Current Staff

Dr Freda Nkirote.

COUNTRY DIRECTOR – BIEA KENYA

Dr M’Mbogori is the Country Director of the British Institute in Eastern Africa (BIEA) where she joined as the Assistant Director in 2015. Formerly, she was the Head of Cultural Heritage Department at the National Museums of Kenya. She is an archaeologist with a PhD from University of Paris, France; a Master’s degree from University of Bergen, Norway; a Bachelor’s degree from University of Nairobi; a Post graduate diploma in museum studies and conservation, from University College London, and Field research methods certificate from the University of Harvard. She is currently the President of Pan-African Archaeological Association and Related studies (PAA).  Dr M’Mbogori’s research on the Early Iron Age in Kenya is fundamental to questions about the origins of modern economic strategies, heritage, land use and identities. Her ethnoarchaeological studies of ceramic technology among potters of Mt. Kenya and Coastal regions, have enriched archaeological interpretations. She is also involved in the “African Farming Networks” project as a co-investigator, where she is looking at issues related to material culture of the Marakwet community.

Dr Jane Humphris

DIRECTOR

Dr Humphris has been Director of the BIEA since 2018, and since 2019 has also held the position of Senior Research Associate at the McDonald Institute, University of Cambridge. Her main research focuses on the ancient iron production technologies of the Kingdom of Kush. Since 2011 her team has been excavating at the Royal City of Meroe in Sudan and collaborating with teams working at other Kushite iron production locations. She employs a combination of archaeological and archaeometallurgical methods to investigate the remains, with the aim of revealing the technological nature, socio-cultural role and politico-economic impact of ancient technologies and technologists during this key period of Sudan’s history. To complement the research in Sudan, she more recently stated a new project investigating Aksumite iron production in northern Ethiopia. In addition to the academic research, her team runs a comprehensive and diverse programme of community engagement and capacity building activities in Sudan, including festivals, community meetings, media outreach and Arabic open access publications.

Prince Guma

Research Fellow/Assistant Country Director

Prince Guma is an urban imaginer and research scientist. His research work is situated at the intersection of Science and Technology Studies (STS), Urban Studies, and Postcolonial Studies. Since 2012, Prince has actively engaged in academic work from a broad range of settings and associations in the developing world. This work is located in the worlds of East African development, emerging from a career of multiple engagements, shaped by his belief in the entangled nature and interconnectedness of things beyond tangents, and in scholarship as being more than just a field of specialist audiences within the academy. In his recent project, Prince has focused on exploring the multiple ways through which domains are constructed and reconstructed through the diffusion and uptake of digital technologies (focusing on energy, water, and ICT sectors) in the African city, under the department of Human Geography and Spatial Planning iron production, she also very interested in the theory and practice of cultural heritage management, the role and development of museums in Africa, and issues concerning ethical archaeological practice.

Janet Njoroge

HR & Administration Manager

Janet is currently BIEA HR & Admin Manager.  She joined BIEA in 2010 as a Bookkeeper.  In 2017, her position changed to be the BIEA’s Administrator until 2018 when the position changed again to BIEA Human Resource & Administration Manager to date.  Prior to joining BIEA, Janet worked at “Agakhan University Hospital Nairobi” as an Outreach Coordinator in the department of outreach and Post Graduate Medical Education .  She later worked at “Daystar University Athi River” in the Department of Finance.  She holds a Course in Business Management, Secretarial Studies and basic accounting.  She holds a Human Resource Management Course from Kenya Institute of Management and is currently furthering her Human Resource Course.  

Janet is an independent minded person who is always passionate in all that she does with a very keen eye to being a bridge between the less privileged’s journey and their transition to a better life.

Teresia Ngandi

Finance Manager

Tess joined BIEA in April 2016,  she is responsible for the Institute’s  Accounts and Finance Function. Prior to joining BIEA, She worked for Short Tenures in KWS under Finance Dept. as a Volunteer. Teresia has a Bachelor in Economics degree from Kenyatta University and CPA Certification from Strathmore University. Currently she is pursuing her Associate Chartered Accountant (ACA-Advanced Level), from Institute of Chartered Accountant In England and Wales (ICAEW).

She is passionate  to work  in a challenging position that grows her professional experience, analytical skills and a commitment to success.

Charles Mwaniki

AV Technician

An intriguing tale of an IT personnel yet an ambitious Visual Storyteller striving to accommodate his overrunning passion and reclaim his diligence from jump-cuts.

