Staff at Department of Food and Resource Economics (IFRO) – University of Copenhagen

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Paul Austin Stacey

Paul Austin Stacey


I research marginalisation and exclusion, and reforms that aim to overcome these processes. This includes the role of the state, the production of power relations, and governance. I examine interactions between state institutions and non-state actors, traditional authorities, hometown associations, youth groups, and community based organisations.

Related, I research the governance of natural resources, contests over land, and the struggles of competing institutions to enforce their will. 

My post doc focuses on the governance of large scale informal settlements in Africa. This concentrates on Old Fadama in Accra, Ghana, which has become renowned as a large scale dumping ground for toxic electronic waste (It earned the dubvious title of the most pollutted site on the planet in November 2013 ( 

The reaserch investigates how claims to land are made and legitimised, and how different groups win and lose access and control over land, and what these processes mean for local understandings of belonging and citizenship.

My PhD (2012) focuses on land-related disputes and the role of traditional authority in the Kpandai District in Northern Ghana. 

My research endevours to answer questions like:

Who wins and loses from the sweeping programmes of land reform being implemented across sub saharan Africa? 
What does it mean economically, politically, and socially that African governments do not have control over large scale 'illegal' urban settlements? 
What do initiatives such as REDD+ hold in store for groups who can't obtain status as 'indigenes'? 

Post doc. project title: Negotiating and contesting citizenship and property in an informal urban settlement in Accra, Ghana

Financed by The Danish Council for Independent Research | Social Sciences

January 2014 - December 2016


ID: 93713687