Youth Participation and Non-violent Resistance in the Democratic Republic of Congo: The Case of LUCHA

This paper presents a case study of the youth movement LUCHA (Lutte pour le changement or 'struggle for change') as an example of leadership for transformational change in DRC. It finds that LUCHA’s horizontal leadership structures and collaborative form of leadership have been instrumental in its success, although at times its leadership style has also created certain divisions within the movement.

While the study focuses primarily on the single case of LUCHA in DRC, it draws on literature that examines youth, horizontal leadership and social movements from around the world, as well as literature on similar African youth movements. It is hoped that this case study will add to the empirical body of evidence on young people as drivers of social change in Africa.

This case study is funded by and published in collaboration with the Institute of African Leadership for Sustainable Development (UONGOZI Institute). It is part of a series of studies exploring transformational leadership in Africa. See the project’s synthesis paper:
Perera, S., Shearon, E. H., Jackson P. & Lyne de Ver, H. (2018) What Enables or Disables Leadership for Transformational Change in Africa? DLP Research Paper 55, Birmingham: Developmental Leadership Program / Dar es Salaam: UONGOZI Institute.

About DLP

The Developmental Leadership Program (DLP) is an international research initiative that explores how leadership, power and political processes drive or block successful development.

DLP focuses on the crucial role of home-grown leaderships and coalitions in forging legitimate political settlements and institutions that promote developmental outcomes, such as sustainable growth, political stability and inclusive social development.

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