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The Michigan State University African Studies Center has 170 faculty with experience on Africa, probably the largest in the nation, including the largest faculties in social science (40) and in economics and agricultural economics (16). The Center features many other scholars in African languages, the arts and humanities, education, agricultural and natural sciences, health and medicine and other fields. The faculty members are listed alphabetically by college and departmental affiliation, noting geographical areas of Africa experience, and teaching and research interests.


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Stephen Esquith Department: Residential College Arts and Human Dean
Countries/Research: Mali
Email: esquith(at)

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Biography: Stephen L. Esquith has been working on ethical problems in developing countries since 1990, when he was a senior Fulbright scholar in Poland. His primary scholarly work is Intimacy and Spectacle (Cornell, 1994), a critique of classical and modern liberal political philosophy. Steve has also been involved in numerous civic engagement projects in the public schools, including an exchange program between local elementary school children in the United States and schoolchildren in a community school in Kati, Mali. He led study abroad programs focusing on ethical issues in development in Mali in 2004, 2006, 2008, and 2010 and spent the 2005-06 academic year teaching and working with colleagues at the University of Bamako as a senior Fulbright scholar. After consulting with the Malian Ministry for Reconciliation in 2013, he returned to Mali in summer 2014 to lead a new study abroad program there to develop a local dialogue forum in collaboration with students and faculty from the Ecole Normal Superieure in Bamako and the Institute for Popular Education in Kati.

Emine Evered Department: History
Email: evered(at)

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Biography: As a historian of the Middle East and North Africa, Emine Evered specializes in analyzing late Ottoman and early nationalist accounts of education and public health as a means to understanding themes in modernization, nation-building, and ethno-religious particularization. As an historian of the Middle East and North Africa, Emine Ö. Evered specializes in analyzing late Ottoman and early nationalist accounts of education and public health as a means to understanding themes in modernization, nation-building, and ethno-religious particularization.  She earned her PhD in History with a minor in Near Eastern Studies from the University of Arizona.  She also holds an MA from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and graduate and undergraduate degrees from institutions in Turkey.

Amara Ezeamama Department: Psychiatry
Email: ezeamama(at)

Laura Fair Department: History
Countries/Research: Tanzania
Email: fairl(at)

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Biography: Laura Fair is a historian of Tanzanian urban social, cultural and gendered history. Dr. Fair teaches a broad range of courses from surveys of pre-colonial and colonial Africa to graduate seminars on oral history theory, method and praxis. Dr. Fairs current project is a wide-ranging study of commercial cinema in colonial and postcolonial Tanzania. Cinemas, Cities and Audiences: The Business and Pleasures of Movie-going in Twentieth Century Tanzania, explores changes in exhibition, distribution and reception from 1900-2014.

Anne Ferguson Department: International Studies & Programs Dean
Countries/Research: Malawi; Zimbabwe; Nigeria; Tanzania; Democratic Republic of the Congo; Zambia
Email: fergus12(at)

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Biography: Dr. Anne Ferguson, GenCen Co-Director and Professor of Anthropology, does research and teaching on development studies, gender, agricultural and environmental change, and medical anthropology. Her early work in El Salvador in medical anthropology centered on the impacts of multinational pharmaceutical firms' business practices on health care provided at pharmacies, and on the integration of these companies' products into lay and alternative medical practices.In the mid-1980s, Dr. Ferguson shifted her research focus to Southern Africa, where she has studied development initiatives in the areas of agriculture, fisheries, and water sector reform. Currently, her research centers on the gender dimensions of Malawi's new water and land reform policies. Much of Dr. Ferguson's research has been carried out in collaboration with colleagues at MSU and at the University of Malawi. Support for her research has come from the McArthur Foundation, the Social Science Research Council, Rockefeller Foundation, and the US Agency for International Development (USAID).

Eunice Foster Department: Plant Soil and Microbial Sciences
Countries/Research: Botswana; Ghana; Malawi; Tanzania; Zambia; Zimbabwe
Email: fosteref(at)

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Biography: Dr. Eunice Foster is a professor in the Crop and Soil Sciences Department. Previous research from Dr. Foster consisted of crop physiology, nitrogen partitioning and remobilization, physiological mechanisms of drought resistance in legumes. Dr. Foster's current work focuses on student recruitment & development and K-20 STEM Education.

