A bibliography of applications of operational research in West Africa



There is considerable interest in the potential for using operational research (O.R.) in developing countries. One sign of this is the formation of new societies for O.R. scientists in countries and regions where no such society had existed. Since 2003, such societies have been formed in several parts of Africa. This paper focuses on West Africa, and presents a bibliography of papers relating to applications of O.R. in the nations of this part of the continent. The paper describes the way in which the bibliography was collated and discusses the overall picture that the list of papers presents of the state of O.R. in the 18 countries that are considered.

1. Introduction

In 2009, the International Federation of Operational Research Societies (IFORS) will celebrate its 50th birthday. This federation, which began with a handful of national societies in 1959, now has 48 members. For a great part of its life, IFORS has encouraged its member societies to assist in developing operational research (O.R.) in countries where there is no recognized professional group of experts in O.R. Most, but not all, of these countries are in the developing world.

As far as the author is aware, there has been no systematic listing of O.R. literature on a country-by-country basis for many parts of the less-industrialized world. Such a list would be useful for the pioneers of the discipline in countries where professional groups or societies have not yet, or have recently, been formed. This paper is an attempt to provide a brief introduction to the literature of applications of O.R. in West Africa.

There are several reasons for making West Africa the focus of such a study. The three most important are as follows: first, the nations of this region form a geographical unity of independent states, with internal economic links. Second, the first years of the 21st century have seen the formation of two groupings of O.R. professionals in the region: INFORN, the Institute for O.R. in Nigeria, and ROCARO, the Réseau de l'Ouest et du Centre de l'Afrique pour la Recherche Opérationelle. (Although the latter is nominally a grouping for all countries in the region, it is primarily concerned with the French-speaking nations.) Third, there is no journal of O.R. published in the region, and therefore the literature is scattered in many different journals.

This paper is about that literature. Inevitably the bibliography is incomplete, but the extent of the list produced here is encouraging. In the next section, there is a brief description of how the material was collected, and this should serve as a guide to future researchers concerned with compiling a literature review to extend this, or to supplement it by studying other regions of the world.

2. Compiling the list

2.1. Defining West Africa

There is no universal notion of which countries form the region “West Africa.” The author adopted a pragmatic approach, and decided that the 17 countries included in the Lonely Planet guidebook were an appropriate set. The guidebook did not include Gabon, but several of the references treated Gabon as being similar in nature to those in the book, so this nation was added. The guidebook treated the Cape Verde Islands as part of the region, although the climate and environment of islands are different from those of the continental landmass. The islands were retained in the list.

The United Nations definition is almost identical, except that Gabon and the Cameroon are left out. Cameroon is a leading member of ROCARO.

2.2. Defining O.R.

Aggarwal (1994) has pointed out that the concept of O.R. in developing countries is different from that found in the developed world. The term “O.R.” may not be used to describe the approach being taken. Decision-makers have different assumptions from those familiar in “traditional” O.R. methodology. Aggarwal writes: “The primary objective pursued in each case was to make the situation tolerable for as many people as possible.”

From the outset, for this paper, therefore, the author determined that the bibliography would not be a study of papers written by authors from those 18 countries. The scope was determined to be papers that describe a case study or a practical example of O.R. in a country, part of a country, or several countries, and which develops methodology for

  • 1“What if?” questions or
  • 2“Science of Better” questions

both of which may make the situation being studied “more tolerable.”

The question of whether or not the results had been implemented was initially considered as a criterion for inclusion in the bibliography. However, very few papers describe the implementation of the results; the value for the researcher in case studies is found in the fact that another scholar has experienced the social and cultural setting of the region, when collecting data, dealing with decision-makers, and constructing and using models.

2.3. Sources of information about published papers

To compile the list of papers, the author used a variety of sources. The principal ones were:

  • International Abstracts in Operations Research,
  • Google Scholar,
  • ISI Web of Science,
  • previous bibliographies and
  • other online databases.

2.3.1. International Abstracts in Operations Research

The International Abstracts in Operations Research (IAOR) is published by IFORS as a print and online database (IAOR-Online) of abstracts of papers on the theory and practice of O.R. Each year it records between 3500 and 4000 abstracts, from between 40 and 50 journals that are abstracted cover-to-cover, and from a further 200 to 300 journals that are inspected and selected material is taken. Since 1992, IAOR has had a classification for developing countries, which means that every paper considered to be concerned with practice or techniques in a developing country should be readily identifiable. It is reasonably straightforward to locate all the papers with that classification, using IAOR-Online, and that allows one to download the abstracts as well. However, IAOR is not consistent in the way that it divides papers within the group; some show a particular country, some show a continent, some do not give any precise identification about which “developing country” is referred to.

