Philani Mthembu is Executive Director at the Institute for Global Dialogue. Prior to joining the IGD, he pursued a joint doctoral programme (Dr. rer. pol.) with the Graduate School of Global Politics, Freie Universität Berlin (Germany), and the School of International Studies at Renmin University, Beijing (China). The focus of his dissertation was on the rise of emerging powers as sources of development cooperation in Africa, for which he was awarded Magna Cum Laude.
He co-founded the Berlin Forum on Global Politics (BFoGP), a non-profit organisation dedicated to the promotion of academic, expert, and public understanding of global politics. While completing his Masters in International Relations at the University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, he headed the Academic Development Programme for first year students and was elected as the first independent candidate to the Student Representative Council (SRC). His recent publications include a single authored book titled 'China and India's Development Cooperation in Africa: The Rise of Southern Powers', and a co-edited book titled 'From MDGs to Sustainable Development Goals: The Travails of International Development'.