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Call for participation: ZASB Reflection, Practices and Ethics Day

Workshop ‘Research Network Africa’, 22 December 2017 (Veit Arlt)

The ZASB will hold its first Reflection, Practices and Ethics Day on 9 September 2021 and invites all members of the ZASB network, together with their international partners and partner organisations, to participate actively with a contribution and/or join in the organisation of the event.


Members of Basel’s African Studies network (ZASB) are actively seeking for ways to reduce inequity and inequality in partnerships with Africa and prioritise and strengthen Africa-centered scholarship and collaborative projects. Our discussions happen in the backdrop of global and local debates and movements addressing the legacies of imperialism and colonialism and continued racism, among them the Black Lives Matter and global Climate Justice movements, and the Restitution and Repatriation, the Rhodes Must Fall and Colonial Monuments debates.


The Day aims at a self-reflective and interdisciplinary discussion amongst the ZASB network and its partners of how to re-think and practice equitable partnerships and collaborations. In the pursuit of alleviating some of the current inequalities, we seek to address, explore and establish approaches and examples of transformative change.

We envision the Day as a space of vigorous interdisciplinary debate in order to open up and shift foundations, directly or indirectly, loudly or subversively, which shape the broader world of African Studies.


Possible themes relate to (de-) coloniality in African Studies, (de-) colonial heritage and decolonising movements, South-North cooperation, (institutional) power structures, equitable partnerships and inequalities alleviation principles, strategies and practices, digital humanity and environmental justice challenges, amongst others. 

Contributions & Participation

We invite contributions from and call for participation by students and scholars of all levels, activists and practitioners, i.e. NGOs, curators, artists and writers, amongst others, who are linked to the ZASB. Online contributions by ZASB partners based in Africa are highly encouraged. The ZASB network is therefore invited to actively distribute the Call amongst its partners. Contributions which present transformative approaches based on tangible ongoing practices, broadly conceived as projects, partnerships, initiatives, approaches, interventions, are particularly relevant.

As the Day should provide a broad platform for discussion, contributions are sought at different levels and in different forms, and may include:

  • individual or joint submissions for presentations;
  • proposals for (panel) discussions, workshops and/or round tables;
  • participation in the conceptualisation and organisation of the Day.

Programme and Format

The nature of the proposals and participation will shape the set-up of the Day. There will be ample time for discussions. Based on debated ideas, projects and visions, a final discussion will revolve around next steps.

The Day is planned in a hybrid face-to-face/online format. The participation from partners in Africa is highly welcomed and online participation is given. We do not envisage travels for the event in Basel. and input from partners in Africa highly welcome.


A brief application should indicate the proposed theme(s), project(s) and format(s) (half page), and/or your interest in participating in the programme conceptualisation and organisation. A short bio and possible background/motivation relevant to the Day’s purposes are appreciated.

Submission deadline: Wednesday, 2nd June 2021

Organiser: Centre for African Studies, University of Basel

Current members of the organising committee:

  • Guéladio Cissé, Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute
  • Marcel Dreier, Fund for Development and Partnership in Africa
  • Dag Henrichsen, Basler Afrika Bibliographien
  • Rita Kesselring, Institute of Social Anthropology
  • Luregn Lenggenhager, Centre for African Studies
  • Sonja Merten, Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute
  • Silke Oldenburg, Institute of Social Anthropology
  • Cassandra Thiesen-Mark, Department of History