I am a Mali expert with a MA in Politics (Rennes) and a PhD in African Studies (Vienna). I convene the MA programme in Film and History at the School of Oriental and African Studies, where I also teach on a number of undergraduate and graduate degree courses including “Muslim Societies in West Africa”, “African History on Film”, “Historical Perspectives on Gender in Africa” and “Slavery in West Africa in the 19th and 20th Centuries”.
I have regularly been to Mali since 1998. I spent almost 9 months in West Africa in 2003-2004 to research my PhD thesis. Apart from Mali, I have also been to Senegal, Burkina Faso, The Gambia, Ethiopia, South Africa and plan to go to Niger this year.
From 2008 to 2010 I managed a project to salvage 100 years of archival materials in Mali in cooperation with the Malian Ministry of Territorial Affairs, the French Embassy in Mali, the Cooperative Africana Microform Project. and the authorities of the District of Kayes. During this project, I trained ten Malian assistant archivists in Kayes for four months.
Concomitantly, I worked on my own research project and documentary film on the Memories of Slavery in Mali (Les Diambourou : Esclavage et émancipation à Kayes – Mali), spending in an all almost two years there from 2008 to 2010.
I regularly give expertise interviews in French and English for both Radio and TV, including France 24, BBC Afrique, BBC News, BBC World (TV and radio service), BBC 5 live, BBC 4, The Financial Times, The Independent, The Telegraph, Reuters and Science. I have also provided consultancy to the Austrian Development Agency, the Austrian Red Cross, the BBC, the UN, the USARAF and Albany Associates.