Cultural Rights and Kenya's New Constitution

Lead Research Organisation: Open University
Department Name: Faculty of Arts and Social Sci (FASS)

Abstract

Cultural Rights and Kenya's New Constitution

This collaborative and interdisciplinary research project is the first to document and analyse the impact of cultural rights provisions in Kenya's relatively new (2010) constitution on Kenyan society and its heritage sector. The research team, which includes British, Kenyan, Canadian and South African scholars, aims to produce analysis, policy recommendations and empirical data that will be of use locally and internationally.

The constitution, approved in a national referendum in August 2010, enshrines a number of rights to culture (the constitution does not define the word) which Kenyans had not previously enjoyed. It also allowed for the devolution of government to 47 new counties, many of which are investing in cultural activities, often linked to tourism and marketing. Some county governments are also drafting their own cultural legislation. We have, since constitutional implementation began, witnessed a flourishing of engagement with culture across the nation, at both national and county level and by a wide variety of stakeholders - state and non-state.

The PI originally envisaged when writing the bid that citizens would use the constitution to bring claims for cultural rights, such as the return of 'ancestral land' or special protection for indigenous groups, but with a few exceptions that has not happened. Reasons include the fact that most communities lack funding to pay lawyers' fees. Also, recourse to the courts is not the only way of giving life to constitutional rights provisions. Hence the research focus has broadened to an exploration - via case and desk studies - of the different ways in which Kenyans are exercising their cultural rights, or engaging with 'culture'.

While positive in some respects, since culture can be a tool for development and peace building, we foresaw dangers that claims to cultural rights could lead to the further concretisation of 'tribe' and essentialised ethnic identity, the promotion and reification of sub-national identities, a clash between human rights and cultural rights (especially where women's and children's rights are concerned), a retreat into deeper ethnic enclaves and the hardening of ethnicised territorial boundaries. Any of these may exacerbate social tensions and sabotage peace and unification efforts. Yet the aim of the constitution was the exact opposite: to unite the nation. This fundamental contradiction, and the potential pitfalls, do not appear to have been recognised by the state and other key players, before constitutional implementation began. The project is examining these processes and the public debates and discourses around them, mapping impact as constitutional provisions are both implemented and interpreted. It will produce timely information for policy makers, heritage managers, heritage stakeholders (who include citizens and civil society groups), donors, NGOs, law implementers and bodies delivering civic education. This will have practical uses at a crucial time for Kenya, as constitutional change transforms the country.

Planned Impact

IMPACT SUMMARY (Cultural Rights and Kenya's New Constitution)
Who will benefit?
ACADEMIA: UK/Kenya/international. Disciplines and subjects include history, African studies, cultural studies, social anthropology, human rights, human rights law, constitutional law, political science.
PUBLIC SECTOR includes: policy makers (in Kenya); constitutional and other lawyers; the judiciary; Judiciary Training Institute; the National Cohesion and Integration Commission; state heritage managers including the Director of Culture; National Museums of Kenya; relevant national ministries; county governments; civil society heritage stakeholders (individual citizens, special interest groups); general public; media; the Anti-FGM Board of Kenya. NB: Some organizations listed as potential beneficiaries in the original bid have now become defunct since their term of office ended, e.g. the Transition Authority, the Commission for the Implementation of the Constitution.
THIRD SECTOR: The Federation of Women Lawyers (FIDA); human rights groups KHRC and KNCHR; NGOs (both local and international [INGOs] working in Kenya); The Open Society Initiative for Eastern Africa; The Katiba Institute (an NGO supporting constitutional implementation); Kituo cha Katiba, a centre for regional constitutional development, Kampala.
OTHER: UK and French research institutes BIEA and IFRA (Nairobi based); UNESCO regional office; other UN bodies, e.g. UNFPA, UNICEF; the Foreign and Commonwealth Office; DfID; the Institute for Conflict Research, Belfast; Royal African Society; The Global Initiative for Economic, Social and Cultural Rights. Other UNESCO offices may be able to use our findings in comparative work.
How?
The research has the potential to inform and influence policy and practice by providing entirely new data and insights. Beneficiaries were or will be reached via the events we organized, media publicity, briefing reports that include policy recommendations, websites (ours and others'). We will make full use of our contacts' networks, as we have in previous successful projects. Culture, as UNESCO recognises, plays a vital role in the development and health of nations, especially in post-conflict states where ethnicity and cultural 'tradition' can be manipulated for political ends. Timely, informed analysis of the implications and impacts of cultural heritage policies and constitutional rights can help Kenyans to achieve development, social cohesion and peace. By documenting, analysing and disseminating information on the potential benefits and risks of exercising cultural rights we will:
- assist policy makers, law implementers and other players to understand the complexities of, and avoid the pitfalls that surround, cultural heritage policy and law;
- facilitate dialogue and knowledge exchange between state and non-state cultural heritage sectors at events in Nairobi (a conference, two workshops) and a Belfast workshop, enabling divisive issues to be discussed and tensions reduced (a proven impact of the PI's previous research);
- encourage citizens to claim rights in ways that do not impinge upon others' rights. We will do this by providing information and bringing people together in these inter-ethnic cross-sectoral forums;
- support and add value to civic education, constitutional monitoring and implementation;
- raise public awareness of issues, such as the relationship between cultural heritage and peace, via media, blogs, other outputs, generating wider informed debate, e.g. on the need to balance human and cultural rights.
- produce data, analysis and policy recommendations that will inform national and international cultural heritage policy and scholarship.

Publications

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Description We found that what may be called the 'katiba moment' (katiba is Kiswahili for constitution) has created new visions of an imagined future for Kenya, and enabled citizens to find ways of imagining what the future would and could be like. Notions of culture are fundamental to that vision, partly because of the emphasis in the 2010 constitution's Preamble on culture, which states that Kenyans can be 'proud of [their] ethnic, cultural and religious diversity'. Further to this, although cultural heritage tends to be regarded as something to do with the past, we found that the many ways in which heritage (and culture) are being used, engaged with, negotiated and re-constructed are more to do with futures than pasts. For example, pastoralists in northern Kenya are using notions of culture to reposition themselves in relation to large-scale development projects and resource extraction on their lands. In so doing they seek to reap benefits from these developments, strengthen traditional authorities and resurrect/secure recognition of ancient grazing regimes. In another part of the country, poor farmers and fisher-folk in Siaya County, western Kenya, have successfully used notions of culture (and invoked constitutional cultural rights provisions) to win a land claim case brought against a foreign-owned commercial farm which has encroached upon their territory. A third example is Alternative Rites of Passage, which are touted by NGOs as alternative initiation rituals for girls refusing FGM (female genital mutilation). They constitute a new form of hybridised ritual and cultural performance, 'invented traditions' that intermix old and new notions of culture in an attempt to deal with contemporary development and human rights' challenges. ARP offers potent visions of what the future could hold for girls, women, and society as a whole.
Linked to some of these examples, we found emerging evidence that 'culture' and 'community' are becoming ways of organising various forms of political action or activism, some of them (making extensive use of the internet) linked to transnational movements allied to environmentalism, intellectual property, indigenous and minority activism, and/or action on cultural heritage rights. (We may elaborate on this in a later submission round.)
Furthermore, we found that culture is often used to 'stand for' something else in contemporary Kenya, e.g. it is being used to make 'tribalism' respectable, which was very evident for example in the run-up to the 2017 election campaigns in which ethnicised rhetoric and performance were semi-disguised as 'cultural', such as through the co-option of ethnic elders and Councils of Elders in politicians' campaigns at both county and national level.
Culture as performance has become ubiquitous since 2010, and is found in some surprising places such as Alternative Rites of Passage (ARPs, mentioned above), beauty pageants, less surprisingly at cultural festivals which are flourishing across Kenya. These festivals largely aim to 'showcase' the culture of different ethnic groups, as well as create new income streams for county governments. Culture is being put to work very hard at county level, for example in the branding of the 47 counties, and the marketing of county resources for tourism and investment purposes. Devolution to counties (which began in 2013) is offering new opportunities to 'scale up' culture, for county governments and citizens who may have previously felt disengaged from national culture.
Now that culture is officially part of Kenya's constitutional discourse, it has new purchase power in courts of law (this harks back to the land claims case mentioned above). Culture has become a way of objectifying land claims, following an historical pattern in which law and situationally defined culture frames and give land multiple layers of reference and legal status. Culture is also being invoked in efforts by the judiciary to make alternative dispute resolution mechanisms (involving traditional authorities, i.e. elders) more compatible with statutory law. [I AM UNABLE TO INSERT A LINE SPACE HERE. NB: THE REST OF THIS SUB-SECTION ANSWERS OTHER Qs IN THE GUIDANCE THAT ARE NOT GIVEN ON THE SYSTEM, i.e. Qs IN THE GUIDANCE DOCUMENT DO NOT MATCH ALL Qs POSED HERE AND SHOULD BE MADE CONSISTENT PLEASE. I HAVE CHOSEN IN PART TO FOLLOW THE GUIDANCE]

