Tous les articles par cedejsudan

Publication – The 2015 Sudanese General Elections: Political readjustment and authoritarian reinforcement, By Soliman Chaouche (Paris 1 Pantheon-Sorbonne University)

Last April, Sudanese people have been called to the polls for the 2015 general elections. It represented a significant challenge, given the fact that this ballot was the first in Sudan since the secession of South Sudan in 2011.

Despite a call for boycott by the main opposition parties, Omar El Bechir, in power since 1989, has decided to maintain the vote. This choice was all the more surprising at a moment where the government was facing many issues: a major economic crisis, more violent opposition movements in peripheral regions, infightings within the ruling party…

Soliman Chaouche’s fieldwork was carried out during the two-month campaign before the elections. His paper is based on the final electoral results and on the analysis of the Sudanese political system. It argues that these elections have led to the weakening of the main opposition parties and to the consolidation of the current regime. Indeed, far from the path to democracy, this ballot has been, paradoxically a strengthening tool for El Bechir.

Soliman Chaouche’s paper in French:

This paper is the result of a collaboration between the CEDEJ Khartoum, the CFEE, the Multiannual Observatory of Political and Security issues and the Regional Council of Aquitaine.

The Multiannual Observatory of Political and Security Issues is a research program dedicated to the historical perspective of political developments. It is co-financed by the Directorate General for International Relations and Strategy (DGRIS, http : // ) and by Africas in the World (LAM, UMR-CNRS 5115) at Sciences Po Bordeaux ( .html).

Les soudanais se sont récemment rendus aux urnes à l’occasion des élections générales de 2015, conformément au calendrier électoral mais dans un contexte inédit puisqu’il s’agissait des premières élections depuis l’indépendance du Soudan du Sud en 2011. Malgré l’appel de la grande majorité des parts d’opposition à repousser le scrutin, le régime d’Omar El Béchir au pouvoir depuis 1989 a décidé de maintenir le vote. Une décision d’autant plus surprenante qu’elle s’inscrit dans un contexte particulièrement difficile pour le régime en place (crise économique majeure, opposition armée dans les régions périphériques et luttes internes au sein du parti au pouvoir).

Revenant sur les deux mois de campagne ayant précédé le scrutin, les résultats électoraux, mais aussi le fonctionnement du régime politique soudanais, cette Note revient sur les mécanismes par lesquels ces élections ont conduit à l’affaiblissement des principaux partis d’opposition et au renforcement du pouvoir en place. En effet, bien loin d’avoir mis le Soudan sur la voie de la « démocratisation », ce scrutin s’est davantage révélé un formidable outil de renforcement du régime autoritaire en place.

La note de Soliman Chaouche :

Cette note est le fruit d’une collaboration entre le CEDEJ Khartoum, le CFEE, l’Observatoire pluriannuel des enjeux politiques et sécuritaires dans la Corne de l’Afrique et le Conseil régional de l’Aquitaine.

L’Observatoire pluriannuel des enjeux politiques et sécuritaires dans la Corne de l’Afrique est financé par la Direction Générale des Relations Internationales et de la Stratégie (DGRIS) et par le Laboratoire Les Afriques dans le Monde (LAM, UMR CNRS 5115) de Sciences Po Bordeaux (



Publication – The legal statute of Nuba people in South Kordofan and the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ rights, By Philippe Gout

Philippe Gout is a Phd candidate in international law at the Institute of Higher International Studies (Paris 2 Panthéon Assas). He was granted a scholarship from the CEDEJ.

His article deals with the rigidity of the international statute on indigenous peoples and of the absence of a pragmatic approach which would enable its application in specific situations.

The article specifically addresses the situation of Nuba populations from South Kordofan. The heterogeneity of Nuba groups, as well as the interests pursued by the different Nuba actors, show the artificiality of the claims in favor of a unified legal statute. Actors instantiate their claims for this protective status through an ongoing, unfinished process of objectiying their unified identity.
Besides, recent innovations of the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ rights do not help the clarification of a unified statute for Nuba people. Last but not least, the structural dualism of Sudanese constitutional law definitely excludes the eventuality that such unified statute applies in the Sudanese legal order.

