The African Development Imperative (TADI) is a non-governmental organization (NGO) that is duly registered in and primarily operates from the United States. Operating at the interstices between theory and practice, TADI is best conceptualized as an NGO with robust consultancy and think tank underpinnings whose focus is on the manner in which economic, political and social inequalities violently radicalize certain young people of African descent, particularly in Africa, Europe and the Americas. In so doing, we are interested in how and why certain structures, policies and resources promote or impede youth development in countries with individuals of African descent, and what can be done in response to this state of affairs. We operationalize youth as individuals aged 18 to 35 who subsist on the periphery and for whom access to education, full employment, equitable political participation, security and upward mobility is rather tenuous and routinely unattainable.

In the foregoing vein, the solutions which we proffer frontally tackle both the overarching problem (violent radicalization and extremism) that we aim to redress and its causes (economic disaffection, political disenfranchisement and social ennui). The interventions, which emerge from this exercise, are grouped into three discrete but overlapping clusters, namely violent radicalization and extremism mitigation, entrepreneurship and innovation, and activism and governance. We marry this project-based focus with an ethos that is rooted in leveraging philanthropy and rigorous research, as evidenced by our Advisory Services Practice, which deploys bespoke expertise at the behest of inter-governmental organizations (IGOs), NGOs, government agencies and the private sector with the ultimate aim of empowering young people and altering the trajectories of their lives for the better.

Several approaches, assumptions and values undergird our modus operandi. Firstly, we believe that ‘action’, thought leadership and service are inextricably linked, and that youth agency and deliberate partnerships should inform whatever projects we implement. Secondly, we view challenges, which really are opportunities in disguise, as requiring a nuanced perspective that draws from our experiences in myriad milieux, rigorous training in disparate fields, and an intentionality that is mindful of the pitfalls to which practitioners can succumb in pursuit of noble goals. In this regard, we accord a great deal of importance to integrity, ethics and transparency in our endeavors, along with an adherence to the belief that attaining a laudable end can never justify the utilization of a dubious end or flawed means, irrespective of how convenient this path might seem in the short to medium-term.

In closing, we appreciate your interest in The African Development Imperative and urge you to get in touch should you wish to partner with us, propose project ideas and/or avail yourself of our Advisory Services Practice.

With best wishes

Adedayo Oluwakayode Adekson, PhD
Founder and Chief Executive Officer