Thursday, January 17, 2019
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About CIR

Brief History/Mission

Established in 1997 as a public policy advocacy organisation, The Centre for Intellectual Renewal (CIR) was originally a subsidiary of the IADKA Media Consultancy, a registered organisation in Ghana until 2006 when it became independent.

It engages in a) Culture and Economic Development b) Rural, Environmental and Health Development c) Local/Municipal-Governance Research both on advocacy and consultation basis. These core strands also seek to create a forum for accessibility of academic/intellectual research findings for the public and private sectors through seminars, post-research round-table discussions, book launches and the publication of a quarterly newsletter.

The CIR also operates a fully equipped TV Production Unit specialising in historical, cultural and economic documentaries for both local and foreign companies and also as a mobile rental facility.

Previous Events

The CIR either alone or with other think-tanks, grant-awarding institutions, collaborates on programmes which have included seminars, policy workshop, joint TV productions, book launches etc.
i)    Centre for Democracy and Development and Centre for Intellectual Renewal (1999) Seminar on Human  Rights, Guest Speaker, Prof. Larry Diamond, Hoover Institution, Stanford University.
ii)    Public Affairs Department of the U.S. Embassy and Centre for Intellectual Renewal (1997) The Legacy of W.E.B. Du Bois, Guest Speaker, Prof. Kwame Anthony Appiah, Harvard University, Cambridge, MA.
iii)    The British Council and The Centre for Intellectual Renewal, Launch of Bu Me Be: Akan Proverbs (2001) Guest Speaker, Prof. Ama Ata Aidoo, Brown University, USA. Nana Dr. S.K. B. Asante, former President, Ghana Academy of Arts and Sciences and  Prof. Emeritus J.H. Kwabena Nketia, President of International Music   Centre, Legon.


The Martyrs of Uganda (1997) by The Rt. Rev. Dr. Peter Akwasi Sarpong, Archbishop of Kumasi.
The Ashanti Monarch in Exile (1999) reprinted as Yaa Asantewaa-The Heroism of an African Queen (2007) by Ivor Agyeman-Duah.
Bu Me Be: Akan Proverbs (2002) by Peggy Appiah, Kwame Anthony Appiah and Ivor Agyeman-Duah.
Between Faith and History-A Biography of J.A. Kufuor (Ayebia Clarke Press Ltd, Oxfordshire, U.K. and endorsement of The Arts Council of England). Launched in Accra, Ghana by Nobel Laureate Wole Soyinka.

TV Productions

a) BBC/PBS- Into Africa and Wonders of the African World (1999) presented by Henry Louis Gates, Jnr. (Contributed to production team).
b) CIR/SBC- Yaa Asantewaa-The Heroism of an African Queen (2001) produced in conjunction with the Seychelles Broadcasting Corporation (SBC), premiered at  Chatham House, and The Imperial War Museum, London.
c) CIR- Roland Oliver -In the Realm of Gold (2006).
d) CIR- Wole Soyinka: Muses of Writing and Yoruba Mythology (2007).


Future TV Documentaries

a) The Porcupine Builds its House with Quills-A Development Initiative of the Asante King. [Promoting Partnership with Traditional Authorities Project (PPTAP) - The Asanteman Council and The World Bank.

b) In a Forest Each Tree has its branches –The Economic History of Ghana, 1983-2008 [a documentary that looks at the Ghanaian economic from 1983 to 2008 a period that together with the Bretton Woods institutions has seen the engagement of a liberal economy practice since 1957. The documentary assess whether the economy has been better of then in previous times when the State controlled it.]

c) Golden Tower: The Ghana Academy of Arts and Sciences and National Development .[ a documentary to be shown in Ghana and Europe that looks at the contribution (of the first academy of arts and sciences in Africa founded by Kwame Nkrumah in 1959) to the intellectual and socio-economic development of Ghana half a century later.]

Staff & Resident Consultants

 a) Ivor Agyeman-Duah, President/CEO - Ivor Agyeman-Duah’s interests are in the areas of communication, culture and economic development. He is a member of the secretariat of The World Bank Institute in Washington, DC looking at the role of African Diaspora in economic development and in other public policy work, is an advisor to The Andrew Mellon Foundation, New York on its Africa programme, Ituka-Aluka. Previously, he had been Head of Public Affairs Department, Ghana Embassy in Washington, DC and the Ghana High Commission in London. Agyeman-Duah is also the Executive Secretary of The Kufuor Biographical Project an education supporting and a mobile think tank based at Exeter College, Oxford University and Ghana.

