Liberian Studies Association 52nd Annual Conference


April 23-25, 2020


Cornell University

Ithaca, NY

Conference Abstract

Creating structures and favorable conditions that lead to the construction of a functional state requires active participation, comprehensive commitment, and effective institutions, among others. A functional state fosters in the people such qualities as initiatives and inventiveness and steadies improvement in their overall condition. Sustained constitutional structures and behavioral norms which guide the actions of decision-makers and political representation and all its attributes are necessary to strengthen the functional state. The functional state seeks to eliminate systematic denial of entitlements to resources and services, remove impediments to participate on equal terms in social, economic, political and cultural arenas, and create an enabling environment for transformation.


The 52nd annual conference of the Liberian Studies Association (LSA) will focus on an array of questions and issues through multidisciplinary presentations that will strive to construct a road map for the creation of the functional Liberian state.

Sub-themes include:

History and Lessons Learnt                                      Arts, Culture and Development

Education, Brain Drain and Development               Health, Inequality and Well-Being

Reconciliation and Justice                                        Youth and Social Change

Environment                          Security                       Civil Society

Access to Justice                   Financial Inclusion     Gender


Call for Papers and Guidelines for Submitting Roundtable Panel Proposals:

The Liberian Studies Association invites panels, roundtables and papers that critically examine scholarship on all factors that address the theme of the conference.  We seek empirical, theoretical, review, practical, applied, and policy papers on how to construct, develop and or sustain all aspects of the functional state.


The LSA Abstract Review Committee will review only complete proposals using the following criteria:

relevance and significance to conference theme; the rigor of the analysis; potential for practical, policy-oriented, tangible, innovative and transformative outcomes;  the extent to which proposals reflect diverse perspectives, innovations, disciplines, and strategies for change; and the significance of the conclusions as well as their relevance to issues affecting Liberia. Conference presentations will receive special consideration for publication in the LSJ.


Individual Paper Proposal:  Individuals wishing to propose papers must send an 8-10 page early draft (excluding references) by January 10th, 2020 paper abstract. It should consist of a statement about the topic, the nature and extent of the research, a brief summary of the main argument(s), and the name, institutional affiliation, address and contact information [email and telephone].  

Proposal(s) for Panel Topics: A panel has a chair, no more than four paper presenters, and a discussant. A panel proposal consists of the panel title and abstract along with the names, email addresses, phone numbers and institutional affiliations for each participant on the panel.

Deadline for early draft is January 10th, 2020.  Following proposal review by the LSA Abstract Review Committee, presenters will receive a notice of either confirmation or rejection.   There are limited (6) awards for free registration.  To qualify, presenters must submit completed papers and pay the registration fee by March 30th, 2020. All proposals (other than the Emerging Scholars proposals) should be sent to or


Completed  registration is required to attend and present papers at the conference. General Registration is $100.00  -  Registered students - $50.00   Retirees/ Community members: $75.00

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