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Dr Cynthia Kamwengo

Fellow, Margaret Anstee Centre, Newnham College



  • PhD in Human Geography, Durham University
  • MA in International Development, Flinders University
  • BA in Development Studies and Economics, University of Zambia


Dr Cynthia M. Kamwengo is an academic and policy analyst whose research focuses on the politics of global development and policy diffusion in the global South. Prior to joining the University of Cambridge, Dr Kamwengo was the CDS Postdoctoral Fellow in International Development at the University of Bath where she conducted research on the politics of knowledge production, South-South cooperation and trilateral cooperation in African countries.

Her current research project interrogates the strategies for cementing government trusteeship of the economy and shaping the public’s minds for development that the Zambian government has historically adopted from Commonwealth countries. The study also examines the source and impact of theories that suggest external actors are engaging in economic sabotage and the reasons non-alignment continues to influence how Zambia navigates tensions between Western countries and the East led by China and Russia. Expected outputs from the project include a book that will make conceptual contributions to the academic study of national identity, African agency and multilateralism.


  • Hackenesch, C., Kamwengo, C., Lacher, W. and van Staden, C. (2024) ‘No Sea Change: African Foreign Policies after Russia’s Invasion of Ukraine,’ in C. Hackenesch and W. Lacher (eds), The Russia-Ukraine War’s Shockwaves in Africa. A Zeitenwende for German Africa Policy? Megatrends Working Paper 10, pp. 4-8, doi:10.18449/2024MTA-WP10.
  • Kamwengo, C. (2024) ‘Social Media Debates on Zambia’s Evolving Relations with The West and East: Trends and Implications,’ Megatrends Policy Brief 21, doi:10.18449/2024MTA-PB21.
  • Haug, S. and Kamwengo, C.M. (2022) ‘Africa beyond South-South cooperation: A frame with limited resonance,’ Journal of International Development, pp. 1-17,
  • OECD (Piefer-Söyler, N. and Kamwengo, C. as lead authors) (2022) Triangular Cooperation with Africa, Paris: OECD Publishing.
  • Kamwengo, C. and Radley, B. (2022) The Why Africa Podcast: Rethinking Teaching and Research, available at
  • Kamwengo, C.M. (2019) ‘We need people like you: Reflections on identity and expectations in South-South Cooperation Research,’ in E. Mawdsley, E. Fourie and W. Nauta (eds) Researching South-South Development Cooperation: The Politics of Knowledge Production, London: Routledge, pp.73-77.
  • Kamwengo, C. M. (2017) ‘China and Brazil as Southern Africa’s Non-Interfering Development Partners: Rhetoric or Reality?’ Journal of Southern African Studies, Vol. 43, No. 5, pp. 1087-1101.