This profile was current as of 2017, when she was part of the on-campus Kellogg community.
Lauren Honig (PhD, Cornell University), a visiting fellow for the 2016–17 academic year, conducts research on the political economy of development and comparative politics in sub-Saharan Africa. Her research interests include state building, property rights, natural resource governance, and plural systems of local authority.
At Kellogg, Honig plans to complete the book manuscript “Land, State-Building, and Political Authority in Africa.” This project investigates the development of plural property rights, critical to governance, economic development, and environmental policy. Based on 18 months of fieldwork in Senegal and Zambia, her research demonstrates how diverse systems of customary authority, such as traditional chiefdoms and Islamic marabouts, shape where state land titles develop.
She examines two key processes that replace customary land rights with state property rights, thereby extending the state’s authority over land. First, she studies local resistance to large-scale land acquisitions by the state and multinational corporations in an era of booming global demand for African agricultural land. Second, she shows that farmers in Zambia and Senegal strategically title their land in response to their communities’ type of customary authority. The work has implications for the livelihoods of small farmers and for state authority.
Honig’s earlier research is forthcoming as “Immigrant Political Economies and Exclusionary Policy in Africa” in Comparative Politics. Prior to graduate school, she served in the Peace Corps as a community health worker in Burkina Faso for two years. She starts as assistant professor of political science at Boston College in fall 2017.
State building; Property rights; Natural resource governance; Plural systems of local authority
Land, State-Building, and Political Authority in Africa
Honig Publishes Book on Customary Institutions and State Building in Africa
Oct 7, 2022
Former Kellogg Institute Visiting Fellow Lauren Honig (2016-17), assistant professor of political science at Boston College, has published a book based on work she completed a during her fellowship.
Honig Publishes her First Book
Sep 24, 2022
Congratulations to Former Visiting Fellow Lauren Honig for publishing her first book with Cambridge University Press.
‘Connecting Across the Generations’: Kellogg Scholars Reunite at Annual ASA Conference
Dec 4, 2019
Leaders from the Kellogg Institute for International Studies attended the African Studies Association conference in Boston last month, the first time in more than a decade that Kellogg has had a presence at the annual event.