SOAS University of London

Centre of African Studies

SOAS Africa Conference - Imagining Africa’s Future: Language, Culture, Governance, Development


Date: 20 July 2017Time: 9:00 AM

Finishes: 21 July 2017Time: 6:00 PM

Venue: Russell Square: College Buildings Room: Brunei Gallery Lecture Theatre

Type of Event: Conference

The SOAS Centre of African studies (CAS) is hosting the first SOAS Africa Conference, which will be held on the 20th and 21st of July 2017. Imagining Africa’s Future marks SOAS’ centenary, and in order to celebrate a century of African studies we look forward to examine future key trends, changes and debates that are likely to shape the African continent over the coming century, drawing from a broad range of disciplines and perspectives in a truly inter-disciplinary conference.


Africa has changed rapidly over the last century, and the pace of change in the 21st century already promises huge transformations to African societies, economies and cultures. We want to seize the occasion of our centenary to explore and imagine not only what the impact of these transformations could be, but also how our research, policies, political action and visionary thought can shape Africa’s future.

The conference will bring together academics and practitioners from different disciplines to discuss and analyse contemporary issues affecting the continent and its diaspora through groundbreaking contributions. The format will be interactive and diverse, with interdisciplinary panel discussions, screenings, performances and small discussion groups mixing not only different media but also different perspectives.

Panels: Creating and Claiming Identities; Actors and Perspectives in the future of African development; New visions, new images, new stories; How Can Africa Claim the 21st Century?

Group discussions: Knowledge production, media and access in African studies; Alternative forms of Protest in Africa.

Keynote Lecture: 'Africa between the Past and the Future: Culture, Governance and Development' by HRH Muhammad Sanusi II, CON, The Emir of Kano, Former Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria

Film Screening 'Something Necessary' with Film director Judy Kibinge, chaired by Lindiwe Dovey(SOAS).

Art Exhibition by South African artist Mohau Modisakeng (currently exhibiting at the 57th Venice Biennale)

Other confirmed speakers: Nanjala Nyabola(Independent researcher), Jean Bryce (University of the West Indies), Jan Goossens (Festival de Marseille/Dream City, Tunis/Fondation Passerelle, Bamako), Amidu Sunni (Lagos State University), Onyekachi Wambu (AFFORD) among others.

Please download the provisional programme on the right hand side of this page or by clicking HERE.

Registration fees (includes light meals and attendance to evening performance at the end of the second day):

£25 Standard per day/£40 for 2 days
£5 SOAS students* per day
£10 SOAS Alumni** per day

*Student will need to show valid ID on the day.
**Alumni to show alumni card

Please register and book your ticket here:

The conference convenors are SOAS/CAS members:
Prof Mashood Baderin, Prof Friederike Lupke, Mr Paul Asquith, Ms Angelica Baschiera

Organiser: Centre of African Studies

Contact email: