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Fellowships: 2019 Spring

CARI Fellowship program

2019 SAIS-CARI Fellowship

Photo credit: Shutterstock

Photo credit: Shutterstock

2019 Theme: Strategic Interests: China, Africa, and the Rest

The China Africa Research Initiative at the Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS-CARI) awards Fellowships on a competitive basis or by invitation to researchers, policy-makers, or journalists who wish to carry out research and write about an under-explored policy issue related to China-Africa engagement related.

In this round, proposals focused on China’s strategic interests and how they impact Africa, Africa’s traditional Western partners, or other key actors in Africa. We were particularly interested in research that examines: (1) The development-security nexus; (2) China’s military and maritime engagement in Africa; and (3) The impact of China’s rising influence on efforts to combat piracy and terrorism; debt distress and economic and political instability; and humanitarian crises. 

2019 Awardees

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Alessandro ARDUINO

Dr. Alessandro Arduino is the co-director of the Security & Crisis Management International Centre at the Shanghai Academy of Social Science (SASS-UNITO) and external affiliate at the Lau China Institute, King’s College London. Dr. Arduino’s two decades of experience in China encompass risk analysis and crisis management. His main research interests include, Belt & Road Initiative security, private military security companies, China’s political economy in the MESA region and sovereign wealth funds. He is the author of several books and he has published papers and commentaries in various journals in Italian, English and Chinese languages. His latest books are: Securing the Belt and Road. Initiative (Palgrave) - China’s Private Army. Protecting the New Silk Road (Palgrave) He has been appointed Knight of the Order of the Italian Star by the President of the Italian Republic.



Daniel Bednar, PhD, is a lecturer at Western University in Ontario who specializes in environmental governance, critical geopolitics, and satellite earth observation policy. His research topics include the governance of climate change adaptation in Canada, the geopolitics of outer space, and satellite data sharing policies.



Lina Benabdallah is Assistant Professor at Wake Forest University. She is also a CARI-affiliate research associate. Her research interests are centered on China’s foreign policy in Africa with a specific interest in security and military relations. Her current book manuscript examines China’s multilateral foreign policy in continental Africa and seeks to theorize the power dynamics within these relations. Other publications include a co-authored book chapter with Dan Large in New Directions in the Study of Africa and China (Routledge, 2018) and a recent article titled “Contesting the international order by integrating it: the case of China’s Belt and Road initiative” which appeared in the Third World Quarterly.

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Af’a’anwi Ma’abo CHE

Afa’anwi Ma’abo Che holds a Ph.D in Politics (with emphasis in International Relations, Conflict Analysis, Democratization Processes, and Quantitative Research Methods) from Swansea University, UK. Currently, he is a Senior Lecturer in International Relations and Peace Studies and the Deputy Director of postgraduate studies at Kampala International University, Uganda. He has previously served as a teaching fellow at Swansea University, UK and as a Lecturer, Director of Research, and Dean of Student Affairs at Kwararafa University, Nigeria. He regularly contributes to coding data on several African states for the Varieties of Democracy (V-Dem) Index, the world’s largest democracy measurement project. Afa’anwi has published in diverse outlets, including reputable Western scholarly and policy-oriented journals such as the UN-affiliated Peace and Conflict Review, Peace and Conflict Studies, and the International Journal on World Peace.

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Janet EOM

Janet Eom is a research associate, and the former research manager, at the China–Africa Research Initiative at the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies. Her research focuses on comparative studies of US and Chinese development policies towards Africa and the role of technology transfer in African industrialization. Previously, she worked in the Strategy and Policy Unit of the Office of the President in Rwanda and the Carnegie-Tsinghua Center for Global Policy in Beijing on issues of Chinese economic engagement in Africa. She holds a bachelor’s degree in social studies from Harvard University and a master’s degree in global affairs with a focus in economics and business from Tsinghua University, where she was a Schwarzman Scholar.

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Jyhjong HWANG

Jyhjong Hwang is a Ph.D. student in Political Science at Ohio State University, specializing in International Relations. Her research focus is in the politics of foreign aid, international development, and international cooperation. A former Peace Corps Education Volunteer in Namibia (2010-2012), she worked as CARI’s Senior Research Assistant from 2015 to 2018. She holds a B.A. in English and International Relations from Tufts University and an M.A. in International Economics and International Development from Johns Hopkins SAIS.

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Julie Klinger holds a PhD in Geography from the University of California, Berkeley, and is an assistant professor in the Frederick S. Pardee School of Global Studies at Boston University, where she co-directs the Land Use and Livelihoods Initiative at the Global Development Policy Center. She specializes in development, environment, and natural resource policy and practice, with extensive research experience in China, Brazil, Germany, and the US. Her recent book Rare Earth Frontiers: From Terrestrial Subsoils to Lunar Landscapes (Cornell University Press, 2017) received the 2017 Meridian Award from the American Association of Geographers for its “unusually important contribution to advancing the art and science of geography.”

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Daniel LARGE

Daniel Large is an Assistant Professor at Central European University’s School of Public Policy. He is also a Senior Non-Resident Fellow of the University of Nottingham’s China Policy Institute, and a Fellow of the Rift Valley Institute. His other publications include New Directions in the Study of Africa and China (Routledge, 2018), co-edited with Chris Alden; Sudan Looks East: China, India and the Politics of Asian Alternatives (Oxford: James Currey, 2011), co-edited with Luke Patey; and China Returns to Africa: A Rising Power and a Continent Embrace (London: Hurst, 2008), co-edited with Chris Alden and Ricardo Soares de Oliveira. 


Elijah MUNYI

Elijah N. Munyi is currently an Assistant Professor in International Relations at the United States International University – Africa. His research interests are in African International Relations particularly how African states international economic activity (arms sales, FDI, debt and trade) influences shifts in foreign policy  between African states and other actors such as China, the United States, the European Union and other international actors. Elijah obtained a PhD in International Relations from Aalborg University in Denmark, and a Post-doctoral award at Science Po, Bordeaux in France. 


Ying XIA

Ying Xia is a fifth year S.J.D student at Harvard Law School, writing her thesis on the development of Chinese multi-national corporations in Africa. Her areas of interest include business-government relations, international law and legal anthropology. Ying has a LL.M. from Harvard Law School, and a Master of Laws, Bachelor of Law and B.S. in Economics from Peking University.

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Shuwen (Ivy) ZHENG

Shuwen (Ivy) Zheng is a second year M.A. student at John Hopkins SAIS, concentrating on International Economics and China Studies. She has a B.A. from the University of Hong Kong in Economics and Finance. Before coming to SAIS, she worked in Kenya and Tanzania for about two years.