Christine Gibson

UK Programme Coordinator

Christine joined the BIEA in 2018. She holds a BA in Swahili & Social Anthropology from the School of Oriental & African Studies (SOAS), University of London, an MRes in Anthropological Research Methods (SOAS), and a former BIEA Graduate Attaché. Before joining the BIEA, Christine held a previous career in Social Housing & Local Government focusing on homelessness prevention and tenancy sustainment and has lived and worked in Spain, Germany, Italy, Greece, Luxembourg, Kenya and Tanzania.

Christine’s current research interests are African languages; Kiswahili & Kimwani, the Anthropology of Machine Learning, epistemological issues related to ‘studying up’ in anthropological research, critical race theory, whiteness and AI for Social Good. These topics were also examined in her MRes dissertation, titled “Race Against the Machines: can we talk about whiteness in Algorithmic Design?”, which analysed algorithms as sociotechnical activities; how certain algorithms come to reify biases found in whiteness and if we can begin to design technologies that could revise their own biases as they encounter alternative ontologies and modes of existence.

Outside of academia, Christine has worked as an independent researcher for Non-Governmental Organisations in the UK, Kenya and Tanzania and has worked with communities in Risa, Amboseli National Park for thirteen years. More recently, Christine has held roles as a Swahili Research Associate for a Big Tech client, has taught Swahili at the University of Cambridge and managed stakeholder engagement for a national research project on behalf of an economic consultancy based in London. Christine volunteers with Translators Without Borders and the Masakhane Project and is a member of the Decolonising SOAS working group and, since 2012, the International Organisation for a Participatory Society (London Chapter) and is a warm friend and grateful friend of 16 Beaver Group. 

In her role at the BIEA, Christine’s primary responsibilities are managing the Introduction to Research Processes Course at the BIEA, the UK Annual Lecture at the British Academy, coordinating the UK Governing Council and acting as secretary to the Board of Trustees. Christine reports to the CEO, Board of Trustees and the President of the BIEA.
SOAS, University of London.

Fabian Ongaya

Office Assistant
Jimmy Maranga

Jimmy Maranga

Librarian

Jimmy Maranga is the BIEA Librarian and Membership Officer. He studied Library and Information Science in Kenyatta University. He joined the BIEA in 2018. Jimmy has a passion for learning from people, experiences and books as well. Google can bring you back 100,000 answers, a librarian can bring you back the right one.

John Kanyingi

GIS Survey/ Technician

Mr. John Kanyingi, is a GIS Technician, tasked with handling mapping support for researchers at the BIEA. A firm believer that mapping is not only a vital tool in research presentation but also contributes to the value addition of information presented. In addition, he is in-charge of the management of research equipment and BIEA maps archives, he has also helped supervised the BDF projects since 2016.

He has been engaged in the Summerschool planning and also facilitates mapping course that is normally offered in the training. He is proud to have taken part in numerous archaeological projects in Kenya (Ishiara, North Horr, Mida creek, Turkana), Uganda (North Uganda) Tanzania (Engaruka, Kilwa) and Mozambique (Angoche).  He hold a bachelor’s degree in Geospatial Engineering and Space Technology.

The opportunity provided by the position as a GIS Technician that requires travelling to numerous and adventurous through the years, have ensured his zeal and passion for travelling is always alive.

Loice Ongere

Research Support Officer

Loice joined the BIEA in August 2019. She is responsible for the Institute’s events logistics, affiliations, permit applications, health and safety among other engagements. Loice has a Bachelor’s degree in Anthropology from the University of Nairobi and also previously worked at the BIEA as an undergraduate volunteer.

Mercy Kavetsa Lukango

BIEA Steward

Paul Maundu

Assistant Caretaker

Research Fellows

Dr. Alice N. Gathoni

RESEARCH FELLOW

Alice Gathoni is a research fellow at the British Institute in Eastern Africa(BIEA) where she joined in 2020. She’s currently researching on the impact of digital technologies and innovations in the lives of youth with disabilities in Kenya. She has over 18years experience working in the area of education, with a specific interest in the linkages between education and development outcomes for marginalised youth, particularly those with disabilities. Previously, she worked with the Ministry of Education as a Coordinator Special Needs Education and as a Special education teacher.

Her research interests are mainly in the domains of education, disability, digital technologies and development with a particular focus on issues of; access and equity for marginalised youth.  Her PhD explored how youth with disabilities’ use of social media in Higher education impacted on their agency, inclusion and aspirations.  Alice has undertaken various international consultancies to review educational projects including the; Open University Teacher Education in Sub-Saharan Africa (TESSA) Online Open Educational Resources, Towards Results in Education in English (TREE) in Mynamar and the disability directory for the I-GATE, Sierra-Leone Girls Education Challenge project.

