Established in 1988, the African Economic Research Consortium is a capacity building institution to inform economic policies in sub-Saharan Africa. The launch of AERC goes back to the late 1980s, when a small group of Africanists and African scholars began to recognize the disconnect between economic policy making and economic research in sub-Saharan Africa. Available research results, applied to other economies, did not always seem appropriate to the African context. And where such results were available, they were too often not put to use.
AERC has three primary components: research, training and policy outreach. The organization integrates economic policy research, postgraduate training and policy outreach within a network of researchers, universities and policy makers in Africa and worldwide.