Dr Portia Roelofs
Lecturer in Politics
Dr Roelofs has degrees from Oxford, SOAS and LSE. She has held post-doctoral fellowships at the LSE and St Anne’s College, Oxford. She has been a visiting researcher at the Universities of Maiduguri and Ibadan, Nigeria. She is co-convenor of the Political Studies Association special group on development politics and sits on the Council of the African Studies Association UK. She is a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy.
Visit my personal website here.
Franklin Wilkins Building (Waterloo Campus) FWB G.75
Tuesday: 14.00 - 15.00 (online)
Thursday: 14.00 - 15.00 (in-person)
Booking required. Please e-mail Dr Roelofs for the sign-up sheet. Office hours by appointment only during reading week.
Dr Roelofs’ research lies at the intersection of development studies, African politics and political theory. Her work brings a critical approach to questions of governance, democracy and accountability, and problematises the political-economies that shape knowledge production in these fields.
Dr Roelofs’ forthcoming book Good governance in Nigeria: Rethinking accountability and transparency in the twenty-first century draws on in-depth qualitative fieldwork in southwest Nigeria to propose new, socially-embedded conceptions of accountability and transparency. She has convened workshops and panels on ideas, ideology and values in African politics.
Dr Roelofs’ ongoing research explores new frontiers of privatisation, looking how new configurations of public and private actors, and states and markets, are shaping governance whether in the UK, Nigeria or beyond. This research focuses on two themes: the role of management consultants in government and public-private partnerships (PPPs).
She also has interests in the politics of public sector reform, parties and ideology, elite social networks, the politics of knowledge production, and the possibilities for decolonising the study of politics and development.
2022/23 academic year
6SSPP392 Political Effects of Climate Change
6SSPP358 Politics of Trade
6SSPP375 Race and Racism in Political Theory
Dr Roelofs is not generally accepting PhD proposals at this time. In exceptional cases proposals will be considered if they relate very closely to Dr Roelofs' ongoing work on the politics of goods governance in Nigeria or the political role of management consultants in government.
Good governance in Nigeria: Rethinking accountability and transparency in the twenty-first century (Cambridge University Press, 2023)
Urban renewal in Ibadan, Nigeria: World class but essentially Yoruba. African Affairs, 2021 (open access) 120 (480)
The death of political possibility? Reading State and Society in Nigeria 40 years on. Review of African Political Economy, 2022.
Contesting localisation in interfaith peacebuilding in Northern Nigeria. Oxford Development Studies, 2020. (Open access via this link.)
Making pandemic politics transparent: lessons from Nigeria, Renewal: A Journal of Social Democracy (2020) Vol 28 (3).
Flying in the univer-topia: white people on planes, #RhodesMustFall and climate emergency, Journal of African Cultural Studies, 2019.
Beyond programmatic versus patrimonial politics: Contested conceptions of legitimate distribution in Nigeria. Journal of Modern African Studies, 2019, 57 (3).
Transparency and mistrust: Who or what should be made transparent? Governance, 2019, 32 (3)