West Africa

Interested Scholars

The following scholars are interested in this topic:

Chiletso Kumadzi Msang’azi, UN-World Food Programme-Ethiopia. Experienced program professional with a demonstrated history of working in Education and Humanitarian sectors. Skilled in School Feeding Programme, Supplementary Feeding Programmes, General Food Distribution, Early Childhood Development, Livelihood and Resilience, Community Engagement, Children’s Rights, Teaching and Monitoring and Evaluation in the context of Humanitarian Crisis.

I am a research assistant at Institue for Empirical Research in Political Economy (IERPE) . I use quantitative methods to evaluate the impact of social reforms in Sub-Saharan Africa with a focus on Benin. I am interested in development economics especially on issues related to agriculture, education and infrastructure.

My main scientific interest revolves around questions that integrate behavioral science insights for the prevention and reduction of risks, and the achievement of sustainable adaptive behaviors.

My main research interests are political economy, comparative politics, and methodology with specialized concentrations in game theory, formal modeling and econometrics. More specifically, I study revolutions, economic development and state repression within countries of the Global South.

Djamiou Ohounko has nine years of experience enjoying market research and management.
Particularly, he creates, evaluates and executes projects within organizations and also as an external
partner in West Africa. He constructed frameworks for 5+ surveys across key sectors, then trained 200+
surveyors and supervised fieldworks with a cumulative sample of 5,000+ respondents. In addition, he
analyzed data and written many reports for polls as well as managed disseminations.

Besides, serving
his community and promoting sustainable development goals, led him to co-found an environmental and
community based association “La Brigade Verte” (Benin) in 2017. He is in charge of communications
and created awareness for 1,000+ people, managed 3 projects as well as trained 350+ pupils on
environmental issues including climate change. Furthermore, he was part of the team that identified
solutions to improve resilience.

Djamiou holds a Bachelor’s degree in management of organizations and
he is an MBA candidate of African School of Economics. His goal is to pursue a PhD in finance to go in-depth on how financial inclusion foster climate resilience in Africa.

When Mathematics, Economics and Data Science meet together, there’s no business, R&D or ML problem that can’t be solved.

Educator, Scholar, Advocate. A certified teacher passionate about furthering students’ access to education, Bertrand combines strong academics with extensive intercultural experience. In 2013 he graduated from the Higher Teachers Training College of Yaounde in Cameroon and earned a Secondary and High School Teacher’s Certificate. He has served as Mathematics’ teacher in Cameroon in different regions and noticed the disparities in education attainment level and their impact on regional growth. He took the opportunity to hone his skills in Impact Evaluation methods and Statistics at the African School of Economics through a master’s program while serving as a research assistant in Benin. He, therefore, gained valuable skills in addressing issues in education and in Social Science at large. His ability to combine tools from Data Science and Economics to make data-driven decisions gives him the opportunity to participate to addressing some of the most pressing problems face by the world poor.

I am a political communication scholar with a particular focus on gender. My research interests include gendered mediation, political communication, online campaigning, political marketing, political journalism, African media and journalism and visual communication. Methodically, my expertise is in qualitative research including (multimodal) critical discourse analysis, (elite) interviewing, textual analysis and focus groups. My recent research examined representations of Ghanaian and Nigerian women politicians in print and radio news, as well as their self-representation on social media.

Cinema audiences and reception

This project seeks to develop literature on the voices of cinema-going audiences in Nigeria, Ghana (two vibrant Anglophone filmmaking countries on the continent) and other African countries. Very little information exists on the history of spectatorship, audiences’ socio-economic status, viewing preferences and interpretive strategies of African film audiences. Through ethnographic and survey approaches, existing knowledge gaps will be closed with rich and layered descriptions of film spectatorship and audiences. The publications produced from the research will be useful to scholars, filmmakers, cinema operators and investors, who require more than market research surveys for creative intervention. The objectives of the study are to produce an updated history of spectatorship in Nigeria and Ghana, with an overview of contemporary spaces and media of African cinema audiences (including Internet, cinemas, Africa Magic channels etc); to examine and document the socio-economic status, audience preferences and interpretive strategies of African cinema-going audiences in an attempt to close existing knowledge gaps in film scholarship; to complement the audience work which I began in Lagos in July 2016, given that the Nigerian and Ghanaian film industries arguably share commonalities in terms of their postcolonial status, cultural production models and values. The reception of particular filmmakers is welcome.

African film and social change

The impact of films, particularly documentary films, is already being tracked and documented in South Africa. Arguably, the same can hardly be said of scholars working in the eastern and western parts of the continent. In India – where a thriving film industry also exists – social change is attributed to Partition films, for example. And in the United States, the plethora of films that depict politics and history generate huge debates on representational strategies and social change. Several of such films are used as instructional aids in formal learning environments; and the way they shape our knowledge of the world is well-documented. This project examines the social function of films – documentaries and feature-length productions. Where films are used to promote development, peace, reconciliation or conflict resolution, it is of interest to examine how that was achieved. To deal with the objective of measuring the impact of socio-political films, such films have to be strategically exposed to key stakeholders. These include those who are able to effect the desired change i.e. policy makers and researchers, relevant government agencies, social and political activists and non-governmental organisations to mention a few. Therefore, the methods of this project will include historical and contemporary perspectives of film screenings and their effects, focus group discussions and semi-structured interviews of key individuals. This will also broaden the scope of study thus yielding richer analyses of film and social change.

Celebrity studies

This study seeks to examine the motivations of celebrity crossover from entertainment to political office. It is quite common to listen to media celebrities discussing their intentions to create social impact by giving back to the society that contributed to their rise to stardom. Some celebrities believe that this contribution can be achieved by occupying a political office. However, scholars and celebrity fans have expressed reservations about celebrities’ crossover into politics because of a presumed lack of expertise in political affairs. With the huge fan base that some Nigerian celebrities have within and outside the African continent, it is quite easy to promote social causes and create impact through their social media pages without necessarily venturing into politics. And so, being conscious of their positions yet seeking political offices implies that some motivations are unclear to the public. It is therefore necessary to probe the motivations of these celebrities crossing over to hold political offices. Also worthy of scholarly attention are the pains and gains of the crossover as well as the decisions to remain politicians after a term has been served, to return to their previous art or to straddle both worlds. This project will benefit from all the methods applicable to case studies.

I am a Lecturer in International Development and Economics at the University of Westminster. Before this, I held a post-doctoral research position at the University of Oxford’s Department for International Development, where I was involved in a EU FP7-funded project seeking to investigate the impact of Foreign Direct Investment on local development in Ghana. I have also worked as a research consultant for a number of organisations, including Oxford Policy Management, UNU-WIDER, the World Food Programme, and UNDP.

My research is divided into three strands: one examines the impact of FDI in low-income countries, with a specific field focus on Ghana; another one is broadly concerned with social policy in low-income countries; with a more recent focus on health policy and health systems reform in Sub-Saharan Africa; finally, the last strand develops the work on instability and development, which Istarted as part of my doctoral research a few years ago.

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