Nigeria’s Prof Omolade Adunbi appointed director of University of Michigan African Studies Center


The African Studies Center (ASC) at the University of Michigan (U-M) has announce the appointment of Omolade Adunbi, professor of Afroamerican and African Studies, as its new director.

A statement posted on University of Michigan website said he was appointed as ASC’s new director effective July 1, 2022.

Professor Adunbi is a political and environmental anthropologist. He received his PhD in anthropology from Yale University and his undergraduate degree in philosophy in Nigeria, where he lived and studied before going to the United States for his graduate education.

He joined U-M in 2010 as an assistant professor in the Department of Afroamerican and African Studies (DAAS) and recently served as an associate chair for the department’s African Studies Program. He is affiliated with the Program in the Environment, the Donia Human Rights Center, and the Program in Anthropology and History at the University of Michigan. He has also been an active member of ASC’s executive committee.

Professor Adunbi is an active and innovative researcher with varied experiences that include human, environmental and prodemocracy activism in his home country, Nigeria, during the era of military authoritarianism. His research interest interrogates the dynamics of power, citizenship, natural resource extraction, claim-making, and militancy in Nigeria. Adunbi’s first book, Oil Wealth and Insurgency in Nigeria (Indiana University Press, 2015), won the Royal Anthropological Society of Great Britain and Ireland’s Amaury Talbot book prize for the best book in the Anthropology of Africa in 2017. His second book, Enclaves of Exception: Special Economic Zones and Extractive Practices in Nigeria, published by Indiana University Press, was released in May 2022.

He is currently working on a new research project that engages with questions of climate politics and the ways in which environmental groups and activists use social media to promote their advocacy for the environment. Adunbi is the author of numerous articles in journals such as Cambridge Journal of Anthropology, Africa, Journal of the International Institute at Cambridge, African Studies Review, Extractive Industries and Society, Journal of Material Culture, Information and Society, and Political and Legal Anthropology Review.

He serves on the editorial board of various journals such as Africa, Current Anthropology, Social Analysis, Political and Legal Anthropology Review, etc.


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