In academia, he has been Visiting-Scholar-in Residence at The College of Arts and Letters, California State University, Pomona and The League of Women’s Voters Visiting Writer at the University of Nebraska. Among his seven published books include: Some African Voices of Our Time (1996); Bu Me Be: Akan Proverbs (2002, with Peggy Appiah and Kwame Anthony Appiah) an African leading dictionary of proverbs; Pan African-Caribbean Connections (2007). Other writings apart from over 200 journalism features and essays in leading international magazines and development media are book chapters and essays in such referred journals as African and Asia Studies(Netherlands); African Affairs, Journal of the Royal Africa Society, London, International Affairs, Journal of The Royal Institute of International Affairs, Chatham House.

Agyeman-Duah was a research scholar at The W.E.B. Du Bois Institute for Africa and African America Research at Harvard University and holds degrees from The School of Oriental and African Studies, London and the University of Wales.


b) Zagba Oyortey- Culture and Economic Development - Has over 15 years experience of working in both the tangible and intangible aspects of cultural heritage and linking these to socio-economic development. He has managed cultural groups and projects, training of personnel in management and also developing policies for the cultural sector. Among others he worked on : Workshop on Methodologies for Enhancing the Contemporary Use of African Artefacts: British Museum, 2006; Rethinking the adaptation of African Stories from Television : South Africa Broadcasting Corporation, 2006; African Creative Industries in the Context of the International Centre for the Creative Industries: Bahia, 2005; Arts Organisation in Acton, London and their role within the cultural economy of Ealing Borough, London, 2003; Best Value Review of Creative Industries in Greenwich: London, 2003.

Zagba has been a consultant to The British Museum since 2006 where he provides advice on the Museum’s Africa Programme. In this role he has been involved in defining research priorities and developing exhibition programmes. These include, The Fabric of a Nation: Textiles and Identity in Ghana, a joint project between the University of Ghana and The British Museum, 2007.

In 2005, Zagba was a member of the Brazilian government’s initiative to launch the International Centre for Creative Industries in Salvador de bahia. He is a member of the UNESCO supported Maputo based Observatory for Cultural Policies in Africa (OCPA). He contributed to OCPA’s publication: Cultural Indicators of Development: an African Perspective, which was presented at The World Congress on Cultural Rights held in Barcelona in 2004.

Zagba has worked for The Arts Council of England as a researcher and advisor and has been Arts Officer for Greenwich Council, and Executive Director of Adzido, then the largest culturally diverse performing company in Europe. He produced in collaboration with Ivor Agyeman-Duah, the epic musical Yaa Asantewaa Warrior Queen.
Zagba has published widely in journals and magazines on African and Caribbean arts in U.K. He has a BA in Politics and Philosophy from the University of Ghana and an MA in Arts Policy and Management from the City University of London.


c)  Kojo S. Amanor, Rural, Environmental and Health Development –  Professor of African Studies at the Institute of African Studies, University of Ghana, he is currently a Visiting Professor at Cambridge University and previously at Birmingham and other overseas universities. He is also the Director of the Decentralised Environmental Action and Rural Development project (DEAR), located in Ghana with the Overseas Development Institute of the U.K. Government as collaborators. He is the author of among other books, The New Frontier: Farmers’ Response to Land Degradation- A West African Study (1994); Science and the Policy Process: Perspective from the Forest co-author, IDS  33 No1.; Global Restructuring and Land Rights in Ghana (1999); Cultivating Knowledge-Genetic Diversity, Farmer Experimentation and Crop Research (1993)and numerous book chapters and articles including influential ones such as: Land Tenure and Resource Access in West Africa- Share Contracts in the Oil Palm and Citrus Belt of Ghana (2001); Land , Labour and the family in Southern Ghana (2000).
He had his PhD in Anthropology from University College, London and graduate studies at The School of Oriental and African Studies, London


d) Joseph Boateng, Associate, Operations- A Member of the Chartered Institute of Marketing (UK) and an affiliate Member of the Institute of Public Relations (Ghana). Over the last 6 years, he has been involved in special projects for the Yankah and Associates (as a marketing and communication officer) ; CIR and other international organisations including as liaise officer for the BBC’s coverage of Ghana 50th independence anniversary and First Magazine, an official report for the Africa Union in Ghana. He studied at the University of Ghana for a BA in Psychology.