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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 of infrastructure, Regional Geography, Comparative Politics

Research Project

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

In this project I seek to understand how African states govern long-neglected peripheries. To do so, I seek inspiration in works in Political Geography that posit strategic bargains as an explanation to the strategies toward peripheries of central state bureaucracies. I start by asking who got grid electricity, when and how in two schemes of grid electrification in northern Ghana (1989-2012) and southeastern Tanzania (2004-15). The contrast between both sequences highlights the politico-territorial linkages that shaped the trajectories of access and provision, as well as the alignments and disalignments between those trajectories and the prevailing national settlements in the electricity sector.

My research kicked off in September 2012. Fieldwork in Ghana was carried out in 2013, and in Tanzania in 2014 and 2015.

The dissertation was successfully defended on April 2018.


Prof. Dr. Paul Nugent

Dr. Thomas Molony

Latest publications

(full academic CV, ORCID)

Less regularly than I would like, I also publish research-based briefs on my blog: Electric Territorialities

Academic Qualifications

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

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

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

BEng Industrial Engineering, Technical University of Valencia (2001)