Meet the team

Team Leader: Laura Hammond

Laura has degrees in Anthropology from the University Wisconsin-Madison and did her undergraduate degree at Sarah Lawrence College. She has taught at Clark University, the University of Reading, and was a Visiting Fellow at the University of Sussex.

Conflict and Governance Key Expert: Vincent Chordi

Vincent has worked with UNHCR in the different countries of the region over two decades. He has extensive experience in designing and implementing emergency response for refugees and IDPs, in providing international protection and participating in the design of programmes linking relief and development including those leading to the creation of conditions conducive to the return and the reintegration of refugees and IDPs.

Oliver Bakewell

Migration Key Expert: Dr Oliver Bakewell

Oliver is a Senior Lecturer at the Global Development Institute, University of Manchester. His work focuses on the intersections between migration and mobility and processes of development and change, with an empirical focus on migration within Africa.

Senior Research Coordinator: Caitlin Sturridge

Caitlin has over ten years’ humanitarian and development experience working for think tanks, governments, the UN, NGOs and the private sector in the UK, East Africa and Latin America. She completed her MSc in Migration, Mobility and Development at SOAS in 2010 and is currently researching the links between mobility, livelihoods and the environment as part of her PhD at SOAS. Caitlin is based at Sahan.

Project Manager & Research Coordinator: Louisa Brain

Louisa has over five years’ development experience working on EU, DFID, Irish Aid and DFAT funded programmes in the Asia Pacific and Africa. She completed an MSc in Migration, Mobility and Development at SOAS in 2019, and also holds a BA in International Relations and a BSocSc in Development from the University of Queensland.

Research Team Leader: Lavender Mboya

Research Team Leader: Lavender Mboya

Lavender has experience working for UN agencies and local private institutions in Nairobi. She has a degree in International Studies and speaks French and intermediate German. Lavender is currently based at Sahan Research in Nairobi.

Advocacy and Outreach Manager: Padmini Iyer

Padmini has worked in East Africa since 2012 in research, advocacy, and evidence-based program design. She has a doctorate in anthropology from Rutgers University.

Communications Support: Chris Jordan, Emma Kelly and Robert Dawber

The University of Manchester’s Global Development Institute Communications Team provides support, helping make the research accessible and usable.

The research team

Isabella Amony

Isabella has over seven years’ experience in research, community engagement and health education and using both qualitative and mixed methods. Her research on refugees in Uganda has focused on gender, women and the environment. She works at Walokokwor Support Organisation.

Victoria Awiti

Victoria is an experienced lecturer of Political Science at Maseno University, Kenya. Her research interests are governance and stability; how various forms of governance interact to bring stability in fragile situations.

Peter Chonka

Peter is a Lecturer in Global Digital Cultures at King’s College London’s in the Department of Digital Humanities. His research focuses on the impacts of new media technologies on culture, politics, conflict dynamics, mobility and humanitarian communications in the Horn of Africa.

Yidnekachew Haile

Yidu is currently a PhD/Doctoral researcher at Royal Holloway University of London after winning the UKRI GCRF Technology Migration and Development scholarship. His research focuses on the role of ICTs/digital technologies in mobility and development in the Horn of Africa.

Alas Ibrahim

Alas is a social protection expert working at Banadir Regional Administration, Somalia. He is a Masters graduate in Development Studies and Management from Kampala International University. He has researched state formation, peace building and the humanitarian context in Somalia.

Asnake Kefale

Dr. Asnake is the Assistant Professor in the Department of Political Science and International Relations at Addis Ababa University. His research interests include, federalism, conflict management, political economy, and migration. He is also a senior adjunct researcher at the Addis Ababa based policy think-tank, Forum for Social Studies (FSS)

Farah Manji

Farah has a degree in International Relations and History from the LSE and a Masters in Middle Eastern Studies from Columbia University. She has over a decade of programmatic and research experience with organizations including the World Bank’s Fragility, Conflict, and Violence Group, the International Labour Organisation, the Overseas Development Institute (ODI), and the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace. Her research interests include forced displacement, social justice, and foreign policy.

Allan Mukuki

Allan Mukuki is presently a PhD Candidate with his research focusing on refugee law in the EAC region. He is currently based at Strathmore Law School.  His research focus areas include Forced Migration & Displacement studies, Public International Law, International Humanitarian Law, International Criminal Law and Policy Development in various aspects of municipal and international law.

Abdinasir Osman

Professor Osman has Over 30 years professional experience in humanitarian interventions, institutional capacity building training, consulting and researching, strategic planning, teaching at universities in Somalia, conflict management, peace and state building.

Michael Owiso

Michael has worked in various universities in Kenya, teaching subjects in political science and international relations. He also has extensive experience in the humanitarian sector, focusing on displacement, peace building and conflict resolution. His interests are inter and multidisciplinary research on migration, refugees and displaced persons in Africa.

Bishar Aden Yussuf

Bishar is a project field researcher for REF. He also works at the Centre of Education and Development, Somalia, and Savana consult company. He has over 7 years research experience, focusing on peace building security, gender issues and impacts of the organizational support in Somalia.