Africa Knows! It is time to decolonise minds

About Africa Knows! conference


The Netherlands has a long history of critical scholarly engagement with Africa and of Africa-oriented teaching, research and policy advice. Its African Studies Centre Leiden, and the related Leiden African Studies Assembly, have decided to use the year 2020 to place Africa more firmly on the national and international academic agenda (read more about Africa 2020). This year featured a variety of activities, organized with many partnering universities and other knowledge institutions in the Netherlands, elsewhere in Europe, and in Africa. It concludes with this international conference on Africa’s knowledge landscape: Africa Knows!


This conference is an AEGIS Thematic Conference, that precedes the ECAS9 Conference in Cologne, “African Futures”, 31 May – 3 June 2023. This thematic conference ‘Africa Knows!’ hosts nearly 500 online delegates; ECAS close to 2000 delegates. Of course, we hope and expect that many delegates who succeed in getting an invitation to participate in ‘Africa Knows! will also join ECAS9.


In addition to Leiden University and its African Studies Centre and African Studies Assembly, key partners from the Netherlands are NUFFIC (the Netherlands University Foundation for International Cooperation), Erasmus University Rotterdam (including the International Institute of Social Studies), The Hague University of Applied Sciences/De Haagse Hogeschool, and others, alongside many partners from Africa and some non-AEGIS partners in Europe.Take a look at our partners and sponsors


We have the organizational input of 50 dedicated students. A number of these are Leiden/Delft/Rotterdam-based students in the Minor African Dynamics, and in ongoing (Research) masters and PhD programmes dealing with Africa. Other students are from the ‘Heart of Africa’ student group in and around The Hague University for Applied Sciences. Others are recruited from our collaborating partners in Europe and Africa (if paid by these partners). These students have free access to the conference.


Online conferences come with considerable consumption of energy. This inevitably comes at a cost for our natural environment. Sustainable Development Goal 12 calls for minimizing the use of natural resources and toxic materials in all our consumption.

To this end, the Africa Knows! Conference will donate € 2,000 to a green fund. While truly compensating for the energy consumption associated with this conference would actually cost more, we contribute this amount also in the spirit of stimulating change toward more sustainable ways of living – which are urgently needed to address the gravity of the climate crisis.

Africa Knows! will donate this amount to the acclaimed Netherlands-based organization Trees for All, which seeks to counter global warming by planting trees in Europe, Africa, Asia and Latin America. We’re in this together!’


The web dossier connected to Africa Knows! is now online. See here.


If you have questions about the conference please email Marieke van Winden, African Studies Centre Leiden on m.c.a.van.winden(at)