Édith Nabos


Édith Nabos is an urban anthropologist. She holds a PhD from the University of Leipzig as part of the interdisciplinary program Doing the City: Socio-Spatial Navigation in Urban Africa, in which she studied the night in Bobo-Dioulasso, Burkina Faso. Since then, she has been working with Houd Kanazoé on taxi navigation and the use of gas as a fuel in Bobo-Dioulasso and Accra.

MIASA Project: Exploring energy use in urban transportation: taxi drivers stepping on the gas in Ghana and Burkina Faso

The use of gas as a fuel for public transport is a growing practice in many African cities. While the limited literature on the subject explains the phenomenon in terms of affordability, there is still much to be learned, especially when it comes to moving beyond the economic approaches to transport and mobility. Thus, drawing on the more or less recent postcolonial perspectives calling for new paradigms of mobility, and based on exploratory research in Ghana (Accra) and Burkina Faso (Bobo-Dioulasso), our aim is to take a closer look at the phenomenon by analysing it from the point of view of the actors, i.e. taxi drivers and passengers, but also mechanics or administrators. This project proposes to investigate the spatial, temporal but also the social and political implications of gas use in two West African countries with different business practices, legislation and languages. We argue that the combination of these approaches is very relevant to contribute on the one hand to a less Western perspective and on the other hand to a South-South comparison essential for understanding urban practices in Africa and beyond. 


2022. Ordinary Nights. Trajectories of Nocturnal Dwellers in Bobo- Dioulasso. PhD thesis. Universität Leipzig.

2021. Review: Affective Trajectories. Religion and Emotion in African Cityscapes. Dilger, Hansjörg; Bochow, Astrid; Burchardt, Marian; Wilhelm-Solomon, Matthew (eds.). Connections. A Journal for Historians and Area Specialists. https://connections.clio- online.net/review/id/reb-29760?language=de

2019. «Attendre seulement»? Revisiter l’escale au port sec de Bobo-Dioulasso à l’aune de la vie nocturne des chauffeurs, Afrique Contemporaine, 269-270(1), 59-73. https://www.cairn.info/revue-afrique-contemporaine-2019-1-page-71.htm

2019. «Les lumières font la beauté de la ville», Libération, 09.09.2019. https://www.liberation.fr/voyages/2019/10/09/les-lumieres-font-la-beaute-de-la-ville_1756181/ 


Junior Tandem Fellow August - December 2023