The department is a lively community that is recognised internationally as one of the top centres for research and teaching in development studies.
Myfanwy James is a Departmental Lecturer in Development Studies. Her research interests lie in the ethnographic study of power, security and social identity in aid intervention during violent conflict. She focuses on the political dimensions of humanitarian aid in the eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo.
Myfanwy’s doctoral thesis examined how humanitarians negotiate access with armed groups to work in areas of conflict in North Kivu, eastern DRC. This research explores how people navigate through turbulent political environments in contexts of protracted ‘crisis.’ More recently, Myfanwy has focused on the contested legitimacy of foreign-led clinical research in Africa. From 2020-2021, she was a Research Fellow at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, where she conducted ethnographic research on the politics surrounding an Ebola vaccine trial in Goma, eastern DRC, as well as research into the impact of COVID-19 on healthcare and biomedical interventions in the region. Her current research includes a collaborative oral history project drawing on testimonies from locally hired humanitarians who worked in the 10th Ebola outbreak in DRC.
Myfanwy holds a DPhil in International Development from the University of Oxford, and an MSc from the London School of Economics and Political Science.