A significant problem with IAOR is that it is geared towards the international literature, and the main source of its contents is the core literature of Operational Research. Applications in developing countries are not well covered by the mainstream O.R. literature.

2.3.2. Google Scholar

For many academic users, the facility and user-friendliness of Google Scholar encourage one to use it. However, Google is searching among the millions of papers on the Internet, and its searches do not recognize “OR” as a search term, because it is a “stop word” used for the logic of searches. Added to this problem is the fact that many papers on O.R. do not actually use that expression; instead they describe the process and methodology of O.R. or they describe the use of one or more techniques from those used in O.R. methodology. Furthermore, when papers refer to a geographical setting, the reference may be inadequate for detection by electronic search tools. Although “everyone knows” that Lagos is in Nigeria, for example, an O.R. paper with applications in Lagos may never mention Nigeria and so a search for “Nigeria” would omit such a paper. The problem is particularly noticeable as papers that are about particular countries may never mention the continent – everyone knows that Ghana is in Africa, so why do you bother to say so?

2.3.3. Previous bibliographies

The Journal of the O.R. Society (UK) (Rand, 1986) and the European Journal of O.R. (Bornstein et al., 1990) have both published special issues on O.R. in developing countries. Neither of these issues gave a systematic bibliography. The citations in each gave a limited view of the subject. There appears to be one attempt to create a bibliography for all developing countries (Ehie et al., 1988), which includes Asian and Latin American countries as well as Africa. A survey of O.R. in Nigeria (Ehie and Smith, 1994a) identified some papers and later correspondence (Smith and Ogbu, 1994; Ehie and Smith, 1994b) supplemented this.

2.3.4. Online databases

Many libraries provide access to the Web of Science and this was useful in the same way as Google Scholar was. The publisher Elsevier maintains an archive of their journals, which may be searched (Scopus). A great many journals maintain electronic archives of tables of contents, and offer email alerts as fresh issues appear. The latter are useful for the current literature, and for searching the significant number of smaller journals that do not appear in the Web of Science. There are also journals that specialize in a combination of developing countries and quantitative methods, such as the Electronic Journal of Information Systems in Developing Countries (EJISDC), World Development and World Health and Population. There are also accessible directories of theses submitted for research degrees.

2.3.5. Serendipity

Part of the collection in this paper was found by happy chance (serendipity). Finding a publication by an author prompted a web search for further papers by the same author, or highlighted journals, which proved to be relevant.

2.3.6. A broad search

The hunt for evidence of O.R. activity began with the mainstream literature of the subject. This led to a wide range of journals, few of which are on the regular reading lists of O.R. scientists. Some publications came from national or international organizations whose research programmes occasionally model “What if?” questions. Some of these organizations maintain offices in West Africa. Just as there are no lists of publications relating to O.R. in the region, there are no lists of research and development organizations that are active in these countries.

3. The evidence

The bibliography now contains over 275 papers. What is the nature of these, and how are they distributed? Researchers may be concerned about what problem has been considered (topic) and/or what country or countries the work relates to. Table 1 shows the count of papers by topics. Table 2 shows the count by countries. The totals do not completely tally because some papers cover several topics or countries. Because one might expect larger countries to feature in more papers, Table 3 shows the number of papers per country divided by the square root of the population, and then mapped to the range (0, 100). (The square root is taken to reflect the observation that many national outputs grow more slowly than population; IFORS uses the square root in its voting rules.)

Table 1. 
Count by topics
TopicCount (from 279)
Agriculture and food129
Economics and management41
Water resources and irrigation30
Information technology12
Waste management3
Network planning1
Table 2. 
Count by countries
Nigeria96Cote d'Ivoire15Sierra Leone4
Mali32The Gambia10Cape Verde2
Burkina Faso26Benin7Guinea-Bissau1
Table 3. 
Count divided by sqrt(population) by countries, scaled to (0,100)
Nigeria87Niger38Sierra Leone18
The Gambia84Cote d'Ivoire38Guinea-Bissau8
Senegal81Cape Verde30Liberia6
Burkina Faso74Benin26Togo4

4. The missing evidence

4.1. Surprises: topics

There are few surprises about the most popular subjects for papers. Agriculture is the predominant industry of West Africa (and most developing countries). There are well-developed models for land-use and crop development. There are many European agricultural research stations collaborating with developing countries.

