SOAS University of London

Centre of African Studies

Centre of African Studies Events

The Centre's activities are diverse and many. The majority of its members are lecturers of the University of London, contributing to the teaching of undergraduate and Masters degrees and the supervision of Doctoral research within the humanities, social sciences and sciences. One of the most important functions of the Centre is to act as a forum for regional and interdisciplinary co-operation within the University of London which is predominantly organised through membership of disciplinary departments. Other activities of the Centre include representation on international and national committees for African scholarship, research and understanding; establishing and supporting funded schemes for Visiting Scholars from Africa; linking academe, government, and business through meetings, workshops and conferences promoting Africanist research and understanding, and through meetings of the Africa Business Group; raising the profile of its members for interdisciplinary research and consultancy, and much more.

In pursuit of its aims, the Centre maintains a broad range of institutional liaisons with other Africanist centres in Africa, the United Kingdom, Europe, the Commonwealth and the United States. It publishes its own briefing newsletter, African News, with a distribution of over 800 copies, three times a year. The Centre also keeps members informed of news, events and meetings on Africa throughout the year through the e-mail group mailing system run from the Centre office.

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  • Hassan Musa: the artist's stamp
  • Mail Art from the SOAS Archives & Special Collections and a sampler of his paintings and illustrated books
  • Mail Art from the SOAS Archives & Special Collections and a sampler of his paintings and illustrated books. An exhibition at the Brunei Galley SOAS until 23 March 2019.

  • Africa in 2019: Prospects and Forecasts
  • Kumi Naidoo (Amnesty International), Razia Khan (Standard Chartered), Nanjala Nyabola (Writer and independent political analyst), Patrick Sam (National Art Council of Namibia),
  • The Royal African Society’s flagship events in London and Edinburgh, delivered in partnership with the British Council, to discuss and debate what 2019 holds in store for the continent.   




  • The Oxford Handbook of the Ethiopian Economy
  • Professor Christopher Cramer (SOAS), Dr Tesfachew Taferre (UNCTAD), Dr Carlos Oya (SOAS), Dr Florian Schäfer (LSE)
  • The Oxford Handbook focuses on structural transformation to understand Ethiopia's unique model of development. From both academic and professional standpoints, this volume is a key reference work on the economy of Ethiopia and how the lessons learned can be applied to Africa more broadly.

    Join us for the book launch and discussion with some of the key authors.

  • SOAS African Development Forum 2019: ""
  • Dr. Ibrahim Mayaki (NEPAD), Olutimehin Adegbeye, Siyanda Mohutsiwa, Wale Lawal(The Republic), Yinka Adegoke(Quartz Africa), Said El Hachimi (WTO counsellor) and many others
  • In March, the SOAS African Development Forum will present a conference on the current state of insecurity in Africa, and its prospects for development.

  • #BringBack OurGirls - The Kidnapping of the Chibok Girls: Five Years On
  • Bulama Bukarti, Dr Elizabeth Pearson, Prof Fareda Banda, Aisha Muhammed-Oyebode
  • A panel discussion at SOAS University of London with leading academics and experts in the field of gender, conflict and international law will examine the gendered nature of the Boko Haram conflict to explore how and why they are using these tactics and how we can tackle them going forward.

  • Disarmament in Africa
  • Dr Eka Ikpe (Kings College London), Elli Kytomaki (Chatham House / EK Consulting) & Olamide Samuel (SOAS)


  • GDAI Webinar Series #2 - 'Twists and Turns: the unpredictable trajectory of decentralization in Sierra Leone'
  • Dr Felix Marco Conteh
  • The Mo Ibrahim Foundation, the Centre of African Studies at SOAS and SOAS Radio are delighted to announce that the speaker for our second webinar will be Dr Felix Marco Conteh, who completed his PhD at SOAS Univeristy of London in 2014 under the Mo Ibrahim Foundation PhD Scholarship programme.

    Dr Conteh will deliver a webinar entitled 'Twists and Turns: the unpredictable trajectory of decentralization in Sierra Leone'


  • The Belt & Road Initiative: International Responses
  • This conference is designed to examine how this flagship foreign policy initiative of President Xi Jinping is affecting the key regions in the world along both the Silk Road Economic Belt and the Maritime Silk Road, and how countries thus affected are responding.


  • SOAS-ALU Summer School
  • Sindi Gordon and others TBC
  • The first initiative is the SOAS-ALU Summer school on the theme of 'Leadership in Africa and in the African-Caribbean Diaspora' to take place at SOAS on 15-26 July 2019 by SOAS mentees from the Breaking Barriers mentoring scheme  and ALU students.



  • Translating Possibilities
  • A public night of readings, performances, films and dance celebrating translated poetry moving beyond the page.



  • Abina and the Important Men (2017)
  • Director: Soumyaa Kapil
  • Abina and the Important Men is a lightly animated film adaptation of the award-winning graphic history by Trevor R. Getz and Liz Clarke.



  • China-Africa and an Economic Transformation - Book discussion
  • Dr Arkebe Oqubay (Editor of the book/SOAS Alum), Prof Carlos Oya (SOAS) and Prof Stephen Chan (SOAS)
  • Authored by leading scholars on Africa, China and China-Africa relations, the book brings together stimulating and thought-provoking perspectives and deeper analysis.

  • Women Go Green for Peace
  • The UK section of the Women’s International League for Peace & Freedom (WILPF) will be hosting its annual Autumn Seminar on Saturday, 23 November, at SOAS, University of London in the Brunei Gallery Lecture Theatre from 10AM - 6PM



  • Area Studies and the Urgent Need for Global Intercultural Dialogue
  • Geir Helgesen (SOAS Centre of Korean Studies/Fudan Development Institute, Shanghai), Chunrong Liu (Fudan Development Institute, Shanghai and NIAS, Copenhagen University), Rachel Harrison (SOAS)
  • In this roundtable discussion we propose that, given the precarious and fragile state of the world, it is essential for Area Studies to play a more important role.