A new Academy of Finland project enhances equality in Africa through university cooperation

Professor Elina Oinas at the Swedish School of Social Science has been granted €600.000 from the Academy of Finland for her project EDIT: Equality as Democracy in Transformation.

The research project EDIT strives to strengthen societal capacity to enhance gender equality and thereby democracy and human rights in Africa. It does so by examining and supporting scholarship and teaching on gender in selected universities in Ethiopia and South Africa. The aim is to develop the research and teaching at the universities towards a more societally relevant and contextually attuned practice.

The project will analyze the universities and their societal engagements to better understand the overall principles and concrete processes for promotion of equality and democracy. These processes and the negotiations in feminist communities can teach lessons on how transformation processes towards equality can be enabled and strengthened, and what their dimensions are and what obstacles must be attended to.

Universities can be key drivers of societal change, but in this project this promise will be under investigation, rather than assumed.

The project was granted €600.00 funding by the Academy of Finland’s Programme for Development Research for the period 1.1.2019-31.12.2022. Academy of Finland’s funding decision.

Elina Oinas is a Professor of Sociology at the Swedish School of Social Science at the University of Helsinki. Her research interests comprehend the global South, gender, health, development and transnationalism.