Mira Demirdirek

Research Fellow


  • Short CV

    • Since 03/2022 Research fellow at the GIGA Institute for Middle East Studies
    • 01/2019 - 03/2019 Internship with DIGNITY Kwanza (Dar es Salaam) as part of EU-Horizon2020 research consortium "Transnational Figurations of Displacement" (TRAFIG)
    • 2018 - 2019 Student research assistant at the GIGA Institute for African Affairs
    • 01/2018 - 03/2018 Internship at the GIGA Institute for African Affairs
    • Education: MA in African Studies, Leiden University; BA in Sociology and Political Science, University of Hamburg and University of Ghana

    Current Research

    • Turkish foreign policy towards Africa

    Countries and Regions

    • Turkey
    • West Africa (particularly Ghana)
    • Tanzania 

    GIGA Focus Global | 6/2022

    Bolstering the Bromances: Turkey’s and Iran’s Tightening Ties with Africa

    The war against Ukraine has created possibilities for emerging actors in Africa – such as Iran and Turkey – to scale up their engagement with the continent. This Focus deals with the question of how the changing global dynamics are allowing Iran and Turkey to boost their ties across the African continent.

    Mira Demirdirek

    Research Fellow

    Hamid Talebian

    Doctoral Researcher

    TRAFIG working paper | 09/2021

    Figurations of Displacement in and beyond Tanzania - Reflections on protracted displacement and translocal connections of Congolese and Burundian refugees in Dar es Salaam

    Catherina Wilson

    Bishara Msallam

    Joan Kabyemela

    Jovin Sanga

    Research Project | 01/03/2022 - 28/02/2025

    Explaining Middle-Power Engagement in External Regions: A Comparison of Iranian, Saudi, and Turkish Sub-Saharan Africa Policies

    By means of a comparative historical analysis of Iranian, Saudi-Arabian, and Turkish engagement in Africa following the continent’s decolonization processes and running up until 2020, this project seeks to make sense of middle-power engagement in external regions. First, the project will identify the periods of shifting IST engagement in Africa. Second, it will analyze the reasons why, and the conditions under which, IST have stepped up—or reduced—their foreign policy efforts in Africa. Third, it will develop mid-range generalizations on middle-power engagement in external regions.
    DFG, 2022-2025

    Speaker, Speaker | 10/06/2021

    Restricting digital mobility among an already 'immobilized' population: How urban refugees circumvent spatial, legal and digital restrictions in their daily life in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania

    Conference 10/06/2021

    Mira Demirdirek

    Research Fellow

    Catherina Wilson

    Leiden University

    Speaker, Speaker | 22/04/2021

    Refugee Machinga on Dar es Salaam’s Digital Pavements. Navigating Immobilization through Social Media Commerce in Urban Tanzania

    Conference 22/04/2021

    Mira Demirdirek

    Research Fellow

    Catherina Wilson

    Leiden University

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