The research on Sudan highlighted at two recent international scientific conferences in Paris

The research about Sudan was highlighted at two scientific conferences that were held recently in Paris: the 6th European Conference on African Studies (ECAS 2015) and the 1st Conference of the group of scientific interest (GIS) on the Middle-East and on Muslim Worlds.

Untitled Collective mobilizations in Africa: Contestation, Resistance, Revolt”, the 6th European Conference on African Studies (ECAS 2015) was held in Paris from July 8th to 10th. Among the objectives of this international conference, ECAS 2015 aimed to promote the emergence of new concepts and issues of research on Africa in order to better identify and understand the current changes in the African continent, as well as the historical roots of those changes.

We are pleased to see that several Phd candidates/researchers associated with CEDEJ-Khartoum has participated to this conference. Anne-Laure Mahé, from the University of Montreal, has introduced her paper untitled “Thriving on chaos: violent conflict as a factor of authoritarian resiliency in Sudan”. Philippe Gout, a Phd student in International Law with University Paris 2 Panthéon Assas, has presented his paper “The halt of ICC’s war crimes investigations in Darfur: the limits of Prosecutor’s definition of the crime of genocide and the full-scale resistance to ICC’s investigations”. Dr. Raphaëlle Guibert, researcher in political sciences, has presented her research about gold mining – “Le gouvernement de l’or au Soudan: remodelage des pratiques et contrôle du secteur”. And Dr. Elena Vezzadini, an associate researcher with CEDEJ-Khartoum and with the University of Bergen, has also contributed to this conference.

Furthermore, several researchers specialized in Sudan were present at the conference: Dr. Siri Lamoureux, Dr. Griet Steel, Dr. Clémence Pinaud and Dr. Lotjes de Vries.

Another international scientific conference can be noted: from July 7th to 9th, the 1st Conference of the group of scientific interest (GIS) on the Middle-East and on Muslim Worlds was held in Paris. This international conference aimed to create an overview of the current state of the French research, with the contribution of numerous foreign guests. Its objective was to encourage the collaboration between researchers, as well as the improvement of the visibility of the scientific studies on the Middle-East and on Muslim Worlds.

In this conference as well, we are pleased to see that research on Sudan was highlighted: Dr Raphaëlle Guibert has introduced her work about the Sudanese Islamic experience – “Bourgeois islamiste vs  entrepreneur  nomade  ?  Oppositions  et  convergences  des  modèles  de  la  réussite dans  l’expérience  islamique  soudanaise” ; as for Dr Iris Seri-Hersch, she has presented her research about the Anglo-Egyptian Sudan – « Arabisation, Islamisation et (dé)colonisation dans  le  Soudan anglo-­égyptien (1946-­1964)».

Publication – Gender, Home and Identity: Nuer repatration to South Sudan, by Katarzyna Grabska

How and where did returning Nuer refugees make their ‘homes’ in southern Sudan? How were gender relations and identity redefined as a result of war, displacement and return to post-war communities? And how were those displaced able to recreate a sense of home, community and nation?

During the civil wars in southern Sudan (1983-2005) many of the displaced Sudanese, including many Nuer, were in refugee camps in Kenya and Ethiopia. In the aftermath of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement, they repatriated to southern Sudan. Faced with finding long-lost relatives and local expectations of ‘proper behaviour’, they often felt displaced again.
Gender, home and identityThis book follows the lives of a group of Nuer in the Greater Upper Nile region. The narratives of those displaced and those who stayed behind reveal the complexity of social change, in particular, the crucial yet relatively unconsidered transformation of gender and generational relations, and how this has impacted on state formation in what is now South Sudan.
Katarzyna Grabska is a research fellow with the Department of Anthropology and Sociology of Development at the Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies (IHEID) in Geneva. She is also an associate researcher at the CEDEJ-Khartoum.