What were the most significant achievements from the grant?
1. Monitoring, documentation and analysis of the processes through which Kenyans are engaging with culture and cultural rights at national and county level, during a crucial period in Kenya's history - since the passing of the 2010 constitution and the roll-out of devolved governance since 2013. Such engagement has increased enormously since 2010, as the PI anticipated in her original bid. No other scholars, so far as we are aware, have tracked and analysed these developments, least of all from an interdisciplinary perspective (combining history, anthropology, law, human rights, heritage studies, and development studies).
2. Researching and writing a briefing report on the 'Uses and Management of Culture by Kenya County Governments' (2017). Again, this study and the resulting report, by Gordon Omenya and Mark Lamont, is the first of its kind, and we hope it may influence policy and practice in the 47 devolved counties.
3. Engagement with cultural stakeholders of many kinds from different sectors of Kenyan society, at events we convened in Nairobi (and also through our blogs and use of social media) that constituted, in their totality, a continuing 'conversation' and knowledge exchange on cultural rights issues among scholars and non-scholars. The sectors represented included human rights, legal profession/the judiciary, NGOs/CBOs/civil society activism, heritage, the arts, writing/publishing, development, media, and academia. Participants in our events rarely if ever have the opportunity to meet and interact as equals with representatives of other sectors at events of this kind, and many reported attitude change, acquisition of information and knowledge they plan to use in their work and studies, fresh inspiration, and so on. Participants included some of our field assistants, who appreciated the opportunity to feel more included in the project as a whole, and to contribute to the larger discussion.
4. All our case studies have broken new ground in different ways (see the list of individual case study findings below). For example, Lamont's study on male gender violence shone a light on the violence (often trivialized) that is an intrinsic part of forced adult male circumcision in Africa, and the links between initiation ritual, citizenship, crises in masculinity, and local/global campaigns that promote voluntary male circumcision on health grounds. This study was complemented by PI Hughes's study of FGM and Alternative Rites of Passage (ARP), the latter a highly under-researched subject. This latter study examined the Christian faith aspects of ARP, and flagged up its significance as a new kind of ritualised cultural performance, which no other scholars have previously done. Akoth's case study of a land claim in western Kenya demonstrated how the new constitution has provided a 'moment of historical transformation', not just of the meaning of culture but also the meaning of land as culture, and citizens' relationship with and sense of 'belonging' to land. [NB I cant insert a line space here, and at other points in this section]
To what extent were the grant objectives met? (NB I have chosen to expand the answer beyond the narrow options given (no/yes/partially/too early to say). If this detail is not required, please delete.)
The main objectives listed in the bid were as follows, with actuals given under each item:

1. Produce tangible outcomes including a co-edited book, 5 journal articles, briefing reports for beneficiaries, desk study reports, papers at 2 international conference panels, edited video of a conference in Nairobi, an interactive website with blogs, Facebook pages, contributions to broadcast and print media (UK/Kenyan/international) and archived data (textual and visual) including edited interviews.
ACTUALS: It was decided to produce a journal Special Issue rather than a book, largely because this is more useful for early career scholars (we had four on the team) and the REF. Including the Special Issue (which also includes contributions from scholars outside the project, who worked closely with us) we will have exceeded 5 journal articles (7 thus far, with more to follow). In addition, we have produced 2 book chapters (one singly authored by Hughes, the other jointly by Hughes, Akoth and Nyamweru, a former member of our project Advisory Board). One briefing report was produced (the counties study mentioned above), and 2 desk study reports (one for internal use only, not for publication). It was decided, for budgetary and practical reasons, not to video the final conference. No contributions were made to broadcast media (we tried, hiring a Kenyan media specialist to handle media relations for the final conference in Nairobi, but unfortunately this did not lead to outputs). Social media engagement also included heavy use of Twitter. All other outputs successfully produced. Data has largely been archived on ReShare (currently awaiting its formal acceptance). Some of the more sensitive data (including Hughes's on FGM, and a sub-set of Cormack's data) will be held securely at the Open University at the request of the university's Human Research Ethics Committee (HREC).

2. Produce policy recommendations for key stakeholders such as relevant Kenyan Ministries, UNESCO's regional office and the National Cohesion and Integration Commission (all Nairobi). These will take the form of written briefings.
ACTUALS: The counties briefing report (see above) includes policy recommendations. Copies have been sent to UNESCO (Nairobi office), cultural officials in all 47 county governments, Paddy Onyango (National Convenor of the Devolution Working Group), The Katiba Institute, NGOs and other stakeholders (more will be sent out in 2018). The PI has sent policy recommendations on Alternative Rites of Passage (part of efforts to eradicate FGM) to the NGO World Vision, which facilitated her field research access, and to another NGO, 28toomany, which works to end FGM worldwide. She is currently exploring with 28toomany the potential for future research collaboration, involving the University of Leicester as well as Kenyan and other scholars. She is also continuing to discuss the potential uses of the policy recommendations with World Vision UK and World Vision Kenya, but has in the meantime sent the recommendations to Kenya's Anti-FGM Board, which was established by the Kenya Government. She hopes these will be considered for inclusion in guidance on ARP which the Board plans to issue to NGOs in March 2018. For various reasons we were unable to produce more briefing reports, largely because of time and budgetary constraints, the small size of the team, and major staffing changes (the loss of the original Research Associate towards the end of the second year). This person had planned to produce a briefing report with the Africa Research Institute, London, for their 'Counterpoints' series. Unfortunately this was not something anyone else (e.g. her successor) could write, since it would have drawn on her research data on northern Kenya.

3. Host a conference and two workshops in Nairobi to facilitate dialogue on the implications of claiming cultural rights between different types of stakeholders, including key members of our case study communities. In this way, contribute to civic education.
ACTUALS: All accomplished successfully. Furthermore, we combined our final conference with a free public lecture the night before at Nairobi National Museum, given by a key contact (not a member of the team, we deliberately chose an independent Kenyan cultural commentator and scholar), followed by a musical performance. This event was very well attended, attracting three times as many people as we expected. Feedback was excellent.

5. Host a colloquium in the UK for UK-based policy makers and other types of beneficiary, plus select scholars and researchers, where we will present work in progress.
ACTUALS: Done. In addition, we convened a second UK engagement event at Queen's University, Belfast, in October 2016.

