Belonging in a Cosmopolitan Society: Perspectives from African Migrants in the Diaspora

University of Melbourne, 12-14 March, 2020

‘Borders, Identities and Belonging have been at the centre of debates on the profound transformations wrought by globalisation. But perhaps the movement of people across geographical borders, and the transformative impact of the digital revolution that has ushered in the information age, are the most illustrative examples.’

African Studies Group( ASG) invites submissions for a paper
proposal to their inaugural conference titled Borders, Identities and Belonging in a Cosmopolitan Society: Perspectives from African Migrants in the Diaspora to be held on 12-14 March .

The ASG is an association of researchers with interests in African studies, which is hosted by the University of Melbourne .

Conference Themes
The Borders, Identities and Belonging conference will be organised around the following thematic questions:
1. The Concept of Home : What and where is home? Where, when and how do we feel a sense of ‘belonging’?
2. Relevance of Borders : How do borders permeate our social lives?
3. Digital Transformation : How have digital communication platforms transformed the concepts and experiences of borders, identity and belonging?
4. Multiculturalism and Integration : What are the experiences and prospects of multiculturalism in increasing our sense of belonging and social integration?

 Paper proposals related to the main themes of the conference are welcome with a deadline of 20 January, 2020, at 11:59 AEST .

They can be submitted on the online form or copy/paste the following link to your

A few travel bursaries are available for student applicants from within Australia.

More Information on the Conference is at

For inquiries please contact

Africa Studies coursework resumes at ANU after several decades

When the Development Studies major at was set up at ANU around 1981, regional specialisations included Africa, East Asia and SE Asia. John Ballard taught a course in Post-Colonial Politics in Africa and the Pacific and Ian Hancock taught one in African History. Also Geography and Anthropology courses had substantial African material although Geography later dropped its regional courses. Africa became unviable by the end of the 1980’s, when Ian and John moved to other courses.

POLS3030,  an undergraduate course offered in Second Semester, 2020 by the School of Politics and International Relations, seems to have started quite recently. The Course Convener is Dr Richard Frank.

Conflict and change in sub-Saharan Africa

 ‘This class explores the issues, ideas, and trends that shape the politics of sub-Saharan Africa, across almost 50 countries and a billion people. Unlike what often appears in the press, Africa is not all conflict, famine, and state collapse. This class offers an overview of both successful and unsuccessful cases of political and economic development in this region and seeks to answer a number of questions including: What are the legacies of colonial rule? Why do some African countries suffer political violence more frequently than other countries within Africa or without? Why has democracy been consolidated in certain African countries but regressed or collapsed in others? What accounts for the failures and successes of African countries’ economic development? How have international actors and events affected African politics and society?’


Research on Africa at the Crawford School, aNU


The Individual Deprivation Measure (IDM)
Helen Suich of the Crawford School leads the IDM country study in South Africa. Her research focuses on issues of poverty alleviation, examining the impacts of rural development interventions on multidimensional poverty and vulnerability. See
An international conference will be held in 2020.

State Fragility
By building on seven in-depth country case studies, three of which are in Africa (Burundi, Rwanda, Sierra Leone ) the other four being Afghanistan, Lebanon, Pakistan, and Papua New Guinea) and recent developments in the field, a 2019 panel discussed dimensions of state fragility and pathways that can help to escape fragility. This event is part of an ongoing research project on state fragility at the Development Policy Centre, Crawford School, ANU.

Livestock, aquaculture and sustainable food security policy
Robyn Alders is a senior consulting fellow with the Chatham House Centre on Global Health Security focusing on policy opportunities to support sustainable livestock and aquaculture strategy implementation and sustainable food and nutrition security. Robyn is also an honorary professor with the Development Policy Centre within the Australian National University. She is currently involved with a Chatham House research project in Nigeria. Also with Chatham House she’s involved with One Health Food Security Policy research. She is also the Chair of the Kyeema Foundation which has a regional office in Mozambique and development projects being implemented in Mozambique and Uganda.

Robyn has recently co-authored ‘The global institutional
landscape of food and agriculture’. Chatham House Discussion Paper 265,


Poetry by Ian Iqbal Rashid and Omar Sakr

Date & time

Mon 09 Dec 2019, 5.30pm


SRWB Theatrette, Sir Roland Wilson Building, ANU


The Humanities Research Centre and the Freilich Project are honoured to host an evening of poetry and short films exploring the complexities of sexuality, culture, faith and identity. Ian Iqbal Rashid,  born in Tanzania of Indian Muslim background, will be reading selections from his poetry collections as well as new writing, and screening two early short films, Surviving Sabu and Stag, with a response from Omar Sakr, one of Australia’s most prominent young poets, who will also share his poetry.

