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Centre of African Studies: Research


Current Grants

African Borderlands Research Network (ABORNE)

ABORNE is an interdisciplinary network of researchers interested in all aspects of borders and trans-boundary phenomena in Africa. Its inaugural meeting was held in Edinburgh in 2007, initiated by Professor Paul Nugent and has since grown to over 200 members.

African Governance and Space (AFRIGOS)

AFRIGOS is a five-year project examining transport corridors, border towns and port cities in four regions of Africa. It is led by Professor Paul Nugent, with Drs Wolfgang Zeller and Jose-Maria Munoz, comparing the busiest transport corridors in east, central, west and southern Africa.

Boundaries and state-making in the Trans-Volta and Senegambia

Professor Paul Nugent is working on his next monograph, which examines boundaries and state-making in West Africa from the mid-18th century to the present. The book deals with colonial state creation and ideas of community, comparing the Trans-Volta and Senegambia regions.

Edinburgh Catalyst Fellows

The Catalyst Fellowship initiative is organized by the Centre of African Studies at the University of Edinburgh. With the support of the Scottish Funding Council and the Global Challenges Research Fund, we aim to support the research and scholarship of more than 100 fellows. Inaugurated at the 2019 European Conference on African Studies, the Catalyst Fellowships supported the attendance of scholars based at African institutions.

Fighting high-level corruption in Africa: Learning from effective law enforcement

The project 'Fighting high-level corruption in Africa: Learning from effective law enforcement’ is part of the Anti-Corruption Evidence Programme funded by DfID (insert link It is a two-year project (2019-20) led by Gerhard Anders, University of Edinburgh (Principal Investigator) and Fortunata Makene, Economic and Social Research Foundation in Dar es Salaam (Co-Investigator).

Future Pasts

Dr Rick Rohde is collaborating on 'Future Pasts', which seeks to understand how people in western Namibia draw on a range of resources in preparation for their futures. It examines the built environment, local uranium mining, tourism and ecology. Dr Rohde's focus is on documenting ecological change over the last century.

Humanitarian Journalism Project

This AHRC project is an interdisciplinary, multi-institutional collaboration that aims to map the global field of humanitarian journalism. Together with Mel Bunce at City University and Martin Scott at UEA, Kate Wright draws on newsroom ethnography, semi-structured interviews and content analysis in order to examine some of the world's biggest news organizations.

Innovation & Inclusive Industrialisation in Agro-Processing

Innovation and Inclusion Industrialisation in Agro-Processing is a two-year collaboration between researchers from the University of Edinburgh, the University of Johannesburg, and the Economic and Social Research Foundation, Tanzania.

Investigating Networks of Zoonosis Innovation (INZI)

INZI is a five-year project, which explores how African trypanosomiasis (known as sleeping sickness) has been researched, controlled and treated. The team is led by Professor James Smith, and focuses on trypanosomiasis as a neglected tropical disease, despite its significant impact on human and animal health across Africa.

Security at the Margins (SeaM)

SeaM is a three-year collaboration between CAS and the University of the Witwatersand, which explores the strategies individuals use to negotiate marginality in urban South Africa. At a time of increased homophobic and xenophobic attacks, the project aims to identify various forms of marginality and their counteraction, further understanding of the drivers of security.

Sexuality, Politics And Religion In Africa

The SPRA project examines how public discourses around sexuality and homosexuality are shaped in Uganda. It analyses the influence of religious leaders and ideas in framing national policy and political elite action.

Social Media and Security in Africa

'SMS Africa' is a three-year project, providing a timely understanding of the role social media in driving (in)security in Africa. It is led by Drs Thomas Molony and Maggie Dwyer, with partners in Kenya, Tanzania and Sierra Leone. Social media present new challenges and opportunities for those charged with community safety, as well as risks of violence and instability for the poor.

The South African Wine Industry

Professor Paul Nugent is writing a history of the South African wine industry in the twentieth century, focusing on the ways in which consumption patterns and innovation were inflected by the politics of race and temperance. It draws on archival research to examine the role of racialised discourses and practices in shaping consumption.

Transboundary resource management

This project contributes to understandings of socio-economic, environmental and political spaces of borderland livelihoods among communities that depend on resource extraction along the Zimbabwe-Mozambique border.