- African politics
- global indigenous politics
- land rights/reform
- migration and conflict
- natural resources and governance
- political violence
Matthew I. Mitchell (Ph.D. Queen’s) is an Associate Professor in the Department of Political Studies at the University of Saskatchewan. Prior to this appointment, he was an Assistant Professor in the School of Conflict Studies at Saint Paul University and a Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC) Postdoctoral Fellow in the Department of Political Science at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. His research focuses on African politics, global indigenous politics, land tenure reform, migration and conflict, natural resources and governance, peacebuilding and political violence. His work has appeared in journals such as African Studies Review; Commonwealth & Comparative Politics; Conflict, Security & Development; Democratization; Ethnopolitics; Journal of Agrarian Change; Journal of Peace Research; Politics, Groups, and Identities; and The International Journal of Human Rights. He has also published in numerous edited volumes and is a co-editor of New Approaches to the Governance of Natural Resources: Insights from Africa (Palgrave Macmillan, 2014) and People Changing Places: New Perspectives on Demography, Migration, Conflict, and the State (Routledge, 2019). He has conducted fieldwork in Canada, Côte d’Ivoire, Ghana and Uganda, and is currently principal investigator on a SSHRC Insight Grant (2017-2023) titled “The Far North Act in Ontario and the Plan Nord in Québec: Sons of the Soil Conflicts in the Making?”
People Changing Places: New Perspectives on Demography, Migration, Conflict, and the State, (co-edited with Isabelle Côté and Monica Duffy Toft), New York: Routledge (2019).
New Approaches to the Governance of Natural Resources: Insights from Africa, (co-edited with J. Andrew Grant and W. R. Nadège Compaoré), Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan (2014).
"FPIC as Peacebuilding Tool? Land Conflict and the Batwa in Eastern Democratic Republic of Congo" (with Landon Wagner), International Journal on Minority and Group Rights (forthcoming).
"The Plan Nord in Northern Québec, Canada: Pathway to Peace and Prosperity or Powder Keg?" (with Isabelle Côté, J. Andrew Grant and Dimitrios Panagos), Ethnopolitics (forthcoming).
"Indigenous Land Rights and Contentious Politics in Africa: The Case of Uganda," Ethnopolitics (forthcoming).
"The Power of Numbers: How Majority/Minority Status Affects Media Coverage and Framing of Indigenous Contentious Politics in Canada" (with Isabelle Côté, Megan Devries, J. Andrew Grant and Dimitrios Panagos), Politics, Groups, and Identities (forthcoming).
"Land Reform and Peacebuilding in Côte d’Ivoire: Navigating the Minefield," Journal of Agrarian Change 22 (2): 378-397 (2022).
"The Political Ecology of Cocoa in Ghana: Past, Present and Future Challenges" (with Chris Bryant), Natural Resources Forum 45 (4): 350-365 (2021).
"Effects of Terrorist Attacks on Access to Maternal Healthcare Services in Burkina Faso: A National Longitudinal Study" (with Thomas Druetz, Lalique Browne, Frank Bicaba and Abel Bicaba), BMJ Global Health 5 (9): 1-10 (2020).
"Indigenous Peoples, UNDRIP and Land Conflict: An African Perspective" (with Davis Yuzdepski), The International Journal of Human Rights 23 (8): 1356-1377 (2019).
“The Political Economy of Cocoa in Nigeria: A History of Conflict or Cooperation?” (with Taiwo Bello), Africa Today 64 (3): 71-91 (2018).
"The Far North Act in Ontario, Canada: A Sons of the Soil Conflict in the Making?" (with Isabelle Côté), Commonwealth & Comparative Politics 56 (2): 137-156 (2018).
"Migration, Sons of the Soil Conflict, and International Relations," International Area Studies Review, 21 (1): 51-67 (2018).
“Revisiting the World Bank’s Land Law Reform Agenda in Africa: The Promise and Perils of Customary Practices” (with Andrea Collins), Journal of Agrarian Change 18 (1): 112-131 (2018).
