Abdul-Gafar lectures in the Department of Political Science, Lagos State University and is a Research Associate at the African Centre for the Study of the United States (ACSUS), University of the Witwatersrand. A Social Science Research Council (SSRC) ‘Next Generation of Social Science in Africa’ Fellow (2013-2014), Doctoral Fellow at KU Leuven’s Centre for Research on Peace and Development (2013-2017), University of Edinburgh’s Centre of African Studies Catalyst Fellow (in 2019 and 2020), and an American Council of Learned Societies’ African Humanities Program Postdoctoral Fellow (2020-2021), his research is broadly centred around the “development question” in Africa with a strong bias for Africa-China relations, youth service, nation-building, research ethics and knowledge (re)production. He co-founded the Conflict Research Network West Africa (CORN–West Africa).
There has been renewed interest in the study of Africa-China relations. Among the areas that have attracted significant interest in academic literature and popular media is Chinese environmental footprint in Africa. However, existing literature on this subset of Africa-China relations predominantly overlooks the role of non-state actors. Given this gap, I will be working on a research project entitled “Governance from below? Non-state actors and Chinese environmental footprints in Africa – The case of Ghana” at MIASA. Specifically, I will engage two broad questions: (a) What motivates non-state actors to respond to Chinese environmental footprints in Ghana? (b) How have non-state actors in Ghana responded to Chinese environmental footprints? Building on my research interest in Africa-China relations (especially in understanding the role of non-state actors since 2015) and adopting Anthony Giddens’ Structuration Theory, the fellowship period will be used to achieve four main goals: (a) collect relevant primary data for – and complete – a draft paper on non-state actors and Chinese environmental footprint in Ghana; (b) write up an op-ed on my findings; (c) write a methodological paper that documents the research process, particularly taking account of the workability of the Global Ethics Toolkit; and (d) expand my scientific network.
Additional information about the researcher is available at the link:
Background works for the project
Mudasiru, S.O., Oshodi, A.T. & Fatai, A.S. (2016). “State and non-state actors in International Relations.” In: Ayo Omotayo, Kayode Taiwo & Olabisi Yusuff (eds.), Foundations of Social Sciences: A book of readings, Lagos: LASU Press, pp. 227-247.
Oshodi, A.T. (2015). “Between the dragon’s gift and its claws: China in Africa and the (un)civil fostering of ILO’s Decent Work Agenda.” In: Axel Marx, Jan Wouters, Glenn Rayp & Laura Beke (eds.). Global governance of labor rights: Assessing the effectiveness of transnational public and private policy initiatives. Massachusetts, US: Edward Elgar, pp. 190-208.
Oshodi, A.T. (2015). “Sino-pessimism versus Sino-optimism: Which way for Chinese Africana?” In: Charles Quist-Adade & Vincent Dodoo (eds.). Africa's many divides and Africa's future: Pursuing Nkrumah's vision of Pan-Africanism in an era of globalisation. Newcastle, UK: Cambridge Scholars Publishing, pp. 190-216.
Seteolu, F. & Oshodi, A.T. (2018). “Oscillation of two giants: Sino-Nigeria relations and the global south.” Journal of Chinese Political Science, 23(2): 257-285.