For more information and see



Clive Williams on ‘Poaching and wildlife crime in southern Africa’

Date & time
6–7pm Wednesday 4 December 2019

Fellows Road Lecture Theatre 2, Building 6, ANU College of Law, 6 Fellows Road, Acton

‘This presentation looks at wildlife crime in southern Africa, with particular focus on South Africa, Namibia, Botswana and Zimbabwe – drawing from Professor Williams’ recent research visit to the area. The presentation also looks at why the international illegal trade in wildlife is estimated to be worth US$23 billion a year, who facilitates it, and who benefits.’

For more information see

Beyongo Dynamic’s thesis on Chinese investments in Zambian copper mining

Beyongo Dynamic’s 2018 thesis
‘Regulating foreign direct investments in resource-dependent African countries : the case of chinese investments in Zambia’s copper mining sector’ is available digitally at:

Several studies have examined the diverse social, economic and political impacts of Chinese investments on African countries. While some studies argue that Chinese investments has positively impacted on these countries, others claim that it has led to the weakening of local regulations and local industries. Throughout many aspects of this debate, scholars and commentators tend to consider African actors and agents as passive objects shaped by Chinese investments, often neglecting the subtle ways in which local actors and institutions interact with Chinese investments to both resist and shape various outcomes. This thesis addresses this oversight in the specific context of safety and environmental regulations of Chinese investments in Zambia’s copper mining sector. The thesis adopts a political economy approach, which contends that host country actors and institutions both resist and cooperate with foreign companies to shape investments practices. In particular, some local actors have responded to Foreign Direct investments (FDI) by re-vamping domestic institutions to counter more effectively the negative impact of FDI. I use this approach to examine how local actors have responded to events and practices involving two Chinese mining companies operating in Zambia……..’

Zambian PhD scholar: Audrey Kalindi

ANU scholarship holder Ms Audrey Kalindi has arrived in Canberra. She is currently a lecturer in the Department of Population Studies at the University of
Zambia, where she is involved in teaching and research, and is the course
convener of a new postgraduate diploma in programme monitoring and evaluation offered by the University.
Audrey’s research topic on understanding the institutional and community factors associated with maternal mortality in Zambia is important in contributing to the scarce knowledge base about maternal and childbirth outcomes in poor and developing countries.

A public panel discussion, ‘State fragility and how to escape it’,

A public panel discussion, ‘State fragility and how to escape it’, will be held on Friday 29 November 4:30-6pm, at Molonglo Theatre, Crawford School of Public Policy, ANU

For more details including registration see

‘About half of the world’s poor live in fragile and conflict-affected states. The governments in these countries lack the legitimacy and capacity to provide protection and deliver the jobs, public services, and opportunities their people need. The perils of state fragility are not constrained to national boundaries. It also drives mass migration, trafficking and terrorism. However, despite increasing attention by domestic and international actors, the outcomes of interventions in addressing fragility have been mixed and often counterproductive.’

By building on seven in-depth country case studies, three of which are in Africa  (Burundi, Rwanda, Sierra Leone ) the other four being Afghanistan, Lebanon, Pakistan, and Papua New Guinea) and recent developments in the field, this panel discusses dimensions of state fragility and pathways that can help to escape fragility. This event is part of an ongoing research project on state fragility at the Development Policy Centre, Crawford School of Public Policy, ANU.

Panellists are:

Dr Nematullah Bizhan, Lecturer at the Development Policy Centre, ANU.

Saku Akmeemana,  Principal Specialist for Governance,  Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade

Dr Bilal Malaeb,  postdoctoral researcher at the Institute of Global Affairs at the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE).

The panel will be chaired by Professor Stephen Howes, Professor of Economics and Director of the Development Policy Centre, ANU

Robyn Alders renews link with ANU

Robyn Alders renewed her link with the ANU in April, 2019

‘Robyn Alders currently works as a Senior Scientific Advisor at the Centre on Global Health Security at Chatham House, is an Honorary Professor with the Development Policy Centre at the Australian National University and Chair of the Kyeema Foundation. Her current research and development interests include: linkages between food and nutrition security and health security, gender equity, planetary health and science communication.’

Robyn obtained her PhD in Veterinary Immunology at ANU in 1989 before working at the University of Zambia. Her later African experience includes Mozambique and Angola.

Augustus Panton receives VC’s Award for Excellence in Tutoring


Mr Augustus Panton, PhD Candidate in Economics, Crawford School of Public Policy, and Teaching Assistant, Research School of Economics, ANU College of Business and Economics, has received the Vice-Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Education (Tutoring/Demonstrating). Before joining the ANU he worked as an Economist at the Central Bank of Liberia.

‘Augustus tutors undergraduate and postgraduate economics courses. Utilising his diverse expertise from his professional experience and ongoing PhD research, Augustus applies research-led teaching and the case-based learning method, with a focus on student engagement and intellectual stimulation and creativity at the heart of the teaching process.’

For more information and an excellent photo please see

See also: