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7Qs for Academics: Olivia Faite Izidine


Today we speak to Olivia Faite Izidine from the National Institute for Social Action in Mozambique.

This is an ongoing series where we introduce some key researchers and academics getting to understand their work, their developing research interests as well as what keeps them engaged.


Explain the nature of your work and/or how it relates to inequality.

My work looks at how digitalisation can be more or less inclusive. My work particularly looks at how poor countries use digital solutions to provide emergency social protection programmes and the need for these to be carefully analysed.

Why do you think inequality remains such an intractable social and economic problem?

Mostly because redistributive policies require more than political will.

What continues to keep you engaged in your work or areas of research?

Because I believe that social protection is a human right and nobody in the world deserves to live without satisfying basic needs such as health, education, water and sanitation and food.

What is one thing your field is not focusing on that it should?

An area not currently being studied is how recipients of social protection policies can raise their voices as citizens and how the modern world could be more inclusive for both women and men.

Who are some academics (in your field or otherwise) whose work you follow closely? Why?

Stephen Devereux for his ongoing work on social protection in Africa; Amartya Sen for his contribution to human development theory and economic welfare; Abraham George from Shanti Bhavan Project for his work in fighting against inequalities between women and men; Dr Denis Mukwege for his remarkable work in campaigning against women sexual abuse in DR Congo.

What books are you currently reading?

Barack Obama’s Dreams from my father

Complete the sentence: “The first thing I do each morning once I get up is...