Editor's note

Meet Mini mum, Mini scule and Mini ature: three of the five new mini frog species that have been discovered in Madagascar. Some are so tiny they’re smaller than a thumbnail. Mark D Scherz explains that the frogs belong to three different groups, revealing that the evolution of miniature frogs in Madagascar is more dynamic than previously thought.

South Africa has been hit by rolling power blackouts in recent weeks. It was a reminder of the precarious state of the country’s power supply. Two interventions have been put on the table for the giant state-owned power utility Eskom. One is a major injection of cash, the other is a restructuring plan. Seán Mfundza Muller sets out what’s missing.

Moina Spooner

Commissioning Editor: East Africa

Top Stories

An adult male “Mini mum”, one of the world’s smallest frogs, rests on a fingernail with room to spare. Dr Andolalao Rakotoarison

Meet the mini frogs of Madagascar – the new species we’ve discovered

Mark D Scherz, Technical University Braunschweig

The largest of these frogs could sit happily on your thumbnail. The smallest is just longer than a grain of rice.

A barman using candle light as another rolling blackout affects large parts of South Africa’s biggest city, Johannesburg. Epa/Kim Ludbrook

Why restructuring South Africa’s power utility won’t end the blackouts

Seán Mfundza Muller, University of Johannesburg

South Africa isn't having an honest debate about proposals to fix its power utility Eskom, and the role that renewables might play.

Politics + Society

‘Self-reliance’ for refugees? Badly handled it can make matters worse

Evan Easton-Calabria, University of Oxford

Refugee self-reliance is a laudable goal, yet self-reliance agendas must account for refugees' individual circumastnces.

Algeria: how peaceful protests can change a troubled nation

Abdelbaqi Ghorab, Lancaster University

Algerians are working to change their future while avoiding the bloodshed of their past.

Why ending HIV still rests on a working cure – as well as prevention

Linda-Gail Bekker, University of Cape Town

Until then we need to get effective, accessible treatment for all who need it, while deploying the many prevention tools at our disposal.

How sports science in Africa can be taught and thought about differently

Francois Cleophas, Stellenbosch University

The Greek body - white, muscular, masculine and middle class - dominated as an ideal type. This dominance continues today.

From our international editions

The Matrix 20 years on: how a sci-fi film tackled big philosophical questions

Richard Colledge, Australian Catholic University

Cult film The Matrix was released 20 years ago this month. From Plato to Baudrillard, the film explored philosophical dilemmas we are still wrestling with today.

Brexit Q+A: Theresa May offers to stand down as British prime minister, but there’s a catch

Tom Quinn, University of Essex

The prime minister has told her MPs that if they back her deal, she will leave office before the next stage of the Brexit process begins.

How single women are driving gentrification in Hong Kong and elsewhere

Igor Vojnovic, Michigan State University; Minting Ye, Michigan State University

A new study examined how growing numbers of single women in one of the world's most expensive cities are contributing to its gentrification.

China’s ‘Silk Road urbanism’ is changing cities from London to Kampala – can locals keep control?

Jonathan Silver, University of Sheffield; Alan Wiig, University of Massachusetts Boston

China is funding global infrastructure projects to expand its influence and capacity for economic growth.

En français

Diaspora et mobilité : enrichir la recherche africaine

Luc Ngwé, Université Paris Descartes – USPC; Hamidou Dia, Institut de recherche pour le développement (IRD)

La mobilité des étudiants africains est essentielle au développement d’une pensée intellectuelle africaine fondée sur l’échange avec la diaspora et l’engagement des universitaires africains.

Comment les athlètes s’adaptent et bénéficient des conditions environnementales extrêmes ?

Franck Brocherie, Institut national du sport de l'expertise et de la performance (INSEP)

Pour être un athlète de très haut niveau, il faut pouvoir être performant dans tous les environnements climatiques.


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