PUBLICATION – Multidimensional Change in Sudan (1989–2011) Reshaping Livelihoods, Conflicts and Identities, Edited by Barbara Casciarri, Munzoul A.M. Assal and François Ireton

It is our pleasure to announce the recent publication of Multidimensional Change in Sudan (1989-2011): Reshaping Livelihoods, Conflicts and Identities, edited by Barbara Casciarri, Munzoul A.M. Assal and François Ireton and published by Berghahn. This collective book is in many ways linked with the CEDEJ Khartoum’s work.


Based on fieldwork largely collected during the CPA interim period by Sudanese and European researchers, this volume sheds light on the dynamics of change and the relationship between microscale and macroscale processes which took place in Sudan between the 1980s and the independence of South Sudan in 2011.

Contributors’ various disciplinary approaches—socio-anthropological, geographical, political, historical, linguistic—focus on the general issue of “access to resources.” The book analyzes major transformations which affected Sudan in the framework of globalization, including land and urban issues; water management; “new” actors and “new conflicts”; and language, identity, and ideology.

Barbara Casciarri is Associate Professor at the Department of Sociology, University Paris 8. She edited with A. M. Ahmed a special issue of Nomadic Peoples 13, 1 (2009), “Pastoralists under pressure in present-day Sudan” and with M. Van Aken a special issue of Journal des anthropologues 132-133 (2013), “Anthropology and Water(s).”

Munzoul A. M. Assal is Associate Professor of Social Anthropology and Deputy Director of the Peace Research Institute, University of Khartoum. Publications include Diaspora Within and Without Africa: Homogeneity, Heterogeneity, Variation (co-edited with Leif Manger, 2006), and forthcoming Fifty Years of Anthropology in the Sudan: Past, Present and Future (co-edited with Musa Adam Abdul-Jalil).

François Ireton is a Socio-Economist and Researcher at French National Center of Scientific Research, working in the Centre Jacques Berque, Rabat. He has co-edited Dynamiques de la pauvreté en Afrique du Nord et au Moyen Orient (2005) and L’Egypte au présent. Inventaire d’une société avant révolution (2011).



Migration and exile in the Horn of Africa: State of knowledge and current debates – Khartoum, 16 – 18 November 2015

Call for Paper

CEDEJ (French Research Centre for Social Sciences) in Khartoum and CFEE (French Centre for Ethiopian Studies) in Addis Ababa invite interested participants to a scientific conference that will take place in Khartoum, 16-18 November, 2015.

Supported by the Institut français in Paris, the conference aims to create an overview of the current state of research on migrations in the Horn of Africa. It will focus on the recent fieldwork conducted in the migrants’ and exilees’ areas of origins, transit and destination.

Mobility is a major socio-political and economic dynamic in the history of this region. African and European researchers have, for a long time, been examining the different scales and dynamics of migratory flows. Empirical approaches will be emphasized during the conference in order to provide an overview of the existing social science research on migration within the Horn of Africa.

Increasing internal migration combined with a growing number of displaced people in the sub-region (especially Somalia, Ethiopia, and Sudan) have caught the media attention, as the number of deathly shipwrecks in the Mediterranean sea involving migrants from the Horn region has skyrocketed in the recent years, particularly since the beginning of 2015.

This trend calls for a more attentive analysis of the various types of mobility and of the diverse impacts of such migrations. Such approach brings to examine how the diverse ramifications of migration are restructuring political and socio-economic relations at regional as well as national levels. The link between pastoralism and internal migrations is of great significance in this respect. More broadly, migration needs to be linked with regional developmental and economic disparities, transformations in livelihoods, and urbanization in a context of political, economic as well as environmental instability.

