School of Social and Political Science

Dr Michael Aeby

Job Title

Visiting Academic

Michael Aeby

Research interests

Research interests

African Politics; Peace & Conflict Studies

African Peace and Security Architecture, mediation, conflict prevention, civil society inclusion, peace agreement implementation, power-sharing, coups d'états, Southern Africa, Zimbabwe



I joined the University of Edinburgh as a Visiting Academic in 2020 and co-organise the African Politics Research Group. My academic and policy research relates to peace, conflict and governance in Africa.


Current research projects

  • Civil Society Participation in Conflict Prevention and Peacemaking in the African Peace & Security Architecture - The postdoc project compares the involvement of African civil society actors in early warning, preventive diplomacy and mediations of the AU, ECOWAS, IGAD and SADC. The 24 months-long postdoc is financed by the Swiss National Science Foundation.
  • How African Organisations Support the Implementation of Peace Agreements  - The study examines mediation, guarantees and monitoring practices by the AU, IGAD and SADC that are aimed at supporting the implementation of comprehensive peace agreements. The study is part of the Fragmentation of Peacemaking & Peacebuilding Project of the Political Settlements Research Programme.
  • Coups d’États in Africa since the Lomé Declaration - The project compares 13 successful coups that occurred since the adoption of the anti-coup norm of the AU. Our research focuses on the objectives and outcomes of contemporary coups, and on the responses of regional organisations. The project is led by the Kroc Institute for International Peace Studies of the University of Notre Dame.



Journal articles

Policy reports

  • Civil Society Participation in Peace-Making and Mediation Support in the APSA: Insights on the AU, ECOWAS and SADC, Institute for Justice and Reconciliation, Cape Town, January 2021. Download
  • SADC – The Southern Arrested Development Community? Enduring Challenges to Peace and Security in Southern Africa, Policy Dialogue, N° 14, The Nordic Africa Institute, Uppsala, 2019. Download

Policy briefs

  • Peace & Security Challenges in Southern Africa: Governance Deficits and Lacklustre Regional Conflict Management, Policy Note N° 4:18, Nordic Africa Institute, Uppsala, 2018. Download
  • Women in South Africa’s Democratic Transition (1990-1998). Women in Peace & Transition Processes. Geneva: Inclusive Peace & Transition Initiative, Graduate Institute, 2018. Download

Book chapters

  • ‘Navigating Channels for Civil Society Participation in Conflict Prevention and Peace-Making in the African Peace & Security Architecture’, in: J. C. Kiyala, G.T. Harries, Civil Society and Peacebuilding in Sub-Saharan Africa: An Overview, Springer Publishing, Forthcoming.
  • with Jamie Pring. ‘The Buzz about Inclusion in Peace Research, Policy and Practice in IGAD and SADC’, in: U. Engel, L. Gelot, K.  Döring, J. Herpolsheimer (eds.), APSA Inside-Out: Researching the Inner Life of the African Peace & Security Architecture, Brill Publishers, Leiden, 2018, pp 186-208.



  • PhD in African History, University of Basel. Thesis: Zimbabwe’s Gruelling Transition: Interim Power-Sharing and Regional Conflict Management in Southern Africa
  • MA in African History & Political Sociology, University of Basel
  • BA in History and Media Studies, University of Fribourg




  • University of Cape Town, Institute for Democracy, Citizenship and Public Policy in Africa – Research Associate


  • Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies Geneva – researcher
  • Swisspeace, Statehood & Conflict Programme – researcher
  • University of Basel, Department of Historical Studies – PhD candidate
  • University of the Witwatersrand, Department of Political Studies – visiting PhD fellow
  • University of Zimbabwe, Department of History – visiting PhD fellow
  • University of the Western Cape, Centre for Humanities Research – visiting PhD fellow
  • Human Science Research Council, Democracy & Governance Programme – research intern