Masako Fujita Department: Anthropology Social Science
Countries/Research: Kenya
Email: masakof(at)

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Biography: Masako Fujita is a biological anthropologist specializing in contemporary human variation in micronutrient storage and metabolism. Masako's research focuses on the health and evolutionary implications of mother and offspring nutrition. Masako's research is a combination of epidemiological, biomarker and ethnographic methods to investigate biocultural pathways to malnutrition, particularly clarifying why some nutritional deficiencies and health issues persist today despite public health intervention efforts. Masako's work also evaluates the applicability of clinical nutrition and health research methods to anthropological studies in resource-poor, non-clinical settings.

Stephen P. Gasteyer Department: Sociology
Countries/Research: Mali
Email: gasteyer(at)

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Biography: Dr. Stephen P. Gasteyer is an Assistant Professor of Sociology at Michigan State University. Dr. Gasteyer’s research focuses on the nexus between water, land, community development. Specifically, his research currently addresses: 1) community capacity development and civic engagement through leadership training; 2) the political and social processes that enable or hinder community access to water and land resources, specifically (but not exclusively) in rural communities; 3) the class and race effects of access to basic services (water, sanitation, food, health care);  4) community capacity, community resilience and water systems management; 5) the impacts of greening in economically depressed small cities; 6) the community aspects of bioenergy development; 7) international social movements and community rights to basic services; and  8) facilitating cross-sectoral and interdisciplinary partnerships to address water and land resources management.

Peter Glendinning Department: Department of Art, Art History, and Design
Countries/Research: South Africa
Email: glendinn(at)

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Biography: In February 1999, Glendinning, as Board Member of the Photo Imaging Education Association, an international organization of photography faculty, was invited as a visiting lecturer at Technikon Pretoria (now Tshwane University), Bloemfontein Technikon (now Central University of Technology), and Port Elizabeth Technikon (now Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University). He lectured in each of photography programs on U.S. copyright law and related professional practices, held workshops for students and local professional photographers on his practice of studio lighting and creative portraiture with the Hosemaster Turbofilter lighting system, and created portraits of a broad cross section of South Africans. His travel was sponsored by a grant from the MSU African Studies Center and Calumet Photographic. Calumet donated a complete Turbofilter lighting system to Technikon Pretoria to enhance the education of its students and research by its faculty at a time when there was only one such system in South Africa. The portraits he created were exhibited in the following year at the South African Embassy in Washington, D.C. and at the consulates in New York and Chicago as well as in displays in Calumet Photographic retail outlets worldwide. Glendinning's visits resulted in further exchanges between those South African counterparts and MSU's Art, Art History, and Design faculty and students. In 2000, 2001, and 2002, students from MSU, Port Elizabeth Technikon, and Wingate University (North Carolina) created an exchange exhibit that toured all three campuses. In 2001, Prof. Cuz Jeppe of the Technikon Pretoria Fine Arts faculty spent two weeks at MSU offering lectures on contemporary artists in South Africa, including his own drawings, and leading drawing workshops. He and Glendinning also organized an exchange exhibit of artwork by faculty members that was hung in both institutions. In 2002 Technikon Pretoria artist Prof. Ian Redlinghuys was hosted as a visiting artist at MSU, lecturing on his own work and on David Goldblatt, and leading drawing workshops. In 2007, Prof. Waldemar Busshian of Tshwane University and Prof. Glenn Meyer of Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University, visited MSU and gave demonstrations in photography and lectures on their own artwork as well as that of contemporary South African photographers. In 2015, Glendinning received a national award as one of the 24 American Society of Media Photographers “Best of 2015”. Prof. Glendinning authored the series of 5 online courses, Photography Basics & Beyond, which has had enrollments by over 900 learners from 33 African nations since its launch in 2016. A 2019 Fulbright Scholar award will place him at Nelson Mandela University and Tshwane University of Technology in South Africa where he will teach graduate seminars. His research will bring him to each of the nine provinces to create a portrait of the South African people, through photographs and oral histories responsive to Nelson Mandela’s presidential inauguration statement that each of his compatriots is intimately attached to the soil of the country.

Margo Glew Department: Teacher Ed
Email: glewmarg(at)

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Biography: Margo Glew is coordinator of global initiatives and coordinator of the Global Educators Cohort Program, supporting efforts to enhance the teacher preparation program with global perspectives so that more teachers are prepared to educate students for success in a global society. Her academic interests include global education and second language acquisition and instruction. Her recent research involves working on a multi-national project to assess global-mindedness among undergraduate preservice teachers.