The Anglo-Ethiopian Society

Panel discussion - Nomadic Education in the Horn of Africa: Challenges and Opportunities

PENHA: Pastoral and Environmental Network in the Horn of Africa

Thursday 8th June 2017

2:00pm - 6:30pm, Room B104, Brunei Building, SOAS, Russell Square, London WC1H 0XG - Free Public event (all welcome)

There have been a number of initiatives to provide education to nomadic pastoralist children in the Greater Horn of Africa. The various outcomes depend on the national state policies on education. Many of such well-intended state led interventions have been small scale, ineffective and unsustainable. Moreover, there is evidence that some interventions have been successful at least in the pilot phases but deemed to fail once the piloting ended. Such projects include mobile schooling, distance education including radio broadcasting, residential/boarding schools, feeding schools. Mobile-learning (m-learning) - which is the delivery of education using mobile technology - has been developed in some parts of the Horn, especially in Kenya. Therefore, the question is how we can provide an educational system that fits the needs and aspirations of pastoralist communities and their children’s right-to-education as citizens of the various countries in the Greater Horn.

The The Pastoral and Environmental Network in the Horn of Africa (PENHA) have organised a consultative workshop on Nomadic Education in the Horn of Africa. This event will highlight first hand experiences from experts in the field.


Mesghina Abraha & Abdurazak Sherif Mohammed: will present the finding from their current research on Nomadic education in the Horn. "Rethinking Education for Nomadic education in the Horn of Africa". Mesghina is a research associate at PENHA and a 3rd year PhD student at SOAS. His thesis is on "The role of social media on migration-decision: the case of irregular migration". He was an education specialist at the Ministry of Education of the State of Eritrea. His contributions include introduction of learning-technologies in the Eritrean education system and ICT curriculum development. Abdurazak (project-manager by vocation) is a research associate at PENHA and managing director of African Development Trust (ADT). His previous appointments include Head of Programs of Mercy Universal, Program Manager of ADT, Operational Manager and Area Project Manager of Pastoralist Concern Ethiopia. Abdurazak completed his first degree in Islamic Economics in Sudan in 1998. In 2011 he joined master course at Middlesex University and graduated with MSc Project Management Practice in 2013. Abdurazak has first-hand experience in pastoralist education as he implemented PCAE’s Pastoralist Education Projects in Somali region of Ethiopia which was funded by USAID from 2003 – 2010.

Prof. Jeremy Swift: will give a talk on “What education do pastoralists need, and how is it to be delivered?”. Jeremy is an economist, works on pastoral research and development. He is Fellow Emeritus at the Institute of Development Studies at the University of Sussex. He wrote his doctoral dissertation on the Tuareg of the Sahara in Mali, and has worked since with pastoralists in Sahelian West Africa, the Horn, East Africa, Iran, China and Mongolia. He has focussed on land tenure and natural resource management, food security and famine, conflict and education.

Dr. Angela Raven-Roberts: will discuss the "History of Pastoralist Education and the Evolution of the Pastoralist Field School Approach". Angela is an independent consultant and researcher at the International Gender Studies Centre in Oxford, UK. She works on capacity development, specializing in gender, youth, and livelihoods in emergencies, post crisis recovery, pastoral livelihoods in change, and the role of national civil services in disaster preparedness, and is reviewing current educational policies for pastoral communities in the Horn of Africa. Angela was formerly the regional chief of emergencies at UNICEF Geneva and has over 30 years’ experience in humanitarian and development work at the UN, with NGOs and in academia.”

Dr Diana Bosch: presentation to be confirmed

Dr. Zeremariam Fre: will present “Voluntary sedentarisation and implication to Nomadic Education in the Sudan”. Zere has over 25 years of development work experience in Sub-Saharan Africa and has worked as a consultant and advisor for a number of international organizations including the EU,NORAD, NOVIB, IIED, Oxfam-GB, CAFOD, ITDG, FAO, IFAD, UNCCD-IGAD, UNICEF, ACORD, SOS-Sahel, Norwegian People’s Aid (NPA), national governments ministries and NGOs in the Greater Horn of Africa and Europe. His research interests include evolving livelihoods, urban-rural/rural-urban interactions, indigenous knowledge systems, resource based conflicts, sustainability of urban and peri-urban agriculture, destitution and urbanization among African rural communities. Zeremariam is currently a Teaching Fellow at the Development Planning Unit (DPU) at University College London (UCL) on the MSc Development Administration and Planning course and is the director and founder of PENHA.

Dr. Laura Hammond (Moderator): is a reader and former head of the Development Studies at SOAS. Laura has degrees in Anthropology from the University Wisconsin-Madison and did her undergraduate degree at Sarah Lawrence College. She has taught at Clark University, the University of Reading, and was a Visiting Fellow at the University of Sussex. She has specialist Knowledge of the Horn of Africa in general, and Ethiopia and Somalia in particular.

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