The Legon Centre for International Affairs and Diplomacy (LECIAD) was purposely established in 1989 by the University as an institute for the study of International Relations and Diplomacy at the request of Ghana’s Foreign Ministry. LECIAD has since become a cosmopolitan academic institute and community providing intensive training to students preparing for vocations addressing national, international and global challenges relating to security, human rights, environment, natural resources, trade and finance among others.
The Centre’s philosophy and approach to teaching and research is to empower students to understand the past and the challenges of our present world. LECIAD’s innovative approach to teaching and studying has earned it a reputation as a dynamic and prestigious institute for studies in international affairs. Contemporary challenges are complex and call for new approaches, mould-breaking alliances, and multi-disciplinary approach to train students to become policy shapers in local, national, regional and worldwide agencies and organisations to play influential roles in contemporary international affairs. LECIAD focuses on addressing some of the persistent and emerging challenges such as the environment, security, governance, gender crises facing Africa. The Centre’s courses and values are thus shaped by the history of Ghana as Africa’s political liberation forerunner, and doyen of democracy and good governance. Africa’s standing in the global political economy informs the Centre’s adoption of a problem-solving multidisciplinary approach to the study of international affairs. The Centre thus combines theory and research in order to address issues of critical importance to Ghana, Africa, the developing world, as well as to the international community at large. Throughout its existence, LECIAD has explored the Ghanaian and African perspective in International Affairs by contributing to public discourse and sensitising the general public on problems confronting Africans, both on the continent and in the Diasporas.
Our flagship MA programme in International Affairs has over the years attracted candidates from the continent and beyond, and has produced an alumni body, many of whom have gone on to join international public service, high level national civil and public services and international Non-Governmental Organizations among others. Our new PhD offering continues to attract strong interest in alumni and other interested persons.
As part of our mandate for providing opportunities for continuing education through workshops, conferences, seminars, symposia, and occasional lectures, we have since 2002, been engaged in several capacity development activities. These include activities that contribute to enhancing legislative oversight in democratic governance and foreign policy. In collaboration with the United Nations, the African Union and the Economic Community of West African States, among others, we have developed and provided training in areas such as diplomacy, negotiation, mediation and election management. The Centre has also been engaged in the development of civilian capacities for participation in peace support operations. Working with the continent’s multilateral economic and security organisations, the Centre has made invaluable contributions to the development of Africa’s peace and security landscape.
The Centre undertakes different types of consultancies in the area of peace and security. Through its publications, the LEJIAD; Conflict Watch it has maintained a discourse on issues of import in the discipline of International Affairs, and sought to affect public policy in its Policy Brief Series. Our special designation as an academic institution with strategic links to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration makes us the ideal choice for curriculum development, training and the coordination of high-level meetings.
As a multi-disciplinary and innovative research Centre delivering education to a diverse student body of civil servants, legislators, social entrepreneurs, non-profit executives, security officers, advocates, intellectuals and would-be leaders through a variety of modes, LECIAD complements its high calibre and distinguished core faculty strength with scholars from other departments within the University such as, Economics, Political Science, Administration, and the natural and medical sciences, as well as from the Foreign Service Establishment. The Centre also hosts a number of visiting scholars.
LECIAD is housed in a magnificent building on the main University of Ghana campus. The building is a modern landmark edifice generously funded by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. The Complex boasts of the following facilities: lecture and conference theatres; auditorium, Library; staff offices; a computer laboratory, audio-visual rooms, students’ common room, and a restaurant.