Individual Case Study Findings
Mark Lamont & Gordon Omenya - County Governments and the Uses of Culture
1. Devolution of governance means significant changes in the ways 'culture' speaks to the liminal or 'grey' boundaries between 'human rights' and 'community rights';
2. Rights will be a new battleground in global geopolitics as they are played out in Africa (as proxy wars were to the Cold War);
3. With the creation of county governments in Kenya, alongside massive investment in building infrastructure and extractive resource management, non-governmental organizations (NGOs) and community-based organisations (CBOs) find themselves in critical roles as facilitators and trainers in the transformation of governance under devolution (thereby asking further questions about the futures of neoliberal policy and governance in Africa);
4. There is an urgent need for anthropology and other related disciplines to re-examine their theoretical ambivalences towards the 'culture' concept in light of its instrumentalisation in the real world.

Harriet Deacon - A Comparative Review of Cultural Rights Provisions in the Kenyan Constitution

1. Compared to other constitutions globally, the Constitution of Kenya (CoK) provides very broad rights protection, including protection for cultural rights;
2. The CoK represents 'culture' in different ways, and sets up different kinds of rights and responsibilities, at the national, group and individual level;
3. The CoK, like the South African Constitution, represents culture (in the singular) at the national level in a 'neutral' way as 'civilisation', democratic values, and national pride; this has been criticised for lacking a Kenyan 'cultural fingerprint';
4. The CoK recognises the rights of culturally-defined groups to practise their cultures (plural), so long as these are consistent with human rights provisions. It seeks to protect the interests of cultural minorities and indigenous groups within the devolved county system;
5. Like many of the constitutions influenced by civil law traditions, the CoK protects 'freedom of artistic creativity' as well as freedom of expression and cultural association in accordance with the Bill of Rights.

Mark Lamont - Forced Male Circumcision and Ritual Violence in Kenya
1. Male circumcision is emphatically denied as a form of (ritual) violence, although 'forced male circumcision' is a human rights abuse and a criminal act;
2. The 'cut' in both male and female cases is only a highlight of the ritual process, but most commentators ignore this fact, focusing instead on the spectacle generated by controversy;
3. Forced male circumcision has a quasi-legal status, as vigilante discipline, in the view of its perpetrators and, often, its victims (fostering the kind of court silences over this particular form of violence in Kenya);
4. The continuation of male-upon-male (sexualised) violence is furthered by a generalized campaign among leading public health organizations to condone and support voluntary, safe circumcision as a prophylaxis against HIV-infection.

Lotte Hughes - FGM/C and Alternative Rites of Passage (ARP)
1. FGM/FGC is usually described as a 'cultural' practice, but in fact it may have less to do with 'culture' than, say, social reproduction and customary norms. By couching it in different (non-cultural) terms, this could lessen resistance to change by communities which resent their practices being represented as 'barbaric culture';
2. The local and globalised 'moral panic' around FGM/C tends to focus attention exclusively on the physical 'cut', to the exclusion of other important elements of girls' initiation and graduation to womanhood;
3. ARP, which its proponents tout as an alternative to FGM/C but without 'the cut', may be understood and analysed primarily as cultural performance and hybridised ritual. This invented tradition is an example of the new ways in which 'culture' is being used and instrumentalised in Kenya today, to make quick connections between 'the modern' and 'the past', for present purposes;
4. Christian faith leaders, together with Christian symbolism and practice, are a central feature of ARP, and should also be understood as cultural actors and signifiers - a fact ignored by most commentators and NGOs/donors.

Steve Ouma Akoth- Yala Swamp case study, Siaya County

1. Enquiry into how the CoK 2010 is used to claim cultural rights requires multifaceted research methods that examine both places (like Yala, Kisumu and Nairobi) and spaces such as the World Trade Organization;
2. The formulation and provision of cultural rights in the constitution has enabled the use of culture to define and make matters of boundary and jurisdiction more acceptable, thus enhancing the visibility of various material claims such as land rights in rural Kenya;
3. The legal framing of rights to property (such as land) has been made more elastic and become framed in the mode of 'living customary law' and heritage under the aegis of the constitution;
4. The judicial practice of representational suit has been mobilized in defining community not only as a legal entity but much more as a cultural group ('connected knowing and narration'), as seen in the case of Yimbo-Yala Swamp Farmers' Society.

Zoe Cormack - Northern Kenya infrastructure and cultural rights case study
1. The defence of 'culture' has been taken up as a way of negotiating the impact of infrastructure projects and changing uses of land in northern Kenya;
2. International NGOs and rights groups are involved in re-articulating the meaning of culture or heritage, but they are also working closely with national and local organisations who aim to change perceptions about pastoralism and its value;
3. Culture and heritage are being drawn into the politics of development. Ideas about culture both shape and are shaped by anticipated transformations;
4. Cultural rights claims can compete. The construction of shared heritage can have unifying effects, but it can also be divisive, especially in places where infrastructure/industry is changing the value of land.
Exploitation Route 1. We hope that Kenyan county governments and other cultural stakeholders will act upon the findings and recommendations in our briefing report on counties and culture. It has the potential to help shape future county policy and practice, and at the very least to be used as a handbook and basis for discussion among stakeholders and policy makers at both county and national level.
2. When the UN Special Rapporteur in the field of cultural rights (Karima Bennoune, a key contact of the PI's) visits Kenya at a future date to survey the cultural rights situation there, including the implementation of constitutional provisions, we hope that our findings will inform her enquiries. We have offered to introduce her to key cultural players in Kenya, and to brief her (though this will be more difficult now that the project has ended and all team members have left the OU). There is, however, potential - via Prof. Bennoune - to influence high-level policy making in Kenya and within the UN. She has already favourably mentioned and extensively quoted the PI in her first report (February 2016) to the Human Rights Council of the UN General Assembly, after her appointment as Special Rapporteur in November 2015. In this report, Prof. Bennoune said she planned to incorporate Hughes's observations in her future work. (This will be detailed in the Impact Narrative.)
3. [We will add a few lines on male gender violence and VMMC, Voluntary Medical Male Circumcision - it is premature to do so now].
4. The PI's engagement with the NGOs World Vision and 28toomany (see above) has potential for future collaborative research and practical action to improve Alternative Rites of Passage (ARP), part of global efforts by development agencies and donors to end FGM. It is too early to give details; discussions and plans are ongoing - but for more information see Impact Narrative.
5. UNESCO has used consultant Deacon's desk study report (a comparison between constitutional cultural rights provisions in the Kenyan and other constitutions) in training materials, and there is potential for more uptake since Deacon is a UNESCO consultant/trainer.
6. The Finnish government and other high-level players including extractive industrial companies have expressed interest, to former Research Assoc. Cormack, in using her research on the Lake Turkana Wind Farm project, but it is too early to say how these findings might be taken forward.
7. The Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) has also expressed interest in discussing our findings with the PI, but this meeting has not taken place yet. We hope that the FCO is able to use them in some way, to inform its work on and in Kenya. [i AM UNABLE TO INSERT LINE SPACE HERE]
INDIVIDUAL CASE STUDY FINDINGS (if these are required, if not please delete. Potential 'use to others' is also touched on here.)
1. County Governments and the Uses of Culture (Case/Desk Study by Mark Lamont and Gordon Omenya)
- Devolution of governance means significant changes in the ways 'culture' speaks to the liminal or grey boundaries between 'human rights' and 'community rights';
- Rights will be a new battleground in global geopolitics as they are played out in Africa (as proxy wars were to the Cold War);
- There is an urgent need for anthropology and other related disciplines to re-examine their theoretical ambivalences towards the 'culture' concept in light of its instrumentalisation in the real world;
- With the creation of devolved county governments in Kenya, alongside massive investments in infrastructure and extractive resource industries, NGOs and community-based organisations (CBOs) find themselves in critical roles as facilitators and trainers in the transformation of governance under devolution, which gives rise to further questions about the future of neoliberal policy and governance in Africa; [I AM UNABLE TO INSERT A LINE SPACE HERE]
2. Northern Kenya infrastructure and cultural rights (Case Study, Zoe Cormack)
- The defence of 'culture' has been taken up as a way of negotiating the impact of infrastructure projects and changing uses of land in Northern Kenya;
- International NGOs and rights groups are involved in re-articulating the meaning of culture or heritage, but they are also working closely with national and local organisations which aim to change perceptions about pastoralism and its value;
- Culture and heritage are being drawn into the politics of development. Ideas about culture both shape and are shaped by anticipated transformations such as the LAPSSET project (Lamu Port and Lamu-Southern Sudan-Ethiopia Transport Corridor);
- Cultural rights claims can compete. The construction of shared heritage can have unifying effects, but it can also be divisive, especially in places where infrastructure/industry is changing the value of land.

