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[PANEL] 1213 WORKSHOP PANEL FOR JUNIOR SCHOLARS ON HORN OF AFRICA STUDIES
Katrin BROMBER, Leibniz-Centre for Modern Oriental Studies (Berlin), Germany
MOGES Gebreegziabher Woldu; FIKADU Kassa; TIRSIT Sahledegle
During their phase of academic qualification junior scholars usually do not have sufficient opportunities to build up networks outside their affiliated institution and hardly get access to academic congresses to present their research results and expertise. Especially during the phase of work in progress external feedback and support on the project from peers and professionals as well as getting connected to other researchers is highly valuable. Thus, the German-based Horn of Africa Research Association (WAKHVA) offers an organized workshop panel for PhD students with a regional focus on the Horn of Africa.
As part of the 20th International Conference of Ethiopian Studies, junior scholars have the opportunity to present their academic theses (Master thesis, PhD) in progress in English. Since the general idea of the workshop is not to present final results, junior scholars are explicitly invited to contribute their projects in an early stage or conception or implementation in the field of social sciences and humanities.
A HOLISTIC ETHNOGRAPHIC STUDY OF IROB PEOPLE IN NORTH EASTERN ETHIOPIA: EMPHASIS ON CONTINUITY AND TRANSFORMATIONS [Abstract ID: 1213-02]
The Irob people comprise 0.03 per cent of the Ethiopian population and come from the Tigray region of Ethiopia. The total Irob population is 33,372, according to the Central Statistics Agency (CSA, 1994; 2007) of Ethiopia. The census shows 5,363 households with an average of 4.75 people to a single household, within 5,165 housing units. Between the population and housing census is of 1994 and 2007, the Irob population increased by 43.29%. According to Tesfay (2006), there have been no comprehensive studies conducted in Irob focusing on the socio-cultural and historical background of the people, including religion and language. Rapid changes have been seen in population growth and religion. In the 1994 census the majority of the inhabitants were Catholic, followed by Orthodox and and finally Muslims. In 2007, the majority were Orthodox, while the numbers of Catholics and Muslims have both fallen. The general objective of the study is to explore and describe the socio-cultural dynamics of the Irob people, focusing on socio-cultural continuity and transformations. This paper concentrates mainly on organization, landownership, local authority, income and livelihood, education, reproduction and health facilities. The design of the research uses an exploratory sequential mixed approach. The qualitative data are collected through qualitative instruments and then through questionnaires, after intensive qualitative data collection. Secondary data sources will be used for triangulation. To ensure data reliability Denzin’s (1970) data validity assurance elements – data, investigator, theoretical, and methodological triangulation – are used.
JESUIT ARCHITECTURAL HERITAGES IN WEST GOJJAM, ETHIOPIA. [Abstract ID: 1213-03]
West Gojjam is home to several ancient monuments that preceed the Ecclesiastical and secular Gondarine periods. This architectural heritage has never previously been studied in depth nor documented and monuments have not been well conserved. Today many of the monuments are in ruins, deteriorating fast and at a rate that could mean they will be lost before their significance is assessed and documented. The purpose of this qualitative study is to provide a record, systematic description and analysis of the historical and cultural monuments and artefacts in their local context. Eight sites, which include the structural remains of pre-Gondarine residences, a church, and a bridge, were studied. The information came from research, oral tradition, observations and recording of the physical fabric . The analysis provides understanding of site selection and distribution, architectural features, construction materials, site use and structural alterations. These monuments have aesthetic, historical, scientific, communal and economic value, but have deteriorated severely due to human and natural causes. Therefore, appropriate conservation measures backed by further scientific studies are necessary to protect the above-mentioned heritage value.
REFUGEES AS ECONOMIC RIVALRY GROUPS TO THE HOST: SUDANESE REFUGEES IN WESTERN ETHIOPIA [Abstract ID: 1213-01]
This paper studies the nature of the relationship between refugees in Western Ethiopia and their host communities. Currently, Ethiopia is the fifth largest host of refugees in the world and the biggest in Africa. Most of the refugees are from war-torn Horn of Africa countries. It has received and continues to receive a large number of refugees from neighbouring countries, mainly Somalia, South Sudan, Sudan and Eritrea, countries that have been grappling with conflicts for a long time. Currently, the South Sudanese make up the largest number of refugees in Ethiopia. Because of geographical proximity to South Sudan, the two regions in Western Ethiopia that host the largest number of refugees are Benishangul-Gumuz and Gambella. The focus of this study is particularly Benishangul-Gumuz, which has been the main destination for South Sudanese and Sudanese refugees since 2011. Due to historical and cultural ties between the hosts and the guests in this region, there are peaceful relations between the two groups, manifested through intermarriage and other friendly contacts. However, there are also economic rivalries such as in labour markets, where refugees with no work permit in Ethiopia try to engage informally in work to support their families when there are insufficient food supplies in the camps. This paper documents the peaceful relations and economic rivalries between the hosts and the guests. It also examines the impact of both forms of relations on the host communities and vice versa. The research used a qualitative approach to data collection and analyses.