REF2014 Impact Case Study: French and British Africa policy. Enhancing Understanding, Improving cooperation

Impact: Societal Impacts, Public Policy Impacts

Description of impact

Research undertaken at the University of Portsmouth has had impact on UK and French policy and on peace and security in Africa. Following the 9/11 attacks on the US, the Saint-Malo process was relaunched and Professor Chafer was invited to act as a Foreign Office consultant, briefing outgoing UK ambassadors to Paris and to Francophone Africa on French Africa policy. Building upon this established record, Chafer’s research has, since 2008, had an impact on both the policy-making process and decision-making.

Who is affected

Government agencies; Foreign affairs officials.


Political instability and insecurity in Africa have become increasingly salient issues since the 1990s. For historical reasons the UK and France are the two EU member states with long-standing commitments in Africa. Chafer’s research has had an impact in three main ways: by providing research-based evidence that has informed decision-making, by providing policy recommendations regarding opportunities for cooperation and by sustaining ‘institutional memory’ concerning the Saint-Malo process, which promised enhanced Anglo-French cooperation on Africa policy. In these ways it has made a significant contribution to enhancing peace and security on the continent.
Impact statusOpen
Category of impactSocietal Impacts, Public Policy Impacts
Impact levelBenefit (delivered impact)


  • Francophone Africa


  • REF2014