Faculty of Education, Social Sciences and Law

School of Politics and International Studies

Contact Details

Dr Akin Iwilade

Lecturer in African Studies

I joined POLIS in January 2018. Before coming to Leeds, I taught International Relations for five years at the Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife, Nigeria. I received an MSc in African Studies and a doctorate in International Development at Oxford and hold a BSc and MSc in International Relations from the Obafemi Awolowo University. I am currently a member of the Editorial Working Group of the Review of African Political Economy and Book Reviews Editor for the Leeds University Center of African Studies (LUCAS) Bulletin.

Research Interests

My research has focussed primarily on the politics of violent youth in Africa, especially in extractive contexts like the oil rich Niger Delta region of Nigeria. I have also researched the role of social movements in the forming and sustenance of political authority at the regional level in West Africa. Output from these research areas have appeared in leading journals including the Journal of Modern African Studies, Journal of Contemporary African Studies, Africa Spectrum, Journal of Youth Studies and Extractive Industries and Society.

I have two key current research interests. The first one looks at the shifting geographies of covert gang networks who appear to be exploring innovative migratory routes from west Africa to Europe. The goal here is to understand how new waves of migration subvert or transform statehood in a new age of globalisation. The second one focusses on exploring multiple citizenship questions that emerge out of the informal production and distribution of fuel in the Gulf of Guinea area and how it impacts on notions of statehood.


I am currently Module Leader for PIED 1806: Contemporary Africas: Politics, Society and the Environment. This is a discovery module which introduces undergraduates to various aspects of the histories, politics and societies of the continent of Africa.

PhD Supervision

I am happy to supervise doctoral research broadly focusing on any of these areas:

  • Youth Politics in Africa
  • The Politics of Oil
  • Regional security policy in West Africa
  • Governance, Democracy and Development in Nigeria

Media Contact Areas

I am happy to be contacted about:

  • The Niger Delta Region of Nigeria
  • ECOWAS’ regional integration
  • Global Oil Politics/Energy Security
  • Militarisation and Politics in the Gulf of Guinea Region

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