Tunisia's transition to democracy

Webseminar April 25

The organization ILAC, International Legal Assistance Consortium, is working with rebuilding justice systems. Within the MENA Rule of Law programme a seminar is held on April 25th 14.00-17.00 in Tunis. It is titled 'From Ben Ali to democracy and rule of law - the Tunisian experience in an international perspective' dealing with different aspects of Tunisia's transition to a democratic country. The seminar will be webcasted at Bambuser and here at the NAI website. The MENA Rule of Law programme (the website opens in new window) is co-funded by Swedish Sida.

Read more about the ILAC -seminar (pdf opens in new window).

Young aspiring elite

In Rundu, a town of 60,000 inhabitants in Namibia, social anthropologist Mattia Fumanti has conducted research on the formation of local elites. In looking at the town’s history, from the colonial to the postcolonial time, Fumanti has explored the emergence of different generations of elites in the town public space. His work shows how the process of elite formation in a small Namibian town is fraught with contestation as different generations try to gain distinction and recognition in public.

In Rundu two generations of elites, a liberation elite of SWAPO educationalists, and a youthful educated elite competed for distinction in public through distinctive rhetoric.
– While the SWAPO elite emphasised their role in the liberation struggle and their achievements in education, the younger, aspiring elite talked more about performance in power – how they felt dissatisfied with the existing leadership and lack of delivery of public services. However, they seldom challenged the SWAPO elite in public. Instead they tried to negotiate behind the scenes for power, says Mattia Fumanti.

A selection of online resources

NAI library


New NAI Associate

Covered the Biafran war as a reporter

Pekka Peltola is a new NAI Associate. In this role, he will be a resource for the Nordic Africa Institute by participating in seminars and moderating panels, among other roles. His background is in journalism, but he also worked for many years with trade unions as well as for the Finnish ministry of labour. In 1979, he began to work on behalf of Finnish trade unions in SWAPO camps based in Angola, organised and taught classes on trade unions, what they are and how they work. His doctoral thesis discusses the role of Namibian workers in the liberation struggle.
However, Pekka Peltola’s African experience had begun even earlier, when he was a reporter covering the Biafran war.

NAD 2014 - Call for papers

The Nordic Africa Days (NAD) is the biannual conference of the Nordic Africa Institute organised for the past 15 years in the Nordic Countries. In 2014 the Nordic Africa Days is taking place in Uppsala, Sweden, September 26-27. Paper proposals should be submitted no later than May 15th 2014.

Read all details about submission of paper proposals here.

How to study Africa

The NAI library has revised and updated 'Studying Africa: A Guide to the Sources'.
The guide provides practical advice on handbooks, databases, statistics and offers other support for literature and fact searches. It is available online without cost – download here.


Reference source on late 20th century history of national liberation in Southern Africa and the role of the Nordic countries: www.liberationafrica.se

The available materials are mainly in the Nordic languages, but where possible, English is indicated. The website holdings include interviews with important actors, photographs, publications and posters and pins from 1960-1996.



If you wish to join the e-mail list and receive information about the coming lectures and seminars,  please fill out the order form.


  • Founded in 1962
  • Jointly financed by the Nordic Countries

with emphasis on social sciences

specialized in modern Africa

more than 700 titles on development, human rights, conflict, culture...

and public events

for Nordic and African scholars