Besides her research work, Alice provides mentorship to graduate students affiliated to the BIEA, coordinates the PhD forum and organizes student workshops, trainings and conferences. She volunteers with community based organisations working with children and youth with disabilities and has previously served as a trustee at Advantage Africa-UK, L’arche Kenya and St. Martin’s Catholic Social Apostolate.

Alice holds a PhD in Childhood and Youth Studies from the Open University, UK; a Master of Philosophy in Educational Research from the University of Cambridge, UK; a Master of Education in Special Education from the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa, USA and a Bachelor of Education in Special Education from Kenyatta University.

She was a Cambridge Commonwealth scholar at the University of Cambridge between 2013-2014 and Ford Foundation International Fellow/ scholar at the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa between 2011-2013.

Recent publications: Peer Reviewed

  • Christopher J. Cormier, Mildred Boveda, Funké Aladejebi & Alice Gathoni (2021) Black Teachers’ Affirmations on The Social–emotional And Mental Health Needs of Learners: a Transnational Examination, Kappa Delta Pi Record, 57:1, 30-36. DOI: 10.1080/00228958.2021.1851584
  • Under Review: A historical account of Youth with disabilities’ educational transitions in Kenya
  • In preparation: Resilience and Youth with disabilities’ practices on social media in the face of a pandemic.

Professor Jacqueline McGlade FLS, FRSA

  • ProCol Kenya Lead Scientist, British Institute in Eastern Africa, Kenya
  • Director Sekenani Space and Resilience Research Centre, Maasai Mara University, Kenya
  • Professor Institute for Global Prosperity and Engineering, University College London, UK
  • Professor of the Environment, Gresham College, London

Professor McGlade is recognized as a leading expert in ecosystem dynamics, sustainable development, environmental informatics, early warning systems and citizen science using sensor web enabled monitoring systems and applications for web intelligence and decision-making under high uncertainty. Her current research include open data solutions, including earth observation, mapping and monitoring and community science to support the 2030 Agenda on Sustainable Development, open government and the African Regional Data Cube; natural prosperity, resilience and climate change; and developing the knowledge base on traditional medicines to combat malnutrition and disease in sub-Saharan Africa.

Previously she was UN Environment’s Chief Scientist, Director of Science and Chief Statistician, leading on environmental indicators, data and assessments for the 2030 Agenda on Sustainable Development. And before that, Executive Director of the European Environment Agency, Director of the UK Centre for Coastal and Marine Sciences, Professor of Biological Sciences at the University of Warwick, Director of Theoretical Ecology at the FZ Jülich and Senior Scientist at the Bedford Institute of Oceanography in the Federal Government of Canada. She holds a number of key advisory roles including for the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, China Council and the European Space Agency.

She has published more than 200 research publications and produced award winning films and radio series. In 2017 she gave a TEDx talk on Building Resilience to Climate Change and recently featured as the guest in BBC series The Life Scientific. Her Gresham public lectures can be watched online.

Previous Directors and Assistant Directors

  • Dr Joost Fontein: DIRECTOR [2014 – 18]
  • Professor Ambreena Manji: DIRECTOR [2010-14]
  • Professor David Anderson
  • Professor Justin Willis
  • Professor Paul Lane: DIRECTOR [1998-2006]
  • Professor John Sutton: DIRECTOR [1983-98]
  • Dr Neville Chittick: DIRECTOR [1961-83]
  • Dr Matthew Davies: ASSISTANT DIRECTOR [2008-10]. RESEARCH FELLOW IN ARCHAEOLOGY [2010-13]
  • Dr Stephanie Wynne-Jones: ASSISTANT DIRECTOR [2005-08]. TRUSTEE [2010- ]
  • Dr Andrew Burton: ASSISTANT DIRECTOR [2001-05]
  • Dr Shane Doyle: ASSISTANT DIRECTOR [1997-2000]
  • Professor David Phillipson FBA FSA: ASSISTANT DIRECTOR [1973-78]. PRESIDENT [1993-2006]. HON SECRETARY [1981-82, 1985-93]. TRUSTEE [1980- ]
  • Professor Peter Robertshaw: ASSISTANT DIRECTOR [1979-88]
  • Dr Robert Soper: ASSISTANT DIRECTOR [1965-72]
  • Professor Merrick Posnansky: ASSISTANT DIRECTOR [1962-64]