3. FGM and Alternative Rites of Passage (Case Study, Lotte Hughes)
- FGM (female genital mutilation, also sometimes referred to as FGC or female genital cutting) is usually described as a 'cultural' practice', but in fact it may have less to do with 'culture' than social reproduction and customary norms;
- The local and globalised 'moral panic' around FGM tends to focus attention exclusively on the physical 'cut', to the exclusion of other important elements of girls' initiation and graduation to womanhood which have received far less attention from NGOs, donors and other players. Wider aspects of initiation should be taken into account, and more attention paid to its importance and symbolism, if efforts to end FGM are to succeed;
- Alternative Rites of Passage (ARP), touted by its NGO proponents as an alternative to FGM but without 'the cut', may be understood and analysed primarily as cultural performance, invented tradition and an experiment in social engineering. It is an example of the new ways in which 'culture' is being used and instrumentalised in Kenya today, in this case by local and international development players, to make quick-fix connections between 'the modern' and 'the past', for present-day 'development' purposes;
- Christian faith leaders, together with Christian symbolism and practices, are a central feature of ARP in Kenya. (I did not study Muslim areas, but similar may apply there.) Faith leaders should also be recognised as cultural actors in ARP - a fact ignored by most commentators, NGOs and donors, and the few scholars who have researched and published on ARP;
- The social norms theories developed by American political scientist Gerry Mackie in his work on tackling 'harmful cultural practices', and adopted uncritically by Unicef, the World Bank, NGOs and other development players in efforts to end FGM, should be read much more critically than they have been to date. NGOs/donors have seized upon this theory and applied it to anti-FGM initiatives, in the absence of any other plausible social scientific theory which can be used to frame and justify such development interventions. There is an urgent need to seek out and test other theories of behaviour change. The 'rapid mass abandonment' that this theoretical approach promises has clearly not manifested, certainly in Kenya, after nearly two decades of advocacy and law-making. [LINE BREAK REQUIRED, I CANT INSERT ONE]
4. Forced Male Circumcision and Ritual Violence in Kenya (Case Study, Mark Lamont)
- Male circumcision is emphatically denied as a form of (ritual) violence, although forced male circumcision is a human rights abuse and a criminal act;
- The 'cut' in both male and female cases is only a highlight of the ritual process, but most commentators ignore this fact, focusing instead on the spectacle generated by controversy;
- Forced male circumcision has a quasi-legal status, as vigilante discipline, in the view of its perpetrators and, often, its victims (fostering the kind of court silences over this particular form of violence in Kenya);
- The continuation of male-upon-male (sexualised) violence is furthered by a generalised campaign among leading public health organisations to condone and support voluntary, safe circumcision as a prophylaxis against HIV-infection. [NOT POSSIBLE TO INSERT A LINE SPACE HERE] 5. A Comparative Review of Cultural Rights provisions in the Kenyan Constitution (Desk Study, Harriet Deacon)
- Compared to other constitutions globally, the Constitution of Kenya (CoK) provides very broad rights protection, including protection for cultural rights;
- The CoK represents 'culture' in different ways, and sets up different kinds of rights and responsibilities, at the national, group and individual level;
- The CoK, like the South African Constitution, represents culture (in the singular) at the national level in a 'neutral' way as 'civilisation', democratic values, and national pride. This has been criticised for lacking a Kenyan 'cultural fingerprint';
- The CoK recognises the rights of culturally-defined groups to practise their cultures (in the plural), as long as these are consistent with human rights provisions; it seeks to protect the interests of cultural minorities and indigenous groups within the devolved county system;
- Like many of the constitutions influenced by civil law traditions, the CoK protects 'freedom of artistic creativity' as well as freedom of expression and cultural association in accordance with the Bill of Rights. [NOT POSSIBLE TO INSERT A LINE SPACE HERE]
6. The Case of Dominion Farm v. Residents of Yala Swamp, Siaya County (Case Study, Steve Ouma Akoth)
- The inquiry on how the 2010 constitution is used to claim cultural rights requires multi-layered research methods that examine both places (such as Yala, Kisumu and Nairobi) and spaces such as the World Trade Organization;
- The formulation and provision of cultural rights in the Constitution of Kenya (CoK) has enabled the use of culture to define and make matters of boundary and jurisdiction more acceptable, hence enhancing the visibility of various material claims such as those involving land rights in rural Kenya; [LINE BREAK NEEDED HERE PLS] - The legal framing of right to property (such as land) has been made more elastic and become framed in the mode of 'living customary law' and heritage under the aegis of the CoK;
- The judicial practice of representational suit has been mobilized in defining community not only as a legal entity but also (and much more) as a cultural group, as in the case of Yimbo-Yala Swamp Farmers' Society.
Sectors Communities and Social Services/Policy,Creative Economy,Education,Environment,Leisure Activities, including Sports, Recreation and Tourism,Government, Democracy and Justice,Culture, Heritage, Museums and Collections

