Umuganda: Rwanda's cleaning economy: socioeconomic development and poverty alleviation mediated through public clean up programmes





Theme: Umuganda: Rwanda’s cleaning economy:

Socioeconomic development and poverty alleviation mediated through public clean up programmes



Dr. Michael Sanja: Deputy-Vice Chancellor (Institutional Development, Research & Innovation), University of Kigali

Dr. Ronald Kwena: Dean Graduate School, University of Kigali

Rwanda is an exceptionally clean country; public roads are clean, dirt roads are clean, public spaces are clean. Cleaning in Rwanda takes place at an industrial scale, literally and metaphorically. Although the cleanliness of the country is much spoken for in public discourse, the economic contributions of Rwanda’s cleaning initiatives have not been considered a serious topic in the literature. Therefore, this JEI Special Issue seeks to correct this anomaly and position Rwanda’s clean-up programme in its proper perspective as a socioeconomic development vehicle. In fact, Rwanda has built a big economy through cleaning up – new jobs, new businesses, new laws, new social norms, new practices, and a new culture all have grown out of the gusukura and umuganda (public cleaning programmes). Most importantly, the Rwanda experience could and should serve as a model for the rest of Africa and developing nations that have been incapacitated by urban filth and unemployment.

Against this background, this JEI Special Issue invites students, academics, scholars, practitioners, and policymakers to submit contributions that will enrich knowledge, debates, and discourse on this important but under-rated indigenous African solution to African problem – cleaning for socioeconomic development.

Submissions are welcome to address the following thematic areas:
  • Entrepreneurial opportunities emerging from Umuganda
  • Economic contribution of Umuganda to the Rwanda economy
  • Innovations that emerged from Umuganda
  • Innovative business practices that have emerged from complying with the Umuganda
  • Marketing competitiveness and dividends from a clean environment
  • Environmental beautification (including planting trees, flowers) as part of cleaning up
  • Tourism: to see Africa’s clean city
  • National parks’ upgrades and environmental protection
  • Green economy and lowering carbon footprint
  • Clean and renewable energies related to a clean environment
  • Supply chain of the cleaning economy
  • Employment creation through Umuganda clean-ups
  • Poverty alleviation through Umuganda clean-ups
  • linking Rwanda’s clean up initiatives to microfinance
  • The impact of public clean-up on anti-corruption
  • Public’s perceptions of clean up programmes
  • Waste management for a cleaner environment
  • Recycling for a cleaner environment
  • Clean environment and public health


  • Lessons for other African and developing countries
  • Any other topic related to the clean up
  • Contribution of Umuganda to SME development
  • Umuganda and project development
About JEI

The Journal of Entrepreneurial Innovations (JEI) is hosted by the University of the Western Cape. The JEI is a free-access, free to publish online journal that specialises in publishing research and analyses pertaining to entrepreneurship, innovations, small businesses, and trends and dynamics in small markets. As a multi- and inter-disciplinary journal, the JEI examines advances and trends affecting markets, business, and commerce in the developing world. It seeks to enhance scholastic discourse in the areas of accounting, development finance, general management, leadership, microfinance, entrepreneurship, small business management, management information systems, innovations, business law, marketing, project management, poverty alleviation, sustainable development, and ethics, among others. Above all, the journal seeks to provide greater dissemination of information and knowledge in these disciplines.

Publication policy

The JEI is a double blind peer-reviewed journal that is published as an open-access online journal. One volume constituting two issues is published once a year. The types of papers published include:

Original Article

An original article provides an overview of innovative research in a particular field within or related to the focus and scope of the journal, presented according to a clear and well-structured format.

Research papers: these report on empirical and scientific studies that provide new insight into theory, practice as well as methodologies applied to reach and verify findings of important concerns within emerging markets. Although no strict length requirements are stipulated for this type of publication, research papers usually range from 4, 000 words to 6, 000 words (approx. 10 - 14 manuscript pages).

Conceptual papers: submission of conceptual papers (i.e., not yet empirically tested) is also encouraged. Submissions of this nature often includes the examination of novel theories, concepts, and ideas.

Reviews: the journal also seeks to publish reviews of various publications including books, articles, and other contemporary phenomena. Generally, reviews are shorter in length, at approximately 2 to 4 manuscript pages.

Technical Reports: are usually written for a non-academic audience such as business managers and practitioners. The emphasis of technical reports is to encourage the dissemination of practical knowledge, which is of great importance but rarely published. These publications can range from 2 to 5 pages.

Case studies: these are specific in-depth analyses of individual phenomena, businesses, or events. Case studies allow for a detailed introspection into a single phenomenon that facilitates problem solving.

Conference Special Issues: in certain instances, approved conference proceedings will be published in the Journal of Entrepreneurial Innovations as a Special Issue. All papers presented at such conferences will be published after going through the normal (double-blind) review process.

Doctoral proposals: as a means to promote publication of research and scientific material, the Journal of Entrepreneurial Innovations will also accept doctoral research proposals for publications. Given that PhD candidates in the developing world have limited research experience and not too many options to publish their work, this journal provides this platform as a research mentorship and training platform. Qualified supervisors will provide constructive feedback and the concerned candidates will be afforded the opportunity to improve on their proposals and theses.

For more information, please contact the Editorial Office on Thank you very much.


Editor                                                                                      Editor

Prof. Richard Shambare                                                            Prof. Zivanayi Nyandoro