Health and water resources are also prominent. Again, the high rank is understandable. These are priorities for many African countries, especially with the epidemic of AIDS, the shortage of water and the difficulty of providing good sanitation.

The topic of economics is also not surprising; there is a well-developed field of economics whose application area is the under-developed nations, with regular journals, conferences and all that go with these.

The second group of five topics includes several matters that are of wide interest to developing countries; energy, government and transport are components of an infrastructure. Information technology has provided solutions for communications in many such countries, and there are numerous instances where questions of location need to be solved.

But in the final group, one should ask why there is so little O.R. applied to forestry in West Africa? And why so little to problems of education?

4.2. Surprises: countries

The imbalance between countries is surprising. The large countries have been relatively well served already by published O.R. papers. But the smaller countries have been overlooked. Even though the numbers of papers in the final column of Table 2 are small, Table 3 shows that there ought to be twice as many papers about O.R. in Niger to make it comparable with its neighbours, Nigeria and Burkina Faso. And there ought to be four or five times as many papers about O.R. in Sierra Leone, and 20 times as many about the subject in Togo to make these countries comparable with those in the first column of Table 3; the discrepancy is considerable, despite the similarities of society, situation and climate.

This leads to the question: who will be the pioneers for O.R. in Liberia, Togo, Sierra Leone, Guinea and Guinea-Bissau?

5. Cross-references

For the convenience of other researchers, the following section shows the themes of the papers in the bibliography organized by country and topic.

5.1. Benin

5.1.1. Agriculture and food

(Adégbidi, 2003), (Adégbidi et al., 2004), (Langyintuo et al., 2005), (Minot and Daniels, 2005).

5.1.2. Health

(Levy-Bruhl et al., 1997).

5.1.3. Information technology

(Bollou, 2006), (Ngwenyama et al., 2006).

5.2. Burkina Faso

5.2.1. Agriculture and food

(Barbier, 1998), (Barbier et al., 2004), (Delgado and McIntire, 1982), (Freidberg, 1997), (Ingramand et al., 2002), (Jaeger and Matlon, 1990), (Langyintuo et al., 2005), (Maatman, 2000), (Maatman et al., 2002), (Noordwijk et al., 1995), (Roth et al., 1990), (Sanders et al., 1990), (Schweigman et al., 1998), (Zimmerman and Carter, 1999), (Zimmerman and Carter, 2003), (Zougmoré, 2003).

5.2.2. Economics and management

(MkNelly and Kevane, 2002), (Paxton et al., 2000).

5.2.3. Education

(Michaelowa, 2001).

5.2.4. Government

(Pellow, 2005).

5.2.5. Health

(Cocking et al., 2006), (Cohen, 1998).

5.2.6. Information technology

(Bollou, 2006).

5.2.7. Location

(Cocking et al., 2006).

5.2.8. Poverty

(Bigman et al., 2000).

5.2.9. Transport

(Behrens et al., 2006).

5.2.10. Water resources and irrigation

(Rodgers et al., 2007).

5.3. Cameroon

5.3.1. Agriculture and food

(Benjamin, 1996), (Dounias et al., 2002), (Gockowski and Ndoumbéb, 2004), (Hartwich and Oppen, 2006), (Hyman, 1990), (Langyintuo et al., 2005), (Mayaka et al., 2005), (Ngambeki et al., 1992), (Njiti and Sharpe, 1994), (Page et al., 2001), (Riddell and Campbell, 1986).

5.3.2. Economics and management

(Adenikinju et al., 2002), (Brouder, 2003), (Fonta, 2005).

5.3.3. Education

(Michaelowa, 2001).

5.3.4. Energy

(Kenfack et al., 2001).

5.3.5. Forestry

(Wunder, 2005).

5.3.6. Health

(Cohen, 1998).

5.3.7. Information technology

(Bollou, 2006), (Ngwenyama et al., 2006).

5.3.8. Retailing

(Brouder, 2003).

5.3.9. Transport

(Behrens et al., 2006), (Njoh, 1999).

5.4. Cape Verde

5.4.1. Agriculture and food

(Kenfack et al., 2001).

5.4.2. Health

(Alexander et al., 2003).

5.5. Côte d'Ivoire

5.5.1. Agriculture and food

(Adesina and Ouattara, 2000), (Binam et al., 2003), (Dick et al., 1983), (Langyintuo et al., 2005), (McIntire and Varangis, 1999), (Sahn, 1990).