 
Description The uses to which our findings have been put, largely in Kenya, have been many and varied. The types of impact include social, cultural, economic, and policy-related. Beneficiaries (including people from different sectors of Kenyan society who have attended our engagement events and report having benefited from networking and knowledge exchange) include representatives of national and county governments, policy-makers, heritage managers and practitioners, cultural heritage stakeholders including non-state museum curators and ordinary citizens, lawyers, human rights practitioners, media, artists, writers, publishers, NGOs, community-based organisations (CBOs), activists and other members of civil society. This short report will highlight some of the main impacts arising. A much longer report has been submitted to the ESRC, together with 20 supporting documents. (Please also see items listed under Policy.) NB It is not possible to insert paragraph breaks at some points below. ANTI-FGM/C IMPACT NGOs, donors and other development organizations working to end female genital mutilation/cutting (FGM/C) in East Africa and internationally have shown great interest in former PI Lotte Hughes's work on FGM/C and Alternative Rites of Passage (ARP), which are an important element in anti-FGM/C strategy. Many have accepted Hughes' point that ARP is a highly under-researched subject, which deserves greater attention from both scholars and practitioners working collaboratively. For example, her recommendations on how to improve ARP were taken up by the Anti-FGM Board of Kenya, a government body, and fed into new guidance on ARP which the Board launched, for NGOs and communities across Kenya that organise ARP, in Dec. 2018. Other organizations, such as the NGOs World Vision and Amref, are also considering ways of using her recommendations in their policy and practice. Collaborative work that Hughes initiated with the University of Leicester, which also involves health and other types of practitioner (and hence qualifies as impact outside academia), centres on proposed future networking and research on ARP to be carried out, funds permitting, by a UK-Kenya team made up of scholars and practitioners. Mark Lamont, former project Research Associate, is also involved in this activity, since his research focuses on the closely related subject of gender violence around forced adult male circumcision in Kenya (he has been awarded a Wellcome Trust grant to pursue this research for 12 months at the Open University, with a view to making a larger ESRC bid later, see Further Funding). The Leicester plans (which are in their early stages) grew out of exchanges between Hughes and the INGO 28toomany, which works to eradicate FGM/C in Africa. This INGO is part of the proposed collaboration, as are the Nairobi-based NGOs Amref and World Vision which both facilitated Hughes's fieldwork, the (Government of Kenya's) Anti-FGM Board, the Population Council, Orchid Project, and others. The collaboration kicked off with a workshop at the university's Institute of Advanced Studies (LIAS) in March 2018, initiated by Hughes, to discuss the potential for networking and research. Participants included two Kenyan scholars (contacts of Hughes's), scholars including Lamont, students, and UK-based health practitioners. Since then, LIAS applied unsuccessfully for a GCRF networking grant to take the collaboration further; a fresh bid will be made in 2019. COUNTY GOVERNMENTS AND CULTURE [par break required] Impacts are emerging from Kenyan county governments and key figures in the national government of the briefing report 'The Uses and Management of Culture by Kenya County Governments' (2017), by Gordon Omenya and Mark Lamont, based on a case/desk study they jointly conducted. An initial response from Dr Kiprop Lagat, national Director of Culture, was: "[The report] is a positive contribution to the culture discourse in the country especially with regard to the counties." (Email to Hughes, 6 Feb. 2018). He has subsequently used the report in speeches he regularly makes when visiting communities and attending cultural festivals across Kenya, in which he emphasises the uses of culture in building national unity and cross-cultural understanding. He also reports that he drew on the report's recommendations when working on the draft Culture Bill that is currently before parliament, and due to be enacted in the next quarter (autumn 2018). 'Your research talked of the lack of a cultural policy in the counties [and] we are responding to the issues you raised' (interview with Hughes, June 2018, Nairobi). Other impacts reported by county cultural officials et al.: - the report recommended that culture should be managed in a different way at county level, and not combined as it often is with dockets such as education, social services and tourism. This can leave under-resourced cultural officials tasked with performing duties that are not related to culture. In Kisumu County, the Director of Culture, referring to our report, has convinced the county government to combine the dockets of culture and heritage in one department. The departments have subsequently been reorganized, leading to the creation of a docket of Culture, Arts and Heritage which comes under a new Department of Tourism, Sports and Culture. That represents a major step forward in managerial, policy, and conceptual terms. The director reports that this reorganization will ensure greater coherence in the delivery of services related to culture. He states that our report is a "must read" which has led to his increased understanding of cultural issues, and how they should be managed. - Similarly, in Lamu County the Director of Culture reports major policy changes related to the report's recommendations. Previously, the county did not have a county cultural policy, which hampered its ability to manage cultural issues. It has now secured funding from USAID and DFID to assist it in drawing up a cultural policy. This initiative is part of the Agile and Harmonized Assistance for Devolved Institutions (AHADI) programme, which aims to strengthen and stabilise governance in newly devolved political systems. The docket of culture has been enabled to draw up a sector plan on culture and heritage as well as a cultural policy. These developments can be directly linked to the influence of our report. - In Narok County, the Director of Culture also states that he has been able to use our report to convince the county leadership of the need for a cultural policy. Furthermore, 'using culture as a unifying factor, based on the briefing report, we made a proposal to the county government for a cultural centre and museum [whose construction is ongoing]. These two will form cultural spaces where people can learn and share about cultural issues, not only about the dominant Maasai community but also other minority ethnic communities who have lived in Narok for many years.' This type of initiative is crucial for easing the current socio-political tensions in Narok County, where ethnic groups are in conflict with one another. - the Kenyan director of a major research institute in Nairobi reports: 'Your report findings ... can be used to understand how culture is being navigated by different players such as the 'unsatisfied' CBOs [community-based organizations] and county officials.' She plans to cite the report in work she is doing on cultural matters. - David Mbuthia (Keeper of Western and Central Regions, National Museums of Kenya) reports: 'Your report [on counties and culture] was the first in this field, and it gave me some insight into what the counties are using heritage for. I am able to prove on the ground some aspects of that report, for example counties' use of heritage for tourism. The competition that is seen to exist between heritage and tourism [in the counties] ought not to be there, because heritage is a product which tourism and other issues of development can be hitched onto. I will build on the report, by focusing on particular case studies.' In this way, our findings are influencing and feeding into national culture management. IMPACT OF HARRIET DEACON'S REPORT Project consultant Dr Deacon researched and wrote a desk study for us that resulted in the 2016 report 'A comparative review of cultural rights provisions in the Kenyan constitution' (see Publications). This examined Kenyan cultural rights provisions and looked comparatively at cultural rights provisions in other constitutions around the world. Deacon is also a UNESCO trainer and consultant, and later drew on this research to write training materials for UNESCO. For example, they were used at the workshop 'Training of Trainers for Africa', Constantine, Algeria (28 Sept-2 Oct 2015). Convened by UNESCO, this was described as an 'expert workshop on supporting policy development in the field of intangible cultural heritage'. Some 45 participants took part, and many more people will have been reached once the trainers returned to their home countries and applied their new knowledge in the workplace. Other impacts of Deacon's report include this example from Uganda. The report was cited, and sections of it quoted, in the Cross-Cultural Foundation of Uganda (CCFU) booklet 'Understanding Cultural Rights in Uganda: An important but neglected dimension of human rights' (CCFU 2017, p. 7). Emily Drani, Executive Director of the Kampala-based organization, who also attended one of our project events in Nairobi, wrote to thank us, and to say how useful the organization has found the report. Hughes followed up in May 2018, and received this update from Ms Drani: 'Our cultural rights publication [which drew on Deacon 2017] has been widely distributed and used for our engagement with human rights-focused organisations in Uganda. The publication has proved to be a good point of reference for elaborating on cultural rights in the local context' (email received 29/5/2018). More impact information will be added as evidence emerges.
First Year Of Impact 2016
Sector Communities and Social Services/Policy,Education,Environment,Healthcare,Government, Democracy and Justice,Culture, Heritage, Museums and Collections,Other
Impact Types Cultural,Societal,Economic,Policy & public services

 
Description Report by the UN Special Rapporteur in the field of cultural rights
Geographic Reach Multiple continents/international 
Policy Influence Type Citation in other policy documents
URL http://www.ohchr.org/EN/HRBodies/HRC/RegularSessions/Session31/.../A.HRC.31.59_E.do...
 
Description Response to Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) by KenGen, re-geothermal power plants, Kenya
Geographic Reach Africa 
Policy Influence Type Participation in a national consultation
 
Description The Protection of Traditional Knowledge and Traditional Cultural Expressions Bill (Kenya, 2015): Response and Commentary on draft legislation
Geographic Reach Africa 
Policy Influence Type Implementation circular/rapid advice/letter to e.g. Ministry of Health
Impact It appears that our joint submission to the Kenyan Government influenced a revision to this Bill, which was enacted in 2016. It is too early to say what the longer-term impacts may be. But the highly respected blog 'IP Kenya - Intellectual Property from a Kenyan Perspective' - picked up on the formal submission made by Dr Lotte Hughes, Prof John Harrington and Dr Harriet Deacon to the Kenyan Government on two draft bills. The blog did so in Dec. 2015, and discussed our submission, name-checking the authors, in the post given below. We subsequently engaged with the blogger, Kenyan scholar Victor Nzomo, who attended a workshop we hosted in Nairobi in April 2016.
URL https://ipkenya.wordpress.com/2015/12/16/comments-on-the-protection-of-traditional-knowledge-and-tra...
 
