Call for abstracts-Malawi Journal of Politics and Public Affairs February 2024


Political Science Association (Malawi)

In conjunction with Malawi Journal of Politics and Public AffairsandtheUniversityofMalawi’sDepartmentofPoliticsandGovernment

3rd Biennial PSA Conference and Call for Papers

Theme: “30 Years of Multiparty Democracy: Reflections on Malawi’s Governance, Politics, and Development”

Background and Purpose of the Conference/ Special Issue Journal

The Political Science Association (PSA) is a registered entity with a diverse membership of academics and professionals in the fields of political science, political philosophy, political and economic governance, public administration, international relations, public law, public policy and political economy analysis and other related disciplines relevant to the study, analysis and understanding of politics. The purpose of PSA is to contribute to political and socio-economic development of Malawi through promoting the study and analysis of politics through research, advocacy and policy dialogue.

 The Political Science Association (Malawi), in collaboration with the editors of Malawi Journal of Politics & Public Affairs and the University of Malawi’s Department of Politics and Government, are pleased to announce its 3rd Biennial Conference, scheduled to take place from the 25th to the 27th of April 2024. The theme of the conference is “30 Years of Multiparty Democracy: Reflections on Malawi’s Governance, Politics, and Development”. This conference holds special significance as it marks 30 years since Malawi transitioned from a one-party system to a multi- party democracy in 1994.

 In light of this important political milestone, the conference aims to serve as a platform for stakeholders to undertake a comparative analysis and a critical examination of the first 30 years of one-party rule (1964-1994) and the subsequent multi-party era (1994-2024). Specifically, the

overall objective is to gain insights into the political, social, and economic transformations that Malawi has experienced, hence drawing lessons for the future.

 The 3rd Biennial conference will therefore provide a platform for academics, researchers, policymakers, and practitioners to engage in deep discussions, share perspectives, and present empirical findings related to Malawi's political landscape over the two distinctive periods. In conjunction with the conference, the Political Science Association is calling for the submission of papers for presentation at the conference, which will be considered for publication in a special issue of the Malawi Journal of Politics and Public Affairs.

 Specific Thematic Areas

Papers are invited on the following thematic areas, with a focus on the comparative analysis between the first 30 years of one-party rule and the subsequent multi-party era:

  1. Governance Structures and Political Evolution- Comparing the governance structures and political dynamics during the one-party era and the multi-party democracy.

  2. Party Politics and Institutional Framework- Analyzing the evolution of political parties, their roles, and the impact of the institutional framework on political stability.

  3. Socioeconomic Development- Assessing the impact of political systems on socioeconomic development during both periods, including issues of poverty reduction, education, healthcare, and infrastructure.

  4. Citizen Participation and Political Culture- Investigating changes in political culture and the extent of citizen participation in the democratic process across the two eras.

  5. Foreign Policy and Diplomacy- Comparing the foreign policy approaches, regional integration relationships, and international standing during the one-party rule and multi- party democracy.

  6. Media's Role in Politics - exploring the role of media in shaping political processes during the two distinctive periods.

  7. Civil Society Dynamics- Examining the evolution and impact of civil society in promoting political accountability, inclusivity, and social justice.

  8. Anti-Corruption Strategies and Public Sector Reforms- Assessing the effectiveness of anti- corruption strategies and public sector reforms in enhancing transparency, accountability, and efficiency in governance.


    • Abstract Submission Deadline: 11th March 2024

    • Notification of Acceptance: 25th March 2024

    • Presentation of Selected Papers: 3rd Biennial PSA Conference, 25th- 27th April 2024

    • Full Paper Submission Deadline: 10th May 2024

    • Publication: July 2024

We invite interested scholars and researchers to submit abstracts addressing the conference theme, with a specific focus on the comparative analysis of the two distinctive periods in Malawi's political history. Abstracts should be sent to and by the submission deadline. Selected papers presented during the conference will be considered for publication in the July 2024 issue of the Malawi Journal of Politics & Public Affairs.

Overview and Aim of the Journal

Malawi Journal of Politics and Public Affairs is an academic journal published by the Political Science Association (PSA) – Malawi. The aim of the journal is to publish and disseminate high quality articles and research notes on politics and public affairs on Malawi and the world at large, and, in the process, promote informed discussions and debates. Ultimately it is expected that the journal will further assist in advancement of research, teaching and policy advocacy in Malawi and beyond. The journal is thus an essential and valuable resource for political science and public affairs professionals in the private and public sector institutions. Except for special issues, the journal is published biannually in July and December every year.

The specific aims of the journal are:

    • Generate ideas that can stimulate debate and discussion in the field of political science and public affairs in Malawi and other polities.

    • Through applied research notes and case studies, contribute to the process of bridging the gap between practitioners and academics in the field of political science and public affairs.

