Dr Joanne Tomkinson
Joanne completed her PhD in the Department of Development Studies at SOAS in 2019. Her thesis examined prospects for late development in the age of neoliberalism through a comparative political economy analysis of state-led development in Ethiopia and Vietnam. The research was funded by the ESRC.
Her research interests lie at the intersection of the political economy of development, the role of the state in development, and the international political economy. She holds an MSc in Development Studies from SOAS and a BA in English Literature and Philosophy from the University of York. Prior to the PhD she worked in the international development and media fields for six years, including for Oxfam, Reuters and at the University of Oxford. She has also taught international political economy in the Department of Politics and International Studies at SOAS. She now holds a post-doctoral research position in the Department, and works on the ERC-funded African State Architecture project. Her current research is focused on the role of airport buildings and infrastructure in national development strategies in Africa.
Research interests include the political economy of development, the role of the state in development, state-building, infrastructure, architecture and capitalism, the international political economy, and comparative analysis. Current research is focused on the role of airport buildings and infrastructure in national development strategies in contemporary Africa. It uses the airport as a symbol of a country’s ambitions regarding its place in the world, and explores what the form and function of these gateway structures can tell us about African state-building efforts.