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Centre of African Studies: People


Ivan Cuesta-Fernandez

Ivan Cuesta-Fernandez
Ivan Cuesta-Fernandez
Edinburgh UK EH8 9LD
Research Interests
Political Geography: electricity, railways & ports, Comparative sub-national politics

Research Project

Kilowatts, megawatts and power: Electric territorialities of the state in the peripheries of Ghana and Tanzania

In this project I interrogate the political geographies of electrification in the peripheries of African democracies. My aim is to understand the political processes ('the politics of the kilowatts') that shape nascent sub-national regimes of electricity, as well as the political linkages between centre and periphery that structure and are structured by those regimes. In particular, I explore three intertwinning processes: the politics of access, the politics of provision, and the attendant mediations performed by sub-national distribution utilities. To do so, I look at the cases of northern Ghana and southeastern Tanzania starting from the early 1990s and 2000s, respectively.

My research kicked off in September 2012 and the attendant PhD thesis was submitted in October 2017. I carried out fieldwork in Ghana in 2013, and in Tanzania in 2014 and 2015.


Prof. Dr. Paul Nugent

Prof. Dr. Thomas Molony

Latest publications

(full academic curriculum here)

I also publish short research-inspired pieces onto my blog: Electric Territorialities

Academic Qualifications

MA in Politics and Democracy, Spanish Distance Learning University, Spain (2011)

MSc in Power Generation: Renewables, Public University of Navarre (2008)

MA in Development and International Cooperation, Instituto Hegoa, University of the Basque Country (2005)

Bachelor's Degree in Industrial Engineering, Technical University of Valencia (2001)