Rony Emmenegger

Rony Emmenegger, Dr.

Senior scientist

Human Geography

Tel.: 044 63 55165

Room number: Y25 L 30

Rony Emmenegger is a senior researcher of the Political Geography Unit at the University of Zurich. From 2014 to 2016, he was a visiting scholar at the Institute of Food and Resource Economics (IFRO) at the University of Copenhagen ( He received his PhD in Political Geography from the University of Zurich in 2017, entering a post-doc phase at the present.

Rony builds on extensive ethnographic field research experience both in rural and urban Ethiopia since 2009 and is dedicated to a nuanced understanding of the ‘global-in-the-local’. His PhD thesis, Writing Space and Time: An Ethnography of State Sedimentation in the Ethiopian Somali Frontier (University of Zurich, 2017), examines state formation as a process of materialization through which state power consolidates in a wide range of artifacts and material constructions in the city of Jigjiga, the capital of the Ethiopian Somali region. His research finds intellectual inspiration in political geography, anthropology, ecology and history, and focuses on the nexus between materiality, temporality and spatiality. With his work, he aims at contributing to an inherently political understanding of lived environments and to a better understanding of manifold entanglements of state-society relations in post-colonial Africa.


Research Interests:

  • Anthropology of the state
  • Memorial politics
  • Territorialization
  • (Land-)scapes and (infra-)structures
  • Property relations
  • Environmental politics