact with domestic actors and organisations to shape the institutional landscape of resource-rich countries. This objective is pursued by means of an in-depth case study of Ghana, a Sub-Saharan African nation that has become a middle-sized exporter of crude oil since January 2011. More specifically, it scrutinises two major reform efforts designed to steer the country's oil industry towards a developmental direction: the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI), an international auditing and multi-stakeholder oversight mechanism, and the Public Interest and Accountability Committee, a home-grown citizens' oversight initiative in Ghana. The analytical lens employed in the study is based on comparative political economy and comparative institutional analysis. They are employed to make sense of the dialectic between the promise of corrective 'good governance' measures and the mirage of reform outcomes in the Ghanaian oil sector. The main argument advanced here is that 'good governance' solutions in the oil industry are essentially weak instruments, due to their inability to grapple with deep-seated instrumental politics, perverse institutional environment, and elite capture that continue to undermine reform in Ghana. This point is adduced to highlight the shortcomings of the 'good governance' agenda. The thesis draws from multiple data sources, collected through semi-structured interviews with various stakeholders, public officials, NGOs and community activists, development agencies, and oil companies. These are complemented by archival research, documentary sources, non-participant observation, and workshops.
Supervisor: Mustapha, Abdul Raufu Sponsor: University of Oxford
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Ghana Oil Politics ; African Politics ; Political Economy of Oil ; Good Governance and Institutional Reform ; Ghana ; Good governance ; Oil ; Institutions