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Publications

Publications

The Institute publishes books, research reports, research papers, briefings and meeting reports in a range of formats. Publications cover policy, research, arts, culture and local knowledge in the countries of eastern and central Africa. Research publications—books, reports and papers—are peer-reviewed. Some RVI publications are also available in French and/or Arabic. Blogs can be read here.

The RVI is a signatory of the Budapest Open Access Initiative (2001); all publications are free for download in PDF format under Creative Commons licences. Print versions of most books and reports, and digital versions in Kindle and other specialist formats, are available for sale from Amazon and other online retailers, and from selected bookstores. Proceeds from sales are allocated to the Institute's Scholarship Fund, which provides support to researchers and activists from eastern and central Africa.

The views expressed in books and reports published by the RVI are those of the authors, not the Institute.

2019

South Sudan’s customary authorities play an important role in local government, justice, and as intermediaries or brokers between local communities and the government. While significant attention was paid to the role of customary authorities in South Sudan’s statebuilding project prior to the country’s secession in 2011, the start of South Sudan’s civil war in December 2013 reoriented the…

2019

A System of Insecurity: Understanding Urban Violence and Crime in Bukavu examines the role of state and non-state actors in the provision of security, and citizens’ perceptions of, experiences with and responses to insecurity in Bukavu, the capital of South Kivu province in the eastern Congo. Facing growing urban insecurity, the residents of Bukavu have taken matters into their own…

2019
Points clés Dans de nombreuses villes de l’est de la République démocratique du Congo, des groupes de jeunes sont impliqués dans le maintien de l’ordre en milieu urbain, opérant dans un espace se situant à la fois entre les acteurs étatiques et non étatiques et entre la gouvernance formelle et informelle. Si l’on doit à certains de ces groupes de jeunes une amélioration de la sécurité dans…
2019

Northern Bahr el-Ghazal, like much of South Sudan, is in a protracted state of social and economic crisis, rooted in generations of armed conflict, forced resettlements, and a shift towards a cash and market economy. Since the 1980s, family units and livelihoods have been destroyed, displaced or reworked by conflict and most people have been forced to engage in precarious work for survival.…

2019

The legacy of Somali piracy, the threat of terrorists transiting between Yemen and Somalia, and the deepening conflict in Yemen, mean international actors tend to view the Gulf of Aden through a security lens. This report outlines the local social and economic relations that criss-cross the maritime border between Yemen and Somalia, and which, despite being less visible to international policy…

2019
Key points In numerous cities in the eastern Congo, youth groups are involved in urban policing, operating in the space between state and non-state actors and formal and informal governance. While some youth policing groups are responsible for improvements in security in their neighbourhoods, others play a role in the deterioration of the local security environment. These groups may, at…
2019

Fifty years ago, most households in South Sudan produced the grain they ate, organizing agricultural labour and distributing small surpluses mostly through kinship and other social networks. Now, the majority of households buy most of their food. This transition from self-sufficiency to market dependence took place during long wars, which transformed or distorted almost every aspect of…

2019

This Q&A is an explainer on the rapid political changes that have taken place in Sudan over the last month. All 4 contributors are close collaborators with the Rift Valley Institute. Questions were posed by Magnus Taylor, RVI’s Senior Publications Manager. Alden Young and Naomi Pendle are co-directors of RVI’s Sudan and South Sudan field course, held this year in Ethiopia. For more…

2019

In May 2001, Somaliland’s citizens went to the polls to approve an interim constitution in a public referendum coordinated by the Government of Somaliland. The constitution called for multi-party politics and democratic elections. Since then, Somaliland has held a series of contested elections at different levels: local, parliamentary and presidential. Elections have become a familiar…

2019

Prophets—those recognised as having been ‘seized’ by a divinity—have played an important role in the history of South Sudan, particularly that of the Nuer people. They were seen as being powerful political actors and, alongside chiefs, important intermediaries for the colonial authorities. However, the influence of the Nuer prophets goes much further than mobilizing or de-mobilizing the Nuer…