5.5.2. Economics and management

(Adenikinju et al., 2002), (Kouassy and Bohoun, 1994), (McIntire and Varangis, 1999).

5.5.3. Education

(Michaelowa, 2001).

5.5.4. Energy

(Plane, 1999).

5.5.5. Forestry

(Mendoza and Ayemou, 1992).

5.5.6. Health

(Cohen, 1998), (Cowley, 1993).

5.5.7. Information technology

(Bollou, 2006), (Ngwenyama et al., 2006).

5.5.8. Transport

(Carpenter and Hanssens, 1994).

5.6. Gabon

5.6.1. Agriculture and food

(Langyintuo et al., 2005).

5.6.2. Economics and management

(Marcus, 1960).

5.6.3. Energy

(Brimberg et al., 2003).

5.6.4. Forestry

(Wunder, 2005).

5.6.5. Transport

(Baryla, 1992).

5.7. The Gambia

5.7.1. Agriculture and food

(Braun, 1988), (Brown, 2006), (Dey, 1982).

5.7.2. Health

(Cohen, 1998), (Levin, 1987), (Shahani et al., 1996), (Yamuah, 2001), (Yamuah, 2003).

5.7.3. Information technology

(Fyvie and Ager, 1999), (Yamuah, 2003).

5.7.4. Tourism

(Dieke, 1993).

5.8. Ghana

5.8.1. Agriculture and food

(Abdulai and Huffman, 2000), (Agidi, 1979), (Babu et al., 2000), (Baltussen et al., 2006), (Dansoa et al., 2006), (Langyintuo et al., 2005), (Webber, 2006), (Wiggins et al., 2004), (Yiridoe et al., 2006).

5.8.2. Economics and management

(Addo, 1996), (Amoako-Gyampah, 2003), (Buckley, 1997), (Chand and Moene, 1999), (Chudy, 1994), (Fred-Mensah, 1999), (Ingram and Pearson, 1981), (Lall, 1995), (Paul, 2005), (Pickett et al., 1974).

5.8.3. Energy

(Asiedu and Chen, 1997), (Atta-Konadu and Chen, 1999), (Bergey et al., 2003a), (Bergey et al., 2003b), (Nassen et al., 2002).

5.8.4. Forestry

(Bach, 1999).

5.8.5. Government

(Addo, 1996), (Chand and Moene, 1999), (Chudy, 1994), (Fred-Mensah, 1999), (Weissman, 1990).

5.8.6. Health

(Buor, 2003), (Cohen, 1998), (Heywood and Campbell, 1997), (Hodgson et al., 1998), (Møller-Jensen and Kofie, 2001), (Oppong and Hodgson, 1994), (Oppong and Hodgson, 1998), (Osei et al., 2005), (Yasenovskiy and Hodgson, 2007).

5.8.7. Location

(Buor, 2003), (Heywood and Campbell, 1997), (Hodgson et al., 1998), (Oppong and Hodgson, 1994), (Oppong and Hodgson, 1998).

5.8.8. Retailing

(Overåa, 2006).

5.8.9. Water resources and irrigation

(Akosa et al., 1995), (Clarke et al., 2002), (Doe, 2003), (Rodgers et al., 2007).

5.9. Guinea

5.9.1. Agriculture and food

(Astone, 1998).

5.9.2. Health

(Levy-Bruhl et al., 1997).

5.9.3. Transport

(Altiok, 2000), (Behrens et al., 2006).

5.10. Guinea-Bissau

5.10.1. Health

(Dorros, 1993).

5.11. Liberia

5.11.1. Forestry

(Walker and Nautiyal, 1982).

5.12. Mali

5.12.1. Agriculture and food

(Babu et al., 2000), (Badini et al., 2007), (Bakker et al., 1998), (Bontkes and van Keulen, 2003), (Bosma et al., 1999), (Brossier and Jager, 1984), (Cabanilla et al., 2005), (Delgado and McIntire, 1982), (Dijk, 1997), (Groot and Coulibaly, 1994), (Haefele et al., 2003), (Hengsdijk and van Ittersum, 2002), (Hengsdijk and van Ittersum, 2003), (Hyman, 1991), (Jaeger and Matlon, 1990), (Kaya et al., 2000), (Kruseman and Bade, 1998), (Langyintuo et al., 2005), (Roncoli et al., 2007), (Samaké, 2003), (Staatz et al., 1989), (Van Duivenbooden, 1993), (Van Duivenbooden, 1999), (Van Duivenbooden and Veeneklaas, 1993), (Vitale and Sanders, 2005).

