Regional integration holds many promises, generates many fears, and results in many disappointments. This is because levels of ambitions often differ among regional partners and among domestic actors, and do not match implementation realities. These dimensions are traditionally overlooked when dealing with regional integration, where the focus is generally on institutional settings, policy design and technical capacities. To remedy such a short-sighted approach, it is thus necessary to pay greater attention to the various dynamics that shape and affect regional integration. This issue of GREAT Insights brings together a number of insights and perspectives on some of these characteristics and dimensions that shape various regional integration initiatives in Africa.