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History Prof. Discusses Kenyan Elections at Brookings

Associate Professor of History Matthew Carotenuto participated in a panel discussion on July 21 at the Brookings Institution in Washington D.C.

Hosted by the African Security Initiative, nearly 200 policy makers and members of the diplomatic community were in attendance. The discussion explored the local, regional and global impact of Kenya’s upcoming Aug. 8 national elections. The panel combined Carotenuto’s expertise in Kenyan history with analysts from Brookings, the Congressional Research Service and the International Republican Institute.

While the election may be far removed from Canton, New York, it certainly seems close to home for many in the broader St. Lawrence community. That’s because four St. Lawrence University alumni are running for re-election in Kenya’s National Assembly, and a fifth serving as Kenya’s Cabinet minister for the Environment.

View a Brookings article about the discussion

Carotenuto also spoke to St. Lawrence alumni in Washington, D.C., about St. Lawrence’s Engaging Africa Initiative and the broad impact of over four decades of institutional investment in Kenya. His talk on July 20 highlighted the work that he, Director of Digital Initiatives Eric Williams-Bergen and Shanice Arlow ’20 have been performing to create a Digital Archive for St. Lawrence University’s Kenya Semester Program.   

In 2015, St. Lawrence University began collaborating with the Brookings Institution, a nonprofit public policy organization based in Washington, D.C., as part of its Africa Security Initiative. The initiative brings together the expertise of St. Lawrence faculty and student interns with Brookings scholars. Faculty from St. Lawrence work alongside Brookings scholars and experts from the Institute’s Africa Growth Initiative in its Global Economy and Development Program.

In November 2015, McKie took part in a panel discussion on the Great Lakes Region of Africa. In April 2016, Abye Assefa, associate professor of sociology and African studies, participated in a panel discussion at Brookings regarding the security situation in Ethiopia and how it relates to the broader region. In July 2016, Carotenuto took part in a discussion on President Obama’s policy legacy for African security and development. And in May 2017, Kristin McKie, assistant professor of government and African studies, participated in a panel discussion that addressed conflict, famine and security in Africa today.

The collaboration with Brookings also funds a St. Lawrence University student internship in D.C. This summer, Emily Terry ’17 of New Minas, Nova Scotia, a Francophone studies major and African studies, education studies and peace studies minor, served as St. Lawrence’s summer 2017 intern at Brookings.

For more information, visit St. Lawrence’s African Studies program.