Date of Award


Degree Name

Master of Arts


Political Science

First Advisor

Dr. Lawrence Ziring

Second Advisor

Dr. Peter Kobrak

Third Advisor

Dr. Sisay Asefa

Access Setting

Masters Thesis-Open Access


The dual transition program of Ghanaian political economy was put in place as a result of Ghana's huge external debts, its balance of payments problems, and the critical shortage of foreign exchange resulting from years of financial management by seven regimes (civilian and military) that ruled the West African nation since its independence in 1957. Taken together, these problems tilted the balance of power in favor of external actors, including the International Monetary Fund and World Bank.

The study focuses on the dual strategy of macroeconomic measures and structural adjustments. The study then evaluates: (a) the policy components of the political and economic reforms; (b) the response of the Ghanaian state and society to market-oriented as opposed to state-led development; ( c) the relationship between the state and its creditors, including the International Financial Institutions; and ( d) the effect of the relationships on the interaction between the state and society in the domestic politics of Ghana.

The study also analyzes the power dynamics in Ghana relating to the nature of economic and political change, how the structural adjustment program stimulated economic growth under a liberal (albeit military) regime, and how the change integrated the Ghanaian state into the capitalist world economy. Finally, the study shows how the adoption of economic and political reforms helped Ghana on the road to the nation-state status.