World Science Café

In the event series World Science Café, fled and threatened scientists offer insights into their research

Since the winter term of 2016/17, the ZAK, in cooperation with the International Scholars & Welcome Office (IScO) has been hosting a new series of events during which refugees report about their scientific work. In line with the title-giving café concept, a brief outline will be followed by a discussion about the state of academia in the speakers’ country of origin, in dialogue with a partner who is familiar with the situation in the respective country. What are the consequences a society faces when scientists are unable to continue research in their own country? How can threatened scientists be enabled to continue their work in Germany? How do they enrich and amplify the academic world and German society?

The Philipp Schwartz Initiative was launched by the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation together with the German Federal Foreign Office. It enables universities, universities of applied science, and independent research institutions to grant threatened researchers fellowships for research stays in Germany. The initiative has been made possible through generous support from the Federal Foreign Office, the Alfried Krupp von Bohlen und Halbach Foundation, the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, the Fritz Thyssen Foundation, the Gerda Henkel Foundation, the Klaus Tschira Foundation, the Robert Bosch Stiftung, the Stifterverband, and the Stiftung Mercator.


Programme in Winter Semester 2019/2020

Migration & Human Trafficking in the Global South: Cameroon to the Arab Gulf States
Lecture of Dr. Jonathan Ngeh (in English)
Thursday, 13 February 2020, 6 p.m.
Foyer of the Presidential Building (Adolf Würth Building, bldg. 11.30), Engelbert-Arnold-Straße 2, KIT Campus South

Dr. Jonathan Ngeh
Global South Studies Center, University of Cologne

Human trafficking is a devastating widespread tragedy that is closely intertwined with processes of globalisation and migration. For example, since 2015, there has been public outcry in the Cameroonian media about the unhappy fate of Cameroonian migrants living and working in the Arab Gulf countries, namely Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates. The debate was sparked by the testimonials of Cameroonian women who went to the Gulf to work as housemaids. Faced with unexpected labour exploitation, physical and sexual abuses, they were prompted to return to Cameroon. Their stories soon went viral and inspired reactions by the state and civil society actors, including journalists and non-governmental organizations. As we know from numerous human rights reports and current media reportage, the case of these Cameroonian women is not exceptional, but reflects the experiences of many low-income migrants living and working in the Arab Gulf. My goal in this study is to unpack the dynamics of human trafficking analytically through the conceptual lenses of multiscalar perspectives. This allows us to embed the analysis within specific transformations and shifting power dynamics that are taking place in the societies concerned and to examine the enabling and constraining effects of these developments on human trafficking. The analysis utilises data from ethnographic fieldwork undertaken in Dubai (in 2015) and in Cameroon (in 2016). 

Dr. Jonathan Ngeh received his Master of Art and Science in 2004 in Health and Society at the University of Linköping, Sweden. In 2011 he received his PhD in Sociology at the University of Umea. After his research fellowships at the University of Cologne, Germany (February to April 2015), he lectured at the University of Bamenda, Cameroon (November 2016 to July 2019). Since August 2019 he is guest researcher at the Global South Studies Center at the University of Cologne. Dr. Jonathan Ngeh’s research interests are directed towards the understanding of the dynamics of social inequalities in a globalized world with a particular focus on migrants. He has worked on South-North migration, focusing on the integration of Somali and Cameroonian migrants in Sweden. Since 2014 Dr. Jonathan Ngeh is interesetd in South-South migration, inspired by his participation in the workshop „Migration within and to the Global South“ organized by the Global South Studies Center at the University of Cologne.