Dr Cynthia Kamwengo

BA (Zambia), MA (Flinders), PhD (Durham)

Fellow (B), Postgraduate Mentor

College Roles

  • Margaret Anstee Centre Research Fellow (B)
  • Postgraduate Mentor


Email: cmk76@cam.ac.uk


Dr Cynthia M. Kamwengo is a Research Fellow at the Margaret Anstee Centre for Global Studies at Newnham College. She is an academic and policy analyst whose research focuses on the politics of global development, knowledge production and policy diffusion in the global South. Themes such as culture, identity, power relations, decolonization and ethnographic methods are central to her research.

Cynthia holds a PhD in Human Geography from Durham University, an MA in International Development from Flinders University (Adelaide, Australia) and a BA in Development Studies and Economics from the University of Zambia (Lusaka, Zambia). Prior to joining the University of Cambridge, Cynthia held the CDS Fellowship in International Development at the University of Bath and provided research consultancy services to diverse agencies, including the OECD-DCD.

Research Interests

Dr Kamwengo’s current research project deploys interdisciplinary perspectives from human geography, international relations and development studies to interrogate the strategies for cementing government trusteeship of the economy and shaping the public’s minds for development that the Zambian government has historically adopted from Commonwealth countries. The study also examines the source and impact of theories that suggest external actors are engaging in economic sabotage and the reasons non-alignment continues to influence how Zambia navigates tensions between Western countries and the East led by China and Russia. The project intends to produce policy recommendations for government agencies and make conceptual contributions to the academic study of national identity, African agency and multilateralism.