John O. Oucho holds a PhD in Population Geography from the University of Nairobi and was a post-doctoral fellow of the Carolina Population Center in the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, U.S.A in 1982-83. He has taught at University of Nairobi (2 decades) University of Ghana (3 years) and University of Botswana (8 years) where he trained many postgraduate students and contributed significantly to the academic development of these institutions. His academic credentials earned him Fellowship of the Kenya National Academy of Sciences (KNAS) in 1989 and the World Academy of Art and Science (WAAS) in 2003. In 1987-1991, he was Secretary-General of the Union for Population Studies (UAPS) and in 1987-1999 was Secretary of the Population Association of Kenya (PAK), becoming its Patron since 2000. He is a member of several other population associations with regional and global constituencies. He is a well-travelled and well-published academic and has participated in many international conferences, presenting papers and chairing sessions.
Professor Oucho has undertaken consultancies for various United Nations agencies, among them UNFPA, UNICEF, UNESCO, ILO, UNHABITAT and the World Bank; Africa-based and international NGOs working on migration or population and development interrelations. In his home country, he has been the mainstay of Kenya’s population development policy and strategy papers, in 1993-4 chairing and co-ordinating national meetings leading to Kenya’s participation at the International Conference on Population and Development (ICPD), held in Cairo, Egypt in 1994. In 2006 and early part of 2007, Prof. Oucho was adviser to the UNFPA South Africa Office on population and development strategies, leaving the country in March 2007 to become the first African Marie Curie Chair holder on African immigration to Europe in the context of Euro-African relations at the Centre for Research in Ethnic Relations, University of Warwick.
He is an accomplished researcher and a household name in migration research, handling all types of internal and international migration and population-development interrelations, having to his credit more than 20 pieces of research on Kenya, Botswana, eastern and southern Africa and Africa. His major research has focused on rural-migration and rural development in Kenya; emigration dynamics in eastern and southern Africa; skilled immigration and the impact of health policy on immigrants in Botswana; and currently on African international migration in Euro-African interrelations.
Professor Oucho has authored over 250 pieces of work, including books, book chapters, refereed journal articles and conference papers. Two of his books - Urban Migrants and Rural Development in Kenya (Nairobi: Nairobi University Press, 1996) and Undercurrents of Ethnic Conflict in Kenya (Leiden and Boston: Brill Academic Publishers, 2002) ― are invaluable university texts. He is founder and chair of the African Population and Environment Institute, based in Nairobi. His second book has become the centre of special interest in ethnic relations in Kenya and how ethnicity is the one issue exploited to address a variety of governance issues in Kenya.
Since the post-election conflict erupted in Kenya, Prof. Oucho has been invited to deliver a seminar on “Undercurrents of ethnic in Kenya today” at the University of Warwick and has participated in the “Coventry Conversations” at Coventry University and in a Roundtable Table Discussion on Kenya organised by the Royal Commonwealth Society in London.
Marie Curie Chair
Centre for Research in Ethnic Relations
School of Health and Social Studies
The University of Warwick
Tel: +44 (0)24 7657 4731