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17.09.2018 11:17 Alter: 273 days

Recovering, Digitizing and Practicalizing Africa's Indigenous Knowledge

Call for Papers

Theme: Recovering, Digitizing and Practicalizing Africa's Indigenous Knowledge
Type: 1st International Conference on African Studies
Institution: African Studies Research Center, Kisii University
Location: Kisii (Kenya)
Date: 15.–20.7.2019
Deadline: 1.12.2018

Following broadly defined and multi-purpose transdisciplinary
approaches to areal studies, the African Studies Research Center,
Kisii is holding its first international conference focusing on four
largely circumscribed thematic research areas under the theme of
“Recovering, digitizing and practicalizing Africa Indigenous
Knowledge”. The goal in accordance with the objective of the emerging
African Studies Research Center at Kisii University is to provide,
fieldwork-based documentation of those traditional ways of knowing
and doing things across nations of Africa spanning different
institutions as well as give theoretical account of the same. The
intent is to bring together scholars and practitioners alike to make
sense of indigenous ways of knowing and of doing things across the
continent, and to analyze persistent issues in a way that would
liaise with science to proffer viable solutions that in turn would
inform practice. Essentially, the conference is to transition us from
Knowledge to practical applications.

The ways of life on the continent are not static, the various
cultures of African peoples continue resiliently in responding to
those persistent questions of life and newer ones. It therefore does
become necessary to harness the information that generations have
produced over the lifespan of a community and on which they have
relied to sustain their people and meet their needs.

Keynote Speakers

- Adams Bodomo: Professor of African Studies and Director of the
 Global African Diaspora Studies (GADS) Research Platform at the
 University of Vienna, Austria
- Bruce Connell: Professor of Linguistics, Glendon College,
 Linguistics and Language Studies, York University, Toronto
- Erdmute Alber: Professor and Chair of Social Anthropology, Bayreuth
 University, Germany
- Esther Obonyo: Associate Professor. School of Engineering Design,
 Technology and Professional Programs
- Heather Brookes: Professor and Chief research officer SARChi
 Linguistics University of cape town
- Salikoko Mufwene: The Frank J. McLoraine Distinguished Service
 Professor, Department of Linguistics and Humanities Collegiate
 Division. University of Chicago
- John Akama: Professor of Tourism and cultural resource management.
 Kisii University
- Victoria Nyst: Senior University Lecturer, Leiden University,


We invite submission of abstract for impactful and action-oriented
oral and poster conversations that would lead to building a
functional bridge that links the past with the future, that connects
the traditional to the global, and that affords the transitioning of
the analogue to the digital. We would like to explore ways to harness
and conserve existing information for the creation of new solutions
while assuring the integrity of the underlying socio-cultural

We invite papers, seminars and workshops within the general scope of
the conference widely themed as: “Recovering and digitizing
indigenous African knowledge” with the following four subthemes: 

- Language and Gesture Studies
- Cultural, Indigenous and Heritage Studies [Arts, Philosophy,
 Orature and musicology]
- Political and Economic Studies [Political, economic and Social
- Agro-Science, Health and Technology [Environment, Health and

We invite abstracts (500 words maximum, excluding references) of
unpublished work for oral presentations, posters, and theme sessions.
Abstract due December 1, 2018.

Submit abstracts to:

A selected number of essays will be published in the conference

Workshop and Practical Training

During the conference, we would like to offer training on different
techniques and areas of scholarship in the social-sciences. We
encourage workshops and trainings on extant innovative practices in
specific disciplines. To this effect, we welcome workshops and
hands-on training on different programs or software that would equip
participants to conduct research in the three areas of the
conference’s foci. For example:

- Training in collecting oral data, in the use of GIS, and archival
- Training in language documentation, specifically, (how to elicit
 the sounds of a language, lexicology, translation, grammar and
- How to obtain gestures and analyze gestures
- How to code different data and analyze large scale data
- Data mining and information processing

These are suggestions, participants are encouraged to propose
discipline specific training and workshop to equip researchers with
latest information.


August Nyankundi
Department of Language, Literature and Linguistics
Kisii University