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Comparative politics with an focus on Africa


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I am interested in governance and state building in sub-Saharan Africa. I find it super hard to narrow down my target school list. Most top schools have faculties that focus on Africa or governance. I am now doing a master in African studies at UCLA, so I am definitely going to apply for UCLA. I also want to apply for UW-Madison or school near Madison, like Chicago and Northwestern. For other schools, I really don't know how to choose. Anyone have ideas about a good place to do African politics or possible safe schools? I am thinking of applying for Harvard, MIT, Stanford, Berkely, Princeton, Cornell, Colombia, St.Louis,  NYU, Michigan, Florida. (For the top 5 schools, I feel like I am just wasting the application fee...) 

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Michigan State does the Afrobarometer. It also has a strong Africa focus in its comparative subfield, if I remember correctly. 

If you apply to a top school with a poor fit, it probably won't turn out well. Apply to places (top, middle, and safety) that have Africanists. If a top 5 has a good fit, that's not a waste of a fee. If it doesn't, then yes, you're wasting your money. A program won't accept you if you're a bad fit. Even if it did, you would have a hard time studying Africa with no Africanists.

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