Local levels of internal mobility (whether “voluntary” or “forced”) cannot be isolated from trans-border dynamics. The explorations of migratory flows, including those of refugees and displaced persons across borders in the region (Somalia-Kenya, Eritrea-Ethiopia, South Sudan-Uganda, Sudan-Chad, Egypt-Soudan, etc.) as well as across the Red Sea, have demonstrated that refugee and migrant trajectories constitute a series of stages and routes of goings and comings, including commuter trajectories. Seasonal migrations and forced displacements caused by violence, conflicts and drought stand side by side with regional migrations towards countries which are perceived as being safer and better equipped to offer opportunities for a new life, or at least for survival.

These cross-border local migrations are linked to broader migration processes, which are a part of international mobility within a particularly unstable and challenging context. These aforementioned elements are due to protracted and contemporary conflicts. They are also embedded in authoritarian political systems, and affected by the policies deployed by international organizations in order to alleviate the lack of state regulations where states are supposed to be too fragile.

The Horn of Africa constitutes a frontier-region from more than one vantage point since it encompasses several heterogeneous migratory flows:

 – Intra-regional migrations primarily linked with conflicts but also with economic and climatic catastrophes;

– Migrations to the oil-producing Gulf countries,

– Migrations to European countries and Israel, via Egypt or Libya.

Evidently, it is the migratory flow to European countries that is of special focus to the European Union as well as the major international organizations. While the international aid resources diminish and the immigration and asylum policies in European countries become more and more hostile towards those migrants arriving from the Horn of Africa, it seems pertinent to reevaluate the conditions that favour migrations in/from the region.

Funding policy related to humanitarian aid and development projects in the region is to be scrutinized, as well as the contribution of the diasporas (like the Somali and Sudanese diasporas in Great Britain, the Sudanese diaspora in Egypt, or the Eritrean Diaspora in Sweden and in the United States) to the economic viability of the country of origin or even to the very survival of the migrant communities scattered between African cities and refugee camps.

In this conference, we intend to distance ourselves from the studies that focus mainly on the causes of departure (the ‘why’ question), as a way to underscore instead the dynamics and conditions of mobility (the ‘how’ question).

We invite papers that elaborate the following themes, among others:

– What are the connections between the different scales of migration? To what extent are they interdependent? In this way, we avoid dualistic classifications which separate internal and international migrations, and rather favour the analysis of places of departure, transit and arrival, experiences of exile as well as circular and return migration.

– What are the recent developments of these migrations? How do they affect, at different scales, the political and economic situation of the countries of origin, transit and destination?

– What are the diverse networks and agents that encourage, support and benefit from the processes of migration? What role do the new technologies and communication networks play in influencing and orienting the pathways of migrants?

– What are the institutional, economic, political and social modalities that frame the experiences of migrants in the places of origin, transit and destination? To what extent are they heterogeneous and what are the interfaces between them?

– In what ways does the experience of migration affect and transform identities, statuses and social relations of individual migrants and their groups?

– To what extent can interdisciplinary approaches contribute to a deeper understanding of migratory processes?

We encourage a close consideration of generational and gender sensitive lines of analysis in addressing these themes.

Please send abstracts of a maximum of 400 words and a short biographical note no later than 23 May, 2015, to and Please indicate if your institution can support your travel expenses and become a partner of the event, or if, on the contrary, you require a financial support from the organisers of the conference. Due to limited funding, only a small number of travels will be covered.

 Scientific Committee:

– Katarzyna Grabska (IHEID, CEDEJ Khartoum)

– Hélène Thiollet (CNRS, Science Po)

– Alice Franck (CEDEJ Khartoum)

– David Ambrosetti (CFEE)

Olivier Mongin: Urban Seminars Series Second Edition

Olivier Mongin presented a paper entitled « The city of flows, the two sides of globalization » during a seminar held at the Sharjah Hall the 24 of February in Khartoum and organized by the CEDEJ in collaboration with the Faculty of Economic and Social Studies, the Faculty of Architecture, the Faculty of Geography of the University of Khartoum. The seminar, translated from french to arabic, by Dr Azza Ahmed A. Aziz (SOAS – University of London),  was followed by a rich exchange between Mr Mongin and the audience of students and professors in presence of presence of Dr Hassan El Hajj, dean of the Faculty of Economic and Social Studies, Dr Gamal M. Hamid, dean of the Faculty of Architecture, Dr Ahmed El Faig, Dean of the Faculty of Geography, Dr Alice Franck, coordinator of the CEDEJ-Khartoum, Dr Ibtissam Sati, Deputy dean Faculty of Economic and Social Studies.

