Stéphanie Perazzone

Stephanie Perazzone.jpg  
Stéphanie Perazzone
Research Associate
Contact: Email:

Currently based at the Global Studies Institute, Stéphanie is a post-doctoral researcher at the University of Geneva‘s Political Science and International Relations Department. Under the leadership of senior lecturer D. Péclard, she currently works on a Swiss Network for International Studies project entitled Civil War and State Formation.  In parallel, she is affiliated as an Associate Researcher with the Global Governance Center and the Centre on Conflict, Development, and Peacebuilding (CCDP) both based at the Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies (IHEID). There, she received her PhD in Political Science and International Relations (2013-2018) Summa Cum Laude with the Félicitations du Jury. Between 2016-2017, she also became a visiting scholar at the University of Amsterdam at the Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences. Her doctoral research was funded by the Swiss National Science Foundation on a doc.CH grant.

An expert in African politics and, in particular, of the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), her PhD work has focused on linking the anthropology and the politics of the postcolonial state in urban settings. In so doing, she crafted a theoretical perspective on the state she termed 'a state ecosystem', composed of the daily practices, systems of significance and historical traces at work in urban DRC. Potentially applicable to many other contexts, the 'state ecosystem' suggests the Congolese state is sustained as a strong organizing force and form of public authority throughout society. Emerging from subtle patterns of both colonially-inflected discursive/material violence, collegial collaboration and symbiotic relations among street-level bureaucrats and ordinary citizens, she argues 'the state' is effectively reproduced in its ideational and performative dimensions.

In addition,  she has developed a research agenda that seeks to introduce the notion of the ‘ordinary’ as a critique of the theoretical perspectives and methodological approaches of IR and political science, explore the contributions of original and ethical methods while conducting fieldwork/creating research designs, and examine issues of ‘colonial durabilities' in global politics (both as practice and discipline).

She previously worked at the UNDP’s country and field offices in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) and conducted extensive field research as a graduate and undergraduate student in Rwanda and the DRC. She gained further academic and field expertise by attending a number of international conference, as a research assistant at the CCDP, a chapter contributor at the Small Arms Survey, and in publishing various peer-reviewed contributions, journal articles and book chapters.

Her research agenda links to visual and qualitative methods, critical theory, post-colonial studies, urban studies, state theory, fragility and failure, international intervention, security promotion and state transformation in Africa’s Great Lakes Region where she continues to conduct field research.

You can find her information and latest news here, from her personal website.

Field(s) of Interest:
  • Sub-Saharan Africa
  • International Security Promotion
  • Peacebuilding/statebuilding
  • Disarmament, Demobilisation, Reintegration (DDR)
  • Urban studies
  • Anthropology of the State
  • Africa's Great Lakes Region
  • Democratic Republic of Congo