Accepted paper:

Piling-up governance: educational multiplicity in self-declared Republic of Somaliland


Tobias Gandrup (University of Antwerp)

Paper short abstract:

This paper analyses how the education sector in self-declared Republic of Somaliland is governed. The main argument is that relative absence of state does not mean absence of governance, quite the contrary: a multiplicity of institutions and practices pile up.

Paper long abstract:

This paper analyses the fragmented educational landscape in Hargeisa, the capital of self-declared Republic of Somaliland in the Northern part of Somalia, where a multiplicity of institutions and practices have emerged. In doing so, the paper unfolds how governance takes place in relative absence of the state. While governance in Somaliland has been analyzed as processes of hybridity, this paper deploys 'sedimentation' (Bierschenk and Olivier de Sardan, 2003) to unfold the 'piling up' of institutions and practices. Firstly, the paper shows how the Somaliland authority manifested itself in the education sector by recycling materials from the previous Somali regime. The development of the curriculum is a particularly good example of sedimentation in this regard. Secondly, it shows how different modes of governing the education sector emerged next to the state system creating a rather fragmented sector. By building on top of the Koranic school system, a variety of different private actors evolved into large education institutions. This illustrates that sedimentation does not only proceed in the process of building a state system but also in parallel to it, adding yet more layers to the pile. Thirdly, the last part of the paper concentrates on how school level agents selectively apply at times contradictory practices emanating from this complex multi-institutional education landscape in Hargeisa.

panel Econ31
Continuity and disruption in public service provision