Description recommendations on Alternative Rites of Passage for Anti-FGM Board, Kenya
Geographic Reach Africa 
Policy Influence Type Implementation circular/rapid advice/letter to e.g. Ministry of Health
 
Description ESRC Research Grants (Open Call)
Amount £628,157 (GBP)
Organisation Economic and Social Research Council 
Sector Public
Country United Kingdom
Start 09/2014 
End 08/2017
 
Description Research grant
Amount £62,626 (GBP)
Funding ID 213073/2/18/2 
Organisation Wellcome Trust 
Sector Charity/Non Profit
Country United Kingdom
Start 09/2018 
End 09/2019
 
Title Katiba Cultural Rights 
Description A collection of written and visual data gathered in Kenya by the research team. Most of the data, apart from the most sensitive, was deposited a year ago with ReShare (the UK Data Service), on a Safeguarded Access basis. The data includes transcripts of interviews, conversations, field notes, Focus Group Discussions, notes on meetings and other participant observation, images, audio, some secondary source material, together with READMEs, questionnaires, a consent form and information sheet used in fieldwork. The entire data set, including sensitive material which the Open University's [OU] human research ethics committee deemed unsuitable for sharing on ReShare, is held on a secure drive at The Open University. This sensitive material was gathered by PI Lotte Hughes (on female genital mutilation/cutting, FGM/C) and by former Research Assoc. Zoe Cormack. It will be the responsibility of the OU to decide, since the departure of the PI and all team members, where this data will be held in future. (It is currently reviewing its data archiving policy and practice.) The OU contact person, for further enquiries, is carole.moyles@open.ac.uk. Your system does not make it possible to give the multiple answer 'yes and no' to the question below, 'Is this research database ... available to others?', so I have answered Yes. 
Type Of Material Database/Collection of data 
Year Produced 2018 
Provided To Others? Yes  
Impact There are no impacts to report. Users of the data via ReShare have not been in contact. 
 
Description Future research on Alternative Rites of Passage (ARP), PI Hughes with Leicester University and an NGO 
Organisation University of Leicester
Department Institute for Advanced Studies
PI Contribution The second partner is the NGO 28toomany, which works internationally on FGM/C and anti-FGM/C strategies in Africa. Lotte Hughes (former PI) initially made overtures to the NGO, via global operations manager Sean Callaghan, suggesting there was great potential for more collaborative research on ARP, a highly under-researched subject which she studied for the ESRC project. The NGO is particularly keen on research that involves collaboration between scholars and practitioners, with a practical outcome, as is Hughes. 28toomany had existing contacts at Leicester, who responded positively to the idea. These contacts include Dr Diane Levine, Director of the Institute for Advanced Studies (IAS). An initial workshop on ARP took place at Leicester on 8-9 March 2018 to discuss how to take the plans forward, and lay the groundwork for a bid for external funding, initially for a networking grant. Lotte ensured that participants included two of her Kenyan scholarly contacts; Leicester raised funding to bring them to the event. Hughes played a key role in drawing up an invitation list that included practitioners, students and scholars, in planning the programme, and on the day itself. (See publications for what came out of it; Lotte wrote the major part of this online article, hosted by IAS.)
Collaborator Contribution Facilitation and seed funding for a proposed collaborative research group, to be based at the University of Leicester.Leicester subsequently offered a research fellowship to one of the visiting Kenyan scholars, Prof Grace Wamue-Ngare.
Impact It is too early to say, discussions are at an early stage. The proposed collaboration is multi-disciplinary, including NGO practitioners working on anti-FGM/C programmes in Kenya, and scholars working on the same, in the academic disciplines of history, anthropology, criminology, law, human rights, cultural studies, maybe more.
Start Year 2018
 
Description The Katiba Institute 
Organisation The Katiba Institute
PI Contribution The PI and her team were commissioned to write a chapter on culture and pluralism for a book edited by Yash Pal Ghai and Jill Cottrell Ghai, two of the Institute's directors (also its founders, details under Publications). Before publication in hard copy (which to date has not happened yet) this chapter (together with others) was published on their high-profile website and comments welcomed by members of the public. Earlier, the PI and project consultant Steve Ouma Akoth were invited to publish on cultural rights issues on the Katiba Corner page which the Institute publishes every Saturday in the national Star newspaper, which covers many justice and rights issues in Kenya. (Listed under Publications.) Hughes has also contributed to an ongoing legal challenge being mounted by the Katiba Institute (KI), collectively with other organisations and NGOs in Kenya, to a lawsuit brought by a Kenyan medical doctor, Tatu Kamau, which seeks to overturn the Prohibition of FGM Act and the Anti-FGM Board, and to legalise FGM/C for 'adult willing women'. Hughes's contribution was written from a cultural rights and historical perspective, and drew from her research on FGM/C. She continues to stay in close contact with the Ghais and other lawyers at the KI; for instance she was commissioned in 2019 to co-write with KI lawyer Emily Kinama a chapter on how the right to culture has been implemented and asserted since the passing of the constitution eight years ago, for a book edited by the Ghais, to be published in English and Kiswahili and aimed at the general public (see publications).
Collaborator Contribution Yash Pal Ghai, founder and co-director of the Katiba Institute, agreed to write a Foreword to the Special Issue of the journal African Studies, the main written output of our research (June 2018, issue no. 77/2, guest edited by former PI Hughes and former Research Associate Mark Lamont). This was a considerable honour, since he is the most eminent constitutional lawyer in Kenya and also renowned internationally for his work in crafting, writing and advising on the drafting of constitutions around the world. More informally, his partner Jill Ghai (and to a lesser extent Yash Pal) were in regular communication with the PI and her team throughout the duration of the project, sharing information (such as draft legislation, historical documents, and news of developments in our field in Kenya), and generally supporting the research, which was invaluable.
Impact See Publications.
Start Year 2014
 
Description Anthropology Seminar at the University of Nairobi 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Undergraduate students
Results and Impact Mwika Kiarie and Faith Mwikali (students) invited Mark Lamont to the University of Nairobi Anthropology Students Union. Their anthropology programme is new and the invitation to come and speak was made during the project's final conference at the British Institute in Eastern Africa, Nairobi, on 31 May. It was an opportunity to speak about anthropology in a context where that discipline is just beginning to attract students from Kenya and overcoming what might be, for some, a poor public relations image.

About two dozen students and their administrator(s) attended. There were several preliminary talks. Dr Lamont spoke on 'What is anthropology good for?' and discussed the application of ethnographic insights to debates about ongoing social and economic problems. After a brief historical introduction, outlying the philanthropic funding of early 20th century anthropology in colonial Africa for solving 'race' problems associated with development, the group discussed some of the political uses of anthropology in the Cold War period, tracing out the ethics of applied social sciences. The student body suggested research topics they were interested in pursuing and why. The relevance of anthropological methods for understanding these topics in wider social contexts and for the making of policy and activist practices was then discussed.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2017
 
Description BIEA (Nairobi) Workshop, April 2016 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Other audiences
Results and Impact This was the second of two annual workshops hosted by the project team at the British Institute in Eastern Africa (BIEA), Nairobi. It was entitled 'Cultural Rights in Action: from global policy to local practice', and aimed largely at local cultural stakeholders. The morning session featured a keynote by Kenyan High Court Judge Joel Ngugi and presentations about the project team's research. The afternoon session centred on a roundtable discussion with key contacts and research assistants.
38 people attended. We were very pleased with the response, and the variety of backgrounds and different interests represented by participants, as one of the main aims of the event was to facilitate discussion between sectors which do not usually get the opportunity to talk to one another (e.g. heritage, the judiciary, academe, human rights practitioners, NGOs, etc.). We were also pleased with the diversity of organisations represented. 16 people went on to attend the afternoon session which was designed to be a smaller and more intimate event giving further opportunity for discussion.
Everyone who filled in a feedback form felt that their knowledge of cultural rights and constitutional change had increased as a result of taking part in the workshop and agreed that they had learnt something new from mixing with other stakeholders. 74% said that the workshop had helped them to think about this topic in a different way and 87% of the respondents (87%) said that they planned to use what they had learned at the workshop.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2016
URL https://katibaculturalrights.com/2016/05/09/alternative-justice-systems-and-the-katiba-judge-ngugis-...
 
Description Blog for World Vision - Lotte Hughes 
Form Of Engagement Activity Engagement focused website, blog or social media channel
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact A blog written by PI Lotte Hughes about Alternative Rites of Passage in Kenya was published on the blog of the international NGO World Vision on 6th February to mark the International Day of Zero Tolerance for FGM (female genital mutilation). The blog was entitled 'Making a song and dance about FGM'. World Vision reported that they had received the following comment/ feedback:

"No woman should have to endure FGM anywhere in the world. We live in the 21st century, why oh why are women and children still suffering. I really hope that sooner rather than later World Vision can make a difference. Bless you" ??????"?

"Keep up the good work."
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2017
URL http://www.worldvision.org.uk/news-and-views/blog/2017-blogs/february/making-song-dance-fgm
 
Description Conference on cultural rights - Copenhagen 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact Invited paper by Lotte Hughes as the international conference Negotiating Cultural Rights, University of Copenhagen, 13-14 November 2015. Papers were invited, largely from scholars, commenting on reports produced by the outgoing UN Special Rapporteur in the field of cultural rights, Farida Shaheed, who was also present at the conference. These will be published in a volume edited by conference organisers Profs Helle Porsdam and Lucky Belder (likely publisher Cambridge University Press). This was also an impact activity, as Lotte's paper influenced incoming UN Special Rapporteur Karima Bennoune's first report to the Human Rights Council of the UN, 31st Session (3 Feb. 2016), and she included some of Lotte's points in her chosen themes to take forward.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2015
URL https://katibaculturalrights.files.wordpress.com/2015/10/new-generation-thinkers.pdf
 
Description Durham Centre for Contemporary African History Seminar 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Other audiences
Results and Impact Zoe Cormack (former Research Associate, who left the project in June 2016) was invited to speak at an invited seminar at the Durham University Centre for Contemporary African History on 17 Jan 2017. It was attended by staff and postgraduate students from the History and Law departments. She presented a paper based on fieldwork done in (April-May 2016) with Abdikadir Kurewa at the site of Lake Turkana Wind Power. A jointly authored blog (see link below) followed the seminar in which Zoe Cormack and Abdikadir Kurewa discussed the reasons for local tensions around the project - and why the past is important for understanding the social impact of infrastructure developments. This blog was later reproduced by the Rift Valley Institute on the http://mipakani.net website.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2017
URL https://centreforcontemporaryafricanhistory.com/2017/02/07/gone-with-the-wind/
 
Description Final Conference in Nairobi, 'Cultural Rights: the new crossroads?' 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact 51 people including 6 project staff and 4 student assistants attended this one-day conference which was the final event of our project. It took place at the British Institute in Eastern Africa, Nairobi. We used this occasion to launch and discuss 'The Uses and Management of Culture by Kenya County Governments: A Briefing Report' by Mark Lamont and Gordon Omenya. The programme also included two panel discussions: 'Devolution from Below' and 'Youth and Popular Culture'. We were very pleased with the response we got, both in terms of the numbers of people who wished to attend and the prominent position many of them have in Kenyan civil society. The audience included academics, lawyers, NGO workers, artists, journalists, publishers and students. We were also pleased with the diversity of organisations and interests represented, as we had considered this carefully when planning the event. We were able to bring 3 representatives from county governments (Directors of Culture Mr Swanya, Mr Ali and Mr Otieno from Narok, Lamu and Kisumu respectively). We were particularly pleased at the number of young students who attended and the input they made in discussions. Mark Lamont was able to follow up on this when he was invited by Mwika Kiarie and Faith Mwikali to lead a seminar at the University of Nairobi Anthropology Students Union (see separate entry).
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2017
 
Description International Development Seminar (Open University, Milton Keynes) 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Other audiences
Results and Impact Dr Zoe Cormack (the project's initial Research Associate, she was later replaced by Mark Lamont) gave a paper entitled Promoting Pastoralist Heritage and Alternative Visions for Development in northern Kenya. Drawing on preliminary research findings, it discussed the positioning by pastoralist groups in response to development initiatives in the region. She received useful feedback and questions from participants and has gone on to have further discussions with several people. The organisers have since featured our project blog in their newsletter and invited us back to present more finalised findings next year.
20 people attended from several departments.

On Friday, 6 November 2015 a blog post by ZOe was included ID@OU: International Development News & Events, a monthly newsletter suggesting they continue to follow the project as a result of this workshop.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2015
URL http://www.open.ac.uk/arts/research/ferguson-centre/events/promoting-pastoralist-heritage
 
Description Keynote Lecture by Joyce Nyairo as part of our final events in Nairobi 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact Joyce Nyairo, a prominent Kenyan public intellectual and cultural analyst, spoke on the subject of 'Urban rites and the politics of recognition', a paper that discussed the lives, agency and identity of street children in Kenya. The free event was held at the Louis Leakey Auditorium, Nairobi National Museum, and was open to everyone. The lecture was promoted widely on social media and there was a good turn-out on the day. The audience included academics, lawyers, NGO workers, artists, journalists and students. The lecture was followed by a musical performance by local rap artist Monaja and DJ Karizma, and a drinks reception. 31 feedback forms were filled in. 3 yes/no questions were asked. 31 people felt that they had learned something new about the topic and that the lecture had made them think about the topic in a different way. 29 people felt they would make use of what they had learnt in their work including in research, writing, education and advocating for street children. A number of people requested more similar events in the future.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2017
 
Description Lake Turkana windfarm blog 
Form Of Engagement Activity Engagement focused website, blog or social media channel
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact SEE NICOLA'S EARLIER ENTRY, ASK ZOE TO DESCRIBE IMPACTS/OUTCOMES
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2017
URL https://centreforcontemporaryafricanhistory.com/2017/02/07/gone-with-the-wind/
 
Description Launch of journal Special Issue, Nairobi 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact To be added, the activity has not taken place yet but will do in June 2018
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2018
 
Description Northern Ireland Roundtable 
Form Of Engagement Activity A formal working group, expert panel or dialogue
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact The project team held a Roundtable on Cultural Rights and Post Conflict transformation: Perspectives from Kenya and Northern Ireland at Queen's University, Belfast, on 14 October 2016. The event was hosted by Neil Jarman of The Senator George J. Mitchell Institute for Global Peace, Security and Justice, Queen's, and included papers by Steve Akoth, Lotte Hughes, Mark Lamont and Prof. Colin Harvey (Queen's). The aim was to explore some of the parallels between post-conflict challenges in Kenya and Northern Ireland, especially concerning identity, culture and rights/justice, and to share ideas and insights with colleagues working on that country.

Prof Harvey commented: 'International human rights law, and human rights lawyers, would tend to frame these conversations as the state failing to uphold international human rights standards at the national level by not protecting individuals from human rights abuses by third parties.' He wondered to what extent these questions also emerge in the relevant state reports to the UN Human Rights Treaty Monitoring Bodies (and what those treaty monitoring bodies have had to say as part of the narrative around these questions). He said he thought the work presented raised stark questions around what might work in order to build an effective human rights culture in practice.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2016
 
Description Panel discussion and book signing at Storymoja Festival, Nairobi 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact Lotte Hughes was invited to organise a panel discussion at Storymoja, Nairobi (an annual international literary and arts festival) on the theme of cultural rights and constitutional change, subject of the ESRC-funded research project she leads. However this was also an engagement activity stemming from her previous AHRC project since fellow panellist Karega-Munene and Hughes used the opportunity to speak about the book (with Annie Coombes) Managing Heritage, Making Peace: History, Identity and Memory in Contemporary Kenya, main written output of the earlier project, and to sign copies afterwards in the festival bookshop. The panel discussion began by focusing on this book. About 65 people attended the event itself, but many more will have read about it later in local press coverage.

It is too soon to measure impacts, other than immediate audience feedback which was overwhelmingly positive - many people asked me for further information, both about the book and my new research. Two members of the audience immediately asked for the transcript, and a local law student said he was so inspired by the discussion that he had decided to write his thesis on the topic.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2014
 
Description Storymoja Festival (Nairobi, Kenya) 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact The activity was a panel on cultural rights and constitutional change at this annual international arts festival in Nairobi, Kenya, convened by the project PI Lotte Hughes at the invitation of the festival organisers. The panel discussion sparked questions, comments, and rich discussion with the audience. Panel members were Lotte, Aghan Odero Agan (then director of the Kenya Cultural Centre), Kenyan scholars Karega-Munene and Steve Ouma Akoth (latter a consultant on our project), and indigenous rights activist Daniel Salau. It was chaired by Mshai Mwongela, a leading 'orator', actor, director and storyteller. The audience was about 45 persons, but news of the event will have reached other festival goers, and was flagged up in media coverage. The event (and other contacts made at the festival outside this panel activity) also generated contacts we have followed up on, e.g. invitees to future project events. The event, held at Nairobi National Museum, also gave Lotte and former research colleague Karega-Munene the opportunity to talk about their new book Managing Heritage, Making Peace: History, Identity and Memory in Contemporary Kenya (third co-author Annie E. Coombes did not attend); the panel discussion began by focusing on this book. Afterwards they signed copies at the festival bookshop.

One member of the audience, a Kenyan law student, said he would, as a result of the event, choose to write his thesis on the topic of the discussion. Others asked for more information about the research project, and how they could engage with it.

We have been in touch with the organisers to see if they were able to provide specific feedback on our panel but they were not able to.

This is a prestigious event, sister festival to Hay Literary Festival in the UK.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2014
URL http://www.businessdailyafrica.com/Imagine-the-world-beside-Soyinka-at-Storymoja-bookfest/-/539444/2...
 
Description UK Colloquium 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact This was our main UK event aimed at engagement with stakeholders and potential research beneficiaries. The colloquium, entitled Cultural Rights and Constitutional Change in Kenya: Progress and Challenges, was held at the Institute of Commonwealth Studies, London on 12th October. It was attended by members of our project Advisory Board: Clara Arokiasamy (chair), Prof. Mary Hickman, Dr Neil Carrier and Prof. John Wolffe. Other attendees included Sir Edward Clay (former British High Commissioner to Kenya), Dr. Nici Nelson (Goldsmiths), Victor Lal (ICS), Dr. Jeremy Lind (Institute of Development Studies, University of Sussex), Lucy Claridge (Legal Director, Minority Rights Group), Edward Paice (Director of the Africa Research Institute), Nicholas Watts (ICS) and Ramnik Shaw (lawyer and writer).

Feedback forms were completed by attendees, who all reported that they felt their knowledge had increased, their thinking about issues had been changed, and that our work could be useful to policy makers and had wider uses outside Kenya.

With regard to increased knowledge, comments included references to 'original, cutting edge research' (Nici Nelson). Elsbeth Court felt her knowledge of post-constitution legislation had increased. Jeremy Lind thought we offered 'fascinating insights on the background, history and cultural rights provisions in the constitution.' Edward Clay felt it useful to be reminded of the timescale and context of Kenya's constitution and that we 'illuminated the difference between declaring rights and enforcing them'.

A paper presented by team member Steve Ouma Akoth was mentioned twice in response to a question (on the feedback form) about how the papers had changed the way attendees think, once by Jeremy Lind and once by Neil Carrier. Nici Nelson and Ramnik Shah both made reference to (PI) Lotte Hughes's paper in this regard. Several people reported that they would use what they had learnt in their own research and writing - Elsbeth Court, Nici Nelson, Jeremy Lind, Neil Carrier, Victor Lal and Ramnik Shah. Edward Clay felt it might be useful in teaching/training.

Elsbeth Court thought our findings could be useful to 'museums' provisions for contemporary art and history of Kenya'. Jeremy Lind thought we had 'very clear insight for diverse fields - health, land, resources, peacebuilding, gender'. Ramnik Shah also felt that 'policy making could be done on a more informed basis'. Sir Edward Clay expressed the view that 'diplomats and policy makers need first to listen in order to understand phenomenon with which they have to deal.' He went on to say that the research had uses outside Kenya, in terms of 'trying to pin down what traditional values and culture mean and ways of promoting what is good and dealing with what is divisive and corrosive. Several other respondents felt the research would be useful in other contexts, particularly in areas that involve grappling with new constitutions or cultural rights issues.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2016
 
Description seminar at The Open University 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Other audiences
Results and Impact Lotte Hughes (PI) and Research Associate Mark Lamont gave a joint presentation (2 separate but related papers) at a seminar jointly organised by the OU's Ferguson Centre for African and Asian Studies and the International Development Centre (IDC). The overall title was: 'Why is genital cutting so controversial? FGM abandonment and forced male circumcision as rights issues in Kenya today'. The aim was to disseminate research outcomes to OU colleagues, primarily those working on international development issues. The papers sparked lively discussion and questions, that ranged beyond Kenya to Nigeria and the USA, and touched on the links between voluntary male circumcision and global health campaigns against HIV/AIDS. There is no option in the drop-down menu above to select 'scholars' as an 'other audience', but the audience was entirely made up of scholars - faculty members and one overseas postgraduate student from Kenya.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2017
URL https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/why-is-genital-cutting-so-controversial-fgm-abandonment-and-forced-ma...
 
Description seminar at the British Institute in Eastern Africa, Nairobi (Kenya) 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Postgraduate students
Results and Impact This seminar on 11 November 2014 was the first formal academic event hosted by the project team to present on research plans, and receive feedback which would help shape those plans.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2014
URL http://www.africadesk.ac.uk/news/2014/nov/06/seminar-cultural-rights-and-kenyas-new-constitutio/
 
Description stakeholders workshop (Nairobi, Kenya) 
Form Of Engagement Activity A formal working group, expert panel or dialogue
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact This was the first of two annual one-day workshops for cultural rights' stakeholders (principally Kenyan), aimed at engaging with local audiences and facilitating knowledge exchange and discussion between different sectors. The attendees included human rights lawyers, NGO practitioners, scholars, students, environmental activists, anti-FGM activists, staff of National Museums of Kenya, local writers and publishers, et al. Three panel discussions on the overall theme 'Cultural Rights in Critical Perspective' sparked many questions and lively audience discussion. Responses continued by email and in blogs on our project website, following the release of a workshop report. Feedback forms were used on the day to elicit positive responses from the majority of participants. We aim to continue this conversation at future events including a final conference in Nairobi in soring 2017.

Impact Report on Nairobi Workshop
Date: 14 April 2015
Attendees: 37 (Including 4 project staff and 4 student assistants). We were very pleased with the response we got, both in terms of the numbers of people who wished to attend and the prominent position many of them have in Kenyan civil society. We were also pleased with the diversity of organisations and interests represented as we had considered this carefully when putting the event together.
Feedback Forms: 22 forms were filled in and
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2015