In his presentation, Carlos Milani will introduce an analytical framework that shall contribute to understanding how and why rising powers engage in development cooperation with African countries. The framework encompasses hard and soft institutions (organizations, norms, discourses, visions, practices) of south-south development cooperation policies of countries such as South Africa, China, India, Brazil and Turkey. The timing is particularly conducive to discuss this topic, since such countries have begun to invest as emergent donors, both quantitatively and qualitativel, in several development sectors (public health, formal education and university cooperation, non-formal education, technical assistance projects, agricultural development, etc.) and in partnership with multilateral organizations, OCE-DAC donors and international businesses coming from their own countries. Their increasingly important role in south-south cooperation is not, however, without contradictions, especially regarding practices, discourses, visions and institutional constructions of these “rising states” in the African continent.