Olivier Mongin aims to demonstrate that globalization is not only an acceleration and intensification of exchanges of people, goods and information but it is first an anthropological change toward a mainly urban way of life. Such a change demands first one measure the current global turmoil. The developing countries now represent 95% of the world’s urban growth. Nine hundred million people live in what we refer to the historic city, when more than one billion live in favelas, slums and other illegal cities. Two more billion are living in contemporary urbanizations, a collection of diffuse cities, infinite cities, dispersed towns, etc. The city has thus been diluted but also more widespread. Olivier Mongin stresses the need to be aware of the stakes of this transformation of the urban experience by highlighting three major trends worldwide: flows tend to prevail over the places, especially with the Internet and the development of fast transport; urban diversity is declining everywhere, the privatization of life and public space is increasing.

For a better understanding of the urban element within globalization, Olivier Mongin relies on personal trips, readings and diverse artistic experiences hence developing an original analysis of the modalities of this supremacy of flows over places. From this perspective, he outlines a number of reflections linked to a paramount consideration of context and environment, including  the ecological, but also addressing issues of democracy and urban governance.

Olivier Mongin is a famous French essayist and philosopher. He was the director of the journal “Esprit” for over 20 years. Alongside the direction of this journal Olivier Mongin equally conducts publishing activities in various collections focusing on societal issues, philosophy and town planning. He has published books on different topics especially about democracy, the concept of “laughter” and about the city during the time of globalization.

Metropolisation and in between Spaces in the Greater Khartoum – New Research Program

The Cedej – Khartoum is starting a new research program in partnership with the University of Khartoum and the University Paris 8 with the support of the AUF (Agence Universitaire de la Francophonie). The project will start in march 2015.

This research project aims to analyze the stakeholder’s plays and the power relations revolving around the rural-urban linkages inside the Greater Khartoum conurbation. The diversity of those peripheral areas under permanent recharacterizations is the starting point of this project.

The program supervisors are: Dr Alice Franck (CEDEJ Khartoum, University Paris 1), Dr Munzul Assal (University of Khartoum), Dr Barbara Casciarri (University Paris 8)

You will find more details in French and  in the documents attached


Metropolisation and in between spaces

Ongoing Research : Matthew Steele

Matthew Steele is a Ph.D student in Islamic Studies at Harvard University.  He researches jurisprudence and knowledge production in West and North Africa, with a particular focus on the intellectual history, texts, and communities that shaped legal scholarship from the 18th to early 20th centuries.  Matthew has previously conducted fieldwork in Yemen, Morocco, Mauritania, and Senegal.  He received his undergraduate degree at Swarthmore College and Master’s degree at Dartmouth College, where his work on customary law in Yemen was awarded the outstanding graduate thesis of 2012.

In Sudan, Matthew is serving as a Visiting Research Fellow at the University of Khartoum’s Department of Islamic Studies for the 2014/2015 academic year.  His current research project considers the development of Maliki and Shafi’I legal thought in Sudan, addressing how each of these two juridical schools developed epistemologies, institutions, and textual communities of learning that have not been adequately studied in scholarship on Islam in Sudan.