5.12.2. Economics and management

(Diallo, 2006), (Muuka and Mwenda, 2004), (Audibert and Etard, 2003).

5.12.3. Information technology

(Bollou, 2006).

5.12.4. Transport

(Behrens et al., 2006).

5.12.5. Water resources and irrigation

(Van Duivenbooden, 1999), (Venema and Schiller, 1995), (Woodhouse, 2003).

5.13. Mauretainia

5.13.1. Agriculture and food

(Lavy, 1990).

5.13.2. Information technology

(Cohen, 1998).

5.13.3. Water resources and irrigation

(Venema and Schiller, 1995).

5.14. Niger

5.14.1. Agriculture and food

(Abdoulaye and Lowenberg-DeBoer, 2000), (Feil et al., 1995), (Khan, 1994), (Lamers and Bruentrup, 1996), (Lamers et al., 1998), (Langyintuo et al., 2005), (McCarthy and Vanderlinden, 2004), (Ndjeunga and Bationo, 2005), (Rouw, 2004), (Van Duivenbooden, 1999).

5.14.2. Economics and management

(Barlow and Snyder, 1993).

5.14.3. Information technology

(Ngwenyama et al., 2006).

5.14.4. Transport

(Behrens et al., 2006).

5.14.5. Water resources and irrigation

(McCarthy and Vanderlinden, 2004), (Van Duivenbooden, 1999).

5.15. Nigeria

5.15.1. Agriculture and food

(Abdulkadri and Ajibefun, 1998), (Adams, 1993), (Ademosun, 1980), (Ademosun, 1982a), (Ademosun, 1982b), (Ademosun, 1996), (Aderinola et al., 1997), (Agbonlahor et al., 2003), (Akatugba-Ogisi, 1994), (Allison-Oguru, 2004), (Allison-Oguru et al., 2006), (Amadi, 1978), (Amoo, 1992), (Amoo and Smith, 1996), (Berg, 2001), (Carter, 1997), (Daramola and Aiyesan, 1990), (Fogg, 1965), (Gobin et al., 2001), (Goldman and Smith, 1995), (Jabbar et al., 1992), (Jabbar et al., 2002), (Kormawa and Oppen, 2001), (Kushwaha and Ochi, 1999), (Lakshmanan, 1982), (Langyintuo et al., 2005), (Lawal and Ibrahim, 2007), (Omoregie and Thomson, 2001), (Onyenwaku et al., 1983), (Osayimwese, 1974), (Salami and Ilori, 1998), (Sanni et al., 2003), (Smith et al., 1994), (Smith, 1974), (Smock, 1969), (Tre and Lowenberg-Deboer, 2005), (Verinumbe et al., 1985).

5.15.2. Economics and management

(Adenikinju et al., 2002), (Akinyosoye, 1995), (Anandarajan et al., 2000), (Beugré and Offodile, 2001), (Carter, 1997), (Ehie and Smith, 1994a), (Ehie and Smith, 1994b), (Ehikhamenor, 2003), (Foster, 1986), (Habeeb, 1991), (Idowu et al., 2002), (Jabbar et al., 2002), (Msheliza, 1991), (Nyong, 1989), (Ogbu, 1996), (Ogbu and Smith, 1990), (Smith and Ogbu, 1994), (Soyibo et al., 1990), (Soyibo et al., 1991), (Thomas and Adams, 1999).

5.15.3. Education

(Adekola and Ishaya, 1989).

5.15.4. Energy

(Ayodele, 1982), (Ayodele, 1984), (Iwayemi, 1978), (Kalu, 1998).

5.15.5. Forestry

(Aruofor, 1997), (Garcia-De-Ceca and Gebremedhin, 1991).

5.15.6. Government

(Idama, 1984), (Idama and Tomlinson, 1986), (MacManus and Eboh, 1991).

5.15.7. Health

(Adetoro et al., 1991), (Baridam and Uwaga, 1996), (Danbala et al., 2004), (Gray and Ciroma, 1988), (Green and Singer, 1984), (Idowu et al., 2006), (Ikem and Reisman, 1990), (Ojofeitimi et al., 1988), (Okafor, 1990), (Smith, 1974).

5.15.8. Information technology

(Akindale, 1989), (Edem and Lawal, 1997), (Ehikhamenor, 2003), (Idowu et al., 2006), (Idowu et al., 2002), (Mursu et al., 2003).