    • Identify case studies centering on the contemporary challenges and problems faced by public sector institutions and their implications for politics and public affairs in practice.

    • Provide critical insights into the latest thinking in politics as well as best practice in public affairs.


The focus of the journal is primarily on evidence-based articles and research notes that fall within politics and public affairs. Specifically, the scope of the journal includes all sub-fields of political

science and public affairs such as (but not limited to): political theory, public administration and management, international relations and development, comparative politics, public policy and law, electoral process and systems and political economy.

Review Policy and Types of Article Submissions

Malawi Journal of Politics and Public Affairs operates a double-blind reviewing policy in which the anonymity of authors to reviewers and reviewers to authors will be ensured so as to make the review process fair and just. The Editorial Board welcomes the submission of innovative and contemporary (1) Research Papers, (2) Short Notes or Case Studies and (3) Book Reviews for publication from academics, students and practitioners. In submitting articles for publication, authors should indicate whether the paper should be considered for the academic (Research Papers) or the practice section (Short Notes or Case Studies) of the journal.

Word Limit

The acceptable word limit should not exceed (including references):

    • Research Papers: 6,000-7,000 words

    • Short Notes or Case Studies: 4,000-5,000 words

    • Book Review: 1,500 - 2,500 words

Editorial Team 

Chief Editors:

Prof. Happy Kayuni and Associate Prof. Boniface Dulani

University of Malawi

Editorial Advisor:

Prof. Blessings Chinsinga

University of Malawi

Editorial Board:

    • Dr Margaret Sikwese, Novo Habitus Consulting

    • Prof. Asiyati Chiweza, Malawi School of Government

    • Prof. Ragnhild Muriaas, University of Bergen

    • Dr Kim Yi Dionne, University of California, Riverside

    • Dr Felix Lombe, African Institute of Corporate Citizenship

    • Dr Henry Chingaipe, Institute for Policy Research & Social Empowerment

    • Dr Toendepi Shonhe, University of South Africa

Referencing style

    • We recommend use of the Harvard (author-date) in-text citation system. These in-text citations must be in agreement with corresponding entries in the reference list. Examples include the following:

      • 1) author, year, page number: (Burton, 2007: 201-02);

      • 2) two sources, with one author having two works in the same year: (Kazembe, 2011b; Heywood, 2012b);

      • 3)more than three authors/editors: (Dzimbiri, et al., 2013); and

      • 4) Organization, year, volume, page number: (World Bank, 2002, 2: 1786).

    • We require that the reference list must include all and only those sources cited in the text and in the footnotes or endnotes.

    • Examples of references to be used:


  • Jones, A., (2015) The Role of Poverty in Elections, Zomba: Kachere Series.

A Chapter in a Book

  • Chinsinga, B., and Kayuni, H., (2010) “The Complexities and Paradoxes of Governing the Informal Sector in Malawi: The Case of Street Vending in the Cities of Zomba and Blantyre”, Poverty and the Informal Economy in Africa: Experiments in Legal Empowerment, Banik, D., (Ed.), London: Ashgate pp 107-121

A Journal Article

  • Chasukwa, M., and Chinsinga, B., (2012) “Slapping Accountability in Malawi’s Local Governments in the Absence of Councillors”, International Journal of Public Administration, Vol. 36, No. 5 pp 354-366

Other Serial Publications

  • Amonor, K., Chichava, S., Chinsinga, B., and Mukweza, L., (2012) “Towards an Even-handed and Effective Africa-Brazil Exchange for Agricultural Development: African Perspectives”, Poverty in Focus No./Vol. 24 pp 41-44

Newspaper Articles

  • Chinsinga, B., (2014) “Talking Political Economy”, Sunday Times, 19 December 2014 pp 15-16

Website References

Conference Papers

  • Munthali, A., (2014) Seeking Biomedical and Traditional Medicine is a Spiritual Lapse among Zionists: A Case of Zion Church in Malawi, Paper Given at the Anthropology Southern Africa Conference, Cape Town, 29 June-2 July.

Dissertation or Thesis

  • Chinsinga, B., (2005) “The Politics of Poverty Reduction in an Emerging Democracy: A Case Study of Decentralization in Malawi”, PhD Thesis: Germany, University of Mainz


  • Shorter quotations should run on in the text (use single quotes). Longer ones (more than 60 words) should normally be set out as extracts. Authors are advised to leave a space above and below the extract, indent it, and type in single spacing.

Working Papers


  • Chirwa, E., Mvula, P., Dorward, A., and Matita, M., (2013) “Repeated Access and Impacts of the Farm Input Subsidy Programme in Malawi: Any Prospect of Graduation?” Future Agricultures Consortium Working Paper No. 65: Brighton, Institute of Development Studies (IDS)