Urban Seminars Series : Ingeborg Denissen

The first Urban Seminar was held at the Sharjah Hall of the University of Khartoum. Ingeborg Denissen presented the result of her research in front audience of 50 researchers , students and members of different NGO’s and embassies. The seminar was chaired by the coordinator of the CEDEJ Khartoum, Dr Alice Franck,  by the Dean of the Faculty of Economic and Social Sciences, Dr Musa Adam Abdul-Jalil, and by the Head of the department of Anthropology, Dr Mohamed Osman Mohamed. Ingeborg Denissen introduced her PhD research about « The challenges of rapid urbanization – a comparison between Mexico City and Khartoum ». She was scientifically supported during her thesis by the CEDEJ Khartoum. The event is co organized by the Faculty of Economic and Social Studies of the University of Khartoum, the Dutch Embassy and the CEDEJ.

Urban Seminar at the Sharjah Hall
Urban Seminar at the Sharjah Hall

You will find below a summary in English and in Arabic of her presentation

Summary Negotiating Urban Citizenship English

Summary Negotiating Urban Citizenship Arabic

The CEDEJ Cairo in Khartoum

The Director of the CEDEJ Cairo, M. Bernard Rougier, and M. Roman Stadnicky, researcher at the CEDEJ had visited Khartoum during November in order to meet the Khartoum team. During this work visit they attended a presentation of the team and researchers of the CEDEJ Khartoum, a conference at the University of Khartoum.

At the presentation of the CEDEJ team the participants were : Bernard Rougier (Director of CEDEJ), Alice Franck (Coordinator of CEDEJ Khartoum), Roman Stadnicki (Researcher at CEDEJ Cairo),  Elena Vezzadini (Associate researcher CEDEJ Khartoum, University of Bergen),  Franck Derrien (Associate researcher CEDEJ Khartoum), Guillaume Sauloup (PhD Candidate University Paris 1), Netsereab Andom (PhD Candidate University of Khartoum), Noah Hamza (PhD Candidate University of Khartoum), Azza Musatafa (PhD Candidate University of Khartoum), Nathalie Coste (PhD Candidate Science Po Paris), Laure Crombé (PhD Candidate University Paris X)

Presentation meeting at CEDEJ Khartoum
Presentation meeting at CEDEJ Khartoum

They also participated in different workshops with the coordinator of the Khartoum branch and the Embassy about the future of the CEDEJ Khartoum and to strengthen the relations and partnership between Cairo and Khartoum.

Bernard Rougier, Alice Franck, Khalid El Siddig
Bernard Rougier, Alice Franck, Khalid El Siddig


Conference Justice in Sudan and South Sudan at Durham University

The department of Law and the department of History of Durham organize a conference the 16 and 17 of December in Durham about the Justice in Sudan and South Sudan. The conference brings together interdisciplinary research from History and Anthropology to International Security.

The speakers include Professor Abdelsalam Babiker and Professor Munzul Assal from the University of Khartoum.



Accreditation to supervise research (HDR) – Eric Denis

Eric Denis, from the CNRS and part of the Lab GEO-CITE, has submitted the 1 of  December for his accreditation to supervise research a synthesis of his research entitle « Ville, urbanisation et propriété: Egypte, Sud Soudan et Inde » (« City, Urbanization and property: Egypt, South Sudan, India ») at the University Paris 1. This synthesis is the result of years of fieldwork in Egypt, South Sudan and India.

You will find more details in French in the document attached.


Seminar – Observatory of the Horn Of Africa

A workshop organized by the Observatory of the Horn of Africa (coord. LAM, DAS) was held on 24 November in Paris, and supported by CEDEJ Khartoum. The focus was on politic, religion and conflicts in the Horn of Africa. Three researchers associated to CEDEJ participated to the workshop: Alice Franck, CEDEJ Khartoum coordinator,  as president of one panels, Raphaelle Chevrillon-Guibert, associate researcher at CEDEJ Khartoum, presented a paper on  « The Sudanese Islamist Regime and the post-2011 economic crises »,  and Azza Mustafa Ahmed, a PhD student associate at CEDEJ presented a paper on « Islam and political parties in Sudan : The National Islamic Front ».

You will find further information in the document attached.

Programme Séminaire Observatoire Corne Afrique 24 Novembre 2014