“Deciphering ‘Sons of the Soil’ Conflicts: A Critical Survey of the Literature” (with Isabelle Côté), Ethnopolitics 16 (4): 333-351 (2017).
“Elections and ‘Sons of the Soil’ Conflict Dynamics in Africa and Asia” (with Isabelle Côté), Democratization 23 (4): 657-677 (2016).
“Land Grievances and the Mobilization of Electoral Violence: Evidence from Côte d’Ivoire and Kenya” (with Kathleen Klaus), Journal of Peace Research 52 (5): 622-635 (2015).
“A Historical Institutionalist Understanding of Participatory Governance and Aboriginal Peoples: The Case of Policy Change in Ontario’s Mining Sector” (with J. Andrew Grant, Dimitrios Panagos and Michael Hughes), Social Science Quarterly 95 (4): 978-1000 (2014).
“Land Tenure Reform and Politics in Post-Conflict Côte d’Ivoire: a Precarious Peace in the Western Cocoa Regions,” Canadian Journal of African Studies 48 (2): 203-221 (2014).
“Migration, Citizenship and Autochthony: Strategies and Challenges for State-Building in Côte d’Ivoire,” Journal of Contemporary African Studies 30 (2): 267-287 (2012).
“Power Sharing and Peace in Côte d’Ivoire: Past Examples and Future Prospects,” Conflict, Security, & Development 12 (2): 171-191 (2012).
“Insights from the Cocoa Regions in Côte d’Ivoire and Ghana: Rethinking the Migration-Conflict Nexus,” African Studies Review 54 (2): 123-144 (2011).
"The Contentious Politics of Impact and Benefits Agreements: A 'Sons of the Soil' Conflict Perspective," Indigenous-Industry Agreements, Natural Resources and the Law, in Ibironke Odumosu-Ayanu and Dwight Newman, eds. New York: Routledge, 119-135 (2021).
"Land Reform, Peacebuilding and the 'Indigenous' Question in Africa: The Promise and Perils of Free, Prior and Informed Consent," Rethinking Land Reform in Africa: New Ideas, Opportunities and Challenges, in Cosmas Milton Obote Ochieng, ed. Abidjan: Africa Development Bank Group,168-177 (2020).
"Demography, Migration, Conflict, and the State: The Contentious Politics of Connecting People to Places," (with Isabelle Côté), People Changing Places: New Perspectives on Demography, Migration, Conflict, and the State, in Isabelle Côté, Matthew I. Mitchell and Monica Duffy Toft, eds. New York: Routledge, 3-20 (2019).
"Land Conflict and Electoral Violence in Côte d’Ivoire: A Micro-Level Analysis," Violence in African Elections: Between Democracy and Big Man Politics, in Mimmi Söderberg Kovacs and Jesper Bjarnesen, eds. London: Zed Books/Africa Now Series, 67-86 (2018).
“‘New’ Approaches to the Governance of Africa’s Natural Resources,” (with J. Andrew Grant, W. R. Nadège Compaoré and Mats Ingulstad), New Approaches to the Governance of Natural Resources: Insights from Africa, in J. Andrew Grant, W. R. Nadège Compaoré and Matthew I. Mitchell, eds. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan, 3-24 (2014).
“Bridging the Governance Gap in South Sudan: Connecting Policymakers to Populations in Africa’s Newest Oil-Producing Country,” (with Conrad Winn and Melissa Jennings), New Approaches to the Governance of Natural Resources: Insights from Africa, in J. Andrew Grant, W. R. Nadège Compaoré and Matthew I. Mitchell, eds. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan, 113-128 (2014).
“Prospects and Trends in the Governance of Africa’s Natural Resources: From Resource Conflicts to the Role of External and Internal Actors,” (with J. Andrew Grant, W. R. Nadège Compaoré and Timothy M. Shaw), New Approaches to the Governance of Natural Resources: Insights from Africa, in J. Andrew Grant, W. R. Nadège Compaoré and Matthew I. Mitchell, eds. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan, 267-284 (2014).
