The brutal conflict in the Tigray region is another violent manifestation of the geo-political evolution of Ethiopia and region. Dr Erk will lay out the political history of Ethiopia, the implications for politics in the Horn of Africa and on countries downstream of Ethiopia’s new dam on the Blue Nile. He will reflect on the lessons and insights for democracy and stability in diverse societies.
Dr Jan Erk is currently Visiting Professor at the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology in Kumasi, Ghana.
In 2017 he was the SAIIA Bradlow Fellow at Witwatersrand University. This is Jan’s third talk to SAIIA’s Western Cape Branch. In 2018, Jan spoke on the resurgence of traditional authorities across sub-Saharan Africa. In 2019 he spoke on secessionist and separatist movements in the West and reflected on whether similar demands for self-determination and border change existed across Sub-Saharan Africa. For the 2021 lecture, he looks at the complex case of multi-ethnic, federal Ethiopia and the current national crisis sparked by the separatism of one of the regional states of the federation.
Jan holds a PhD in Political Science from McGill University in Canada. He has held teaching positions at the University of Toronto, Central European University, and the University of Leiden. He is recurring Visiting Professor at the School of Law and Governance of Addis Ababa University since 2012. Jan is the author of numerous scholarly articles, chapters, and books. His most recent books are The Ethnopolitics of Ethnofederalism in Ethiopia (London: Routledge 2018), Decentralization, Democracy, and Development in Africa (London: Routledge 2018), and Federalism and Decentralization in Sub-Saharan Africa (London: Routledge 2018).
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