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Eloise Bertrand

Dr

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Summary

I am a comparativist scholar working on African politics. I am currently a research fellow at the University of Portsmouth. Before that, I was an early career fellow at the University of Warwick, where I completed myPhD in 2020. My research interests include political parties, institutions, and elite politics in hybrid regimes, with a particular focus on Burkina Faso and Uganda.

Research Interests

My research is in the field of comparative politics, and focuses on political parties, institutions, governance, and security in sub-Saharan Africa. I have expertise on Burkina Faso and the Sahel region, as well as Uganda.

My doctoral research looked at the role of opposition parties in hybrid regimes, with a focus on Burkina Faso and Uganda. An article drawing from this research and focusing on opposition party functions in these settings is currently under press at African Affairs, and two other papers are currently under work. 

My postdoctoral work has looked at political mobilisation in the same countries. In Uganda, I conducted collaborative research on the use of WhatsApp by parliamentary candidates during the 2021 election campaign, with support from the Westminster Foundation for Democracy (WFD). In Burkina Faso, I worked in partnership with Dr Abdoul Karim Saidou to analyse how presidential candidates mobilised security issues during their campaign for the November 2020 election. I also authored a special report on popular mobilisation and negotiations during the 2014 insurrection and subsequent transition in Burkina Faso for the United States Institute of Peace (USIP). 

I am currently designing a new research idea about the interplay between democratisation, counterinsurgency, and elite politics in the West African Sahel.

Biography

I am currently a research fellow at the School of Area Studies, History, Politics, and Literature of the University of Portsmouth. Previously, I was an early career fellow in the department of Politics and International Studies of the University of Warwick, where I defended my PhD in June 2020. 

In 2019, I co-authored A Dictionary of African Politics (OUP) with Prof. Nic Cheeseman and Dr Sa’eed Husaini. An article drawing from my PhD research on opposition parties in hybrid regimes is forthcoming at African Affairs, and I am currently working on several co-authored publications on political mobilisation in Burkina Faso and Uganda. 

I regularly work with policymakers and practitioners such as the Westminster Foundation for Democracy (WFD) and the United States Institute of Peace (USIP) to conduct high-impact research and analysis on elections, mobilisations, and political dynamics in Africa. I have worked with non-governmental organisations on needs assessments, evaluations, and project design. I have teaching and supervision experience at both undergraduate and MA levels, and strive to foster an inclusive, ethical, and community-oriented academia.

My pronouns are she/her. You can hear how my name is pronounced here.

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