Dr. Kai Gehring
University of Zurich



Many African countries struggle with repeated episodes of conflict and difficulties to form stable governments. Prior scientific contributions have attributed these challenges to, for instance, the slave trade and to the artificial imposition of borders by colonial powers. Based on this history, many states are composed of a variety of distinct groups, sometimes with strong historical tensions between those groups. Our project aims to better understand the challenges of government formation and achieving compromises between different regional and ethno-linguistic (as per Ethnologue) groups in Africa. For that matter, we are gathering data on the composition of all African governments since independence of the respective states.

In addition to regional origin, we are interested in language as it is crucial for communication and often linked to deep-rooted cultural differences. By compiling a comprehensive database of government composition, we hope to gain important insights. Better understanding the challenges of government formation is crucial to achieve better policies, more intrusive institutions and hopefully more state stability.

Our approach to this challenge is to ask everyone who agrees about the importance of this topic and has some knowledge about particular countries and government members to contribute to the project. The aim of such a “citizen science” project is to make use of the dispersed knowledge that regular people possess, instead of relying solely on experts and their assessments. Any information that you possess, even if it is only about a few presidents, prime ministers or ministers important and helpful. The final project website will list all “citizen experts” who have contributed to the database to acknowledge your contribution. Moreover, we will hold a lottery for all contributors with the chance to win 10 Amazon vouchers (à $US 50) or 1 brand-new iPad 2018, 128 GB.


Please consult the how-to guide to fill out the forms correctly or click here for information about Ethnologue.


Response Forms

You can choose the country on which you would like to contribute by clicking on the respective link below.


Algeria 1960s-1970s
Algeria 1980s-1990s
Algeria 2000s-2010s
Angola 1970s
Angola 1980s-1990s
Angola 2000s-2010s
Benin 1960s-1970s
Benin 1980s-1990s
Benin 2000s-2010s
Botswana 1960s-1970s
Botswana 1980s-1990s
Botswana 2000s-2010s
Burkina Faso 1960s-1970s
Burkina Faso 1980s-1990s
Burkina Faso 2000s-2010s
Cameroon 1960s-1970s
Cameroon 1980s-1990s
Cameroon 2000s-2010s
CAR 1960s-1970s
CAR 1980s-1990s
CAR 2000s-2010s
Chad 1960s-1970s
Chad 1980s-1990s
Chad 2000s-2010s
DR Congo 1960s-1970s
DR Congo 1980s-1990s
DR Congo 2000s-2010s
Rep. Congo 1960s-1970s
Rep. Congo 1980s-1990s
Rep. Congo 2000s-2010s
Cote d'Ivoire 1960s-1970s
Cote d'Ivoire 1980s-1990s
Cote d'Ivoire 2000s-2010s
Djibouti 1970s
Djibouti 1980s-1990s
Djibouti 2000s-2010s
Egypt 1960s-1970s
Egypt 1980s-1990s
Egypt 2000s-2010s
Equa. Guinea 1960s-1970s
Equa. Guinea 1980s-1990s
Equa. Guinea 2000s-2010s
Eritrea 1990s
Eritrea 2000s-2010s
Ethiopia 1960s-1970s
Ethiopia 1980s-1990s
Ethiopia 2000s-2010s
Gabon 1960s-1970s
Gabon 1980s-1990s
Gabon 2000s-2010s
The Gambia 1960s-1970s
The Gambia 1980s-1990s
The Gambia 2000s-2010s
Ghana 1960s-1970s
Ghana 1980s-1990s
Ghana 2000s-2010s
Guinea 1960s-1970s
Guinea 1980s-1990s
Guinea 2000s-2010s
Guinea Bissau 1970s
Guinea Bissau 1980s-1990s
Guinea Bissau 2000s-2010s
Kenya 1960s-1970s
Kenya 1980s-1990s
Kenya 2000s-2010s
Lesotho 1960s-1970s
Lesotho 1980s-1990s
Lesotho 2000s-2010s
Liberia 1960s-1970s
Liberia 1980s-1990s
Liberia 2000s-2010s
Madagascar 1960s-1970s
Madagascar 1980s-1990s
Madagascar 2000s-2010s
Malawi 1960s-1970s
Malawi 1980s-1990s
Malawi 2000s-2010s
Mali 1960s-1970s
Mali 1980s-1990s
Mali 2000s-2010s
Mauritania 1960s-1970s
Mauritania 1980s-1990s
Mauritania 2000s-2010s
Morocco 1960s-1970s
Morocco 1980s-1990s
Morocco 2000s-2010s
Mozambique 1970s
Mozambique 1980s-1990s
Mozambique 2000s-2010s
Namibia 1990s
Namibia 2000s-2010s
Niger 1960s-1970s
Niger 1980s-1990s
Niger 2000s-2010s
Nigeria 1960s-1970s
Nigeria 1980s-1990s
Nigeria 2000s-2010s
Senegal 1960s-1970s
Senegal 1980s-1990s
Senegal 2000s-2010s
Sierra Leone 1960s-1970s
Sierra Leone 1980s-1990s
Sierra Leone 2000s-2010s
Somalia 1960s-1970s
Somalia 1980s-1990s
Somalia 2000s-2010s
South Africa 1960s-1970s
South Africa 1980s-1990s
South Africa 2000s-2010s
South Sudan 2000s-2010s
Sudan 1960s-1970s
Sudan 1980s-1990s
Sudan 2000s-2010s
Swaziland 1960s-1970s
Swaziland 1980s-1990s
Swaziland 2000s-2010s
Tanzania 1960s-1970s
Tanzania 1980s-1990s
Tanzania 2000s-2010s
Togo 1960s-1970s
Togo 1980s-1990s
Togo 2000s-2010s
Tunisia 1960s-1970s
Tunisia 1980s-1990s
Tunisia 2000s-2010s
Uganda 1960s-1970s
Uganda 1980s-1990s
Uganda 2000s-2010s
Zambia 1960s-1970s
Zambia 1980s-1990s
Zambia 2000s-2010s
Zimbabwe 1980s-1990s
Zimbabwe 2000s-2010s