5.15.9. Location

(Ademosun, 1980), (Ademosun, 1982a), (Ademosun, 1982b), (Ademosun, 1996), (Aderinola et al., 1997), (Agunwamba et al., 2003), (Okafor, 1990), (Onyenwaku et al., 1983), (Salami and Ilori, 1998).

5.15.10. Network planning

(Szuprowicz, 1963).

5.15.11. Retailing

(Melodi, 1989).

5.15.12. Transport

(Amoo, 1992), (Amoo and Smith, 1996), (Fasakin, 2002), (Ogunjumo and Fagbemi, 1991), (Osayimwese, 1974), (Osula and Adebisi, 2001), (Schneerson, 1983), (Soyibo and Adeniran, 1987).

5.15.13. Waste management

(Agunwamba et al., 2003), (Kofoworola, 2007).

5.15.14. Water resources and irrigation

(Acharya and Barbier, 2002), (Adams, 1993), (Adekola and Ishaya, 1989), (Adeoti, 2007), (Adewami, 1983), (Agbede, 1989), (Akatugba-Ogisi, 1994), (Akpabio, 2007), (Idama, 2003), (Onuoha, 1993), (Rufai, 2001), (Sule, 1988), (Thomas and Adams, 1999), (Whittington et al., 1989), (Whittington et al., 1991).

5.16. Senegal

5.16.1. Agriculture and food

(Barbier et al., 2004), (Barnetta and McCarl, 1982), (Barreteau and Bousquet, 2000), (Barreteau et al., 2004), (Bingen et al., 1988), (Bourliaud et al., 1977), (Brown, 2006), (Goetz, 1992), (Rasmussen et al., 1999), (Ribot, 1995), (Sankhayan and Hofstad, 2001), (Warning and Key, 2002).

5.16.2. Economics and management

(Adenikinju et al., 2002).

5.16.3. Education

(Michaelowa, 2001).

5.16.4. Forestry

(Ribot, 1995).

5.16.5. Government

(Weissman, 1990).

5.16.6. Health

(Cohen, 1998), (Doerner et al., 2007), (Jütting, 2004).

5.16.7. Information technology

(Bollou, 2006), (Ngwenyama et al., 2006).

5.16.8. Location

(Doerner et al., 2007).

5.16.9. Transport

(Amoo, 1992), (Amoo and Smith, 1996), (Fasakin, 2002), (Ogunjumo and Fagbemi, 1991), (Osayimwese, 1974), (Osula and Adebisi, 2001), (Schneerson, 1983), (Soyibo and Adeniran, 1987).

5.16.10. Waste management

(Kapepula et al., 2007).

5.16.11. Water resources and irrigation

(Barreteau and Bousquet, 2000), (Barreteau et al., 2004), (Lahtela, 2003), (Rasmussen et al., 1999), (Venema, 1996), (Venema and Schiller, 1995), (Venema et al., 1997).

5.17. Sierra Leone

5.17.1. Economics and management

(Isaac, 1981).

5.17.2. Government

(Fofanah and Al-Hussein, 2005).

5.17.3. Health

(Cohen, 1998), (Renner et al., 2005).

5.17.4. Retailing

(Isaac, 1981).

5.18. Togo

5.18.1. Agriculture and food

(Langyintuo et al., 2005).

5.19. General

5.19.1. Agriculture and food

(Achterbosch and van Tongeren, 2002), (Keating and McCown, 2001), (Kruska et al., 2003), (Meinke et al., 2001), (Nyemeck and Nkamleu, 2006), (Schlecht and Hiernaux, 2004), (Schweigman and Bakker, 1990).

5.19.2. eCommerce

(Molla and Licker, 2005).

5.19.3. Economics and management

(Grzeda and Assogbavi, 1999).

5.19.4. Government

(Sekwat, 1997).

5.19.5. Health

(Okunade, 2005).

5.19.6. Information technology

(Mbarika, 2002), (Molla and Licker, 2005).

5.19.7. Water resources and irrigation

(Rosegrant and Perez, 1997).

6. Availability

Abstracts of most of the papers cited here are available online, and for many, a copy of the complete paper is also provided. The author's website will host a copy of this list with annotations and/or abstracts; this is a long document (about 90 pages).

7. Conclusions

This is work-in-progress. It is not yet complete, and one should argue that it will never be complete. The author would be grateful for further relevant references.

The approach described here will work for other countries and regions, and the journals included in the bibliography will be an aid to anyone wishing to compile a similar bibliography.

The research has also identified countries and topics where there has – so far – been little published work on O.R.; these gaps provide scope for future work.