Peter Kankonde Bukasa, 2013-2016


Peter Kankonde ist jetzt am Kroc Institute for International Peace Studies, University of Notre Dame.

At MPI-MMG, Peter Kankonde prepared his doctorate through a research project in the field of ethnic diversity. Peter is a Congolese (DRC) national. He finished his PhD in Migration and Displacement at the African Centre for Migration and Society (ACMS), University of the Witwatersrand. After completing his undergraduate studies in public law and working briefly as a candidate lawyer and human rights activist in Kinshasa, he moved to Johannesburg, South Africa, and took his BA Honours and Master's Degrees in Forced Migration Studies from the University of the Witwatersrand.

His interdisciplinary research interests have evolved from a focus on human rights and law and society issues to the interrogating of socio-cultural meaning of migrants’ transnational socio-political belonging and participation. He is currently researching on migrants’ Pentecostalism, the role of religion in migrants’ integration and social life, and the dynamics of mutual perceptions between local and foreign populations, migrants-locals social conflicts and super-diversity issues in Johannesburg’s migrant populated areas.

Peter has extensively worked on and supervised numerous field research projects at ACMS since 2007. He also co-ordinates, since January 2013, the new ACMS’ Religion and Migration Research Initiative. He has published a book and an article on the socio-cultural dynamics and meanings of migrants’ remittance and he is working on numerous publication projects. His PhD project, titled: ‘The Business of Integration: Super-diversity, Migrant Religious Entrepreneurship, and Social Transformation in Post-Apartheid South Africa.’ This project examines, through the analysis of identity construction and social articulations of religious belief, how Congolese and Nigerian migrants’ Pentecostal churches generate legitimacy in South Africa, irrespective of the general xenophobic sentiments surrounding African migrants’ presence. Peter specifically analyzes the migrants’ Pentecostal churches’ organizational legitimacy construction process and the operationalisation of targeted proselytizing strategies in a socially fragmented and religiously segmented South Africa’s society. As such my research is part of and aims to contribute to broader research interests that look at social spaces of conviviality and constructive ways in which migrants communities converge with local populations to create new social formations, cultures, and practices.


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