“Micro-Regionalisms, Information and Communication Technologies, and Migration in West Africa: A Comparative Analysis of Ghana’s Diamond, Cocoa, and Gold Sectors,” (with J. Andrew Grant, Frank K. Nyame and Natalia Yakovleva), Mapping Agency: Comparing Regionalisms in Africa, in Ulrike Lorenz-Carl and Martin Rempe, eds. Aldershot: Ashgate, 149-174 (2013).
“The Political Economy of Migration and Conflict in Ghana’s Cocoa Regions: Enduring Peace or Deepening Cleavages?” Africa Rising: a Continent’s Future through the Eyes of Emerging Scholars, in Erica Shaw and Hayley Mackinnon, eds. Waterloo, ON: Center for International Governance Innovation, 263-291 (2013).
“New Regionalisms, Micro-Regionalisms, and the Migration-Conflict Nexus: Evidence from Natural Resource Sectors in West Africa,” (with J. Andrew Grant and Frank K. Nyame). The Ashgate Research Companion to Regionalisms, in Timothy M. Shaw, J. Andrew Grant and Scarlett Cornelissen, eds. Aldershot: Ashgate, 375-396 (2011).
Research Reports and Popular Press:
"Land Reform and Peacebuilding in Côte d’Ivoire: Strange Bedfellows?" Op-Ed, Peace News Network, July 22, 2022.
"Sons of the Soil Conflicts." Oxford Research Group blog, October 10, 2019.
“Can an Economic Boom ensure Peaceful Elections in Côte d’Ivoire? Maybe, but Land Grievances Could Undermine Prospects for Peace” (with Kathleen Klaus). The Monkey Cage blog at Washington Post, October 20, 2015.
“Ghana’s Offshore Oil: Resource Curse or Blessing?” Africa Portal Backgrounder No. 44, Waterloo, ON: Center for International Governance Innovation (2012).
“Child Migration in Ghana: Issues, Risks and Opportunities.” Africa Portal Backgrounder No. 7, Waterloo, ON: Center for International Governance Innovation (2011).
Review of Global Indigenous Politics: A Subtle Revolution, by Sheryl Lightfoot, in Canadian Journal of Political Science 51 (2): 484-486 (2018).
Review of Immigrant Exclusion and Insecurity in Africa: Coethnic Strangers, by Claire L. Adida, in Political Science Quarterly 131 (1): 197-199 (2016).
Review of Anti-Refugee Violence and African Politics, by Ato Kwamena Onoma, in International Journal 69 (4): 633-635 (2014).
Review of Politics of Origin in Africa: Autochthony, Citizenship and Conflict, by Morten Bøås and Kevin Dunn, in Journal of Contemporary African Studies 32 (3): 401-403 (2014).
Review of The Great African War: Congo and Regional Politics, 1996-2006, by Filip Reyntjens, in The Round Table: The Commonwealth Journal of International Affairs 100 (412): 107-109 (2011).
Review of Africa’s Winds of Change: Memoirs of an International Tanzanian, by Al Noor Kassum in The Round Table: The Commonwealth Journal of International Affairs 99 (410): 575-577 (2010).
Review of Africa in Global Politics in the Twenty-first Century: A Pan-African Perspective, by Olayiwola Abegunrin in The Round Table: The Commonwealth Journal of International Affairs 99 (409): 449-452 (2010).
Africa conflict development governance and resource development indigenous migration peace peace building political violence politics
Education & Training
SSHRC Postdoctoral Fellow, Department of Political Science, University of Wisconsin-Madison (2013-2014)
Ph.D., Political Studies, Queen's University (2013)
M.A., Études Internationales, Université Laval (2008)
B.A., International Studies, University of Saskatchewan (2004)