Dr Leon Mwamba Tshimpaka

Senior Postdoctoral Research Fellow

Dr Leon Mwamba Tshimpaka is a political scientist and pan-African scholar who explores people-centric approaches to governance that fully include ordinary citizens in the decision-making processes affecting their lives.

He holds a PhD in Political Sciences from the University of Pretoria and MA in Development Studies from the
University of South Africa.

Dr. Tshimpaka has joined the Centre for the Study of Governance Innovation (GovInn) since 2016, where he currently works as a Senior Postdoctoral Research Fellow for the Centre for the Study of Governance Innovation (GovInn) under the SARChI Chair in the Political Economy of Migration in the SADC Region in the Department of Political Sciences of the University of Pretoria.

First, Dr. Tshimpaka studies the political transnationalism of African migrants fromthe diaspora in their quest for democratic change in their homeland. He demonstrates that, in addition to remittances, African migrants have also become much more involved, either in person or online, in intercontinental citizenship from their receiving countries to either fight or shape and influence their homeland governance.

Second, Dr. Tshimpaka explores the way civil society can be a public sphere of mobilisation in which ordinary citizens claim participation in shrinking spaces and create news spaces outside state settings in pursuit of democratic change.

Third, Dr. Tshimpaka studies alternative regionalism and regional integration, in which regions can be viewed as unconventional socio-economic phenomena that can also be built in a multidimensional manner by non-state actors.These epitomize him as a self-built SADC and BRICS expert.

Fourth, Dr. Tshimpaka researches the relationship between anti-corruption initiatives and development in Africa. He argues that curbing corruption should yield developmental outcomes for
the socio-economic wellbeing of ordinary citizens.

Finally, Dr. Tshimpaka investigates EU-Africa relations from an African perspective that goes beyond colonial and neo-colonial hierarchies. In doing so, he recognizes that rethinking, unlearning, and improving existing knowledge production systems will result in knowledge pluriversalism, which encourages the recognition and incorporation of previously marginalized indigenous knowledge systems into our modern society.

Dr. Tshimpaka teaches intercontinental citizenship, netizenship, and alternative regionalism to Masters students in the Department of Political Sciences at the University of Pretoria. He taught undergraduate modules in Development Studies at the University of South Africa and co-lectured Jean-Monnet Course on African Politics and Regions to honours students in the Department of Political Sciences at the University of Pretoria. He is also a sessional lecturer in the Wits School of Governance at Wits University, external examiner at Zululand University in South Africa and adjunct professor in the School of Liberal Arts and Humanities at Worsen University in India. Dr Tshimpaka was a visiting scholar at the IDOS in Bonn/Germany, Ku Leuven in Belgium and University of Luxembourg in Luxembourg. He co-supervises PhD candidates in the Department of Political Sciences of the University of Pretoria.
Dr. Tshimpaka is a member of the following international academic and research platforms: Association for Borderlands Studies (ABS) at Arizona State University in the USA; Canadian Association of African Studies (CAAS) at Carleton University in
Canada; Midwest Political Sciences Association (MPSA) in the USA; Platform for African European Studies (PAES) in Leuven/Belgium; Council for European Studies (CES) at Columbia University in New York/USA; University Association for
Contemporary European Studies (UACES) in England; European Studies Association of Sub-Saharan Africa (ESASSA); RISC-RISE Consortium, to name a few. Dr. Tshimpaka is an author of books, book chapters and journal articles.

He speaks English, French, Portuguese, Swahili, and other African languages. ***
ORCID: 0000-0001-7097-3244.

Research interests

  • Governance and Sustainability
  • Human Security
  • Transboundary Governance
  • Anti-corruption strategies
  • Development Studies
  • Decolonial Thinking and Indigenous Knowledge Production
  • Migration, Borders and Transnationalism


Email: leon.mwamba@governanceinnovation.org
Skype: Leon.